Some people are under the impression that renter insurance is a needless expense especially when the landlord has insurance. Such persons believe that the landlord’s insurance policy will cover renters for any mishap. That is untrue.
The landlord insurance policy will almost certainly NOT cover your (renter) property damaged in an adverse covered event.
So if your property is ruined by flooding, fire or some other adverse event, do not think that the landlord’s insurance policy can pay for it.
In the absence of renter insurance, you might end up losing your property to events like theft for instance. Without renter insurance to cover you, you will be left stranded with nothing to fall back on. You will have to pay for all property damage out of your own pocket.
There is much more to renter insurance than what you might think. Here are 9 things that renter insurance in Connecticut covers which you may not have known.
Besides covering your possessions in your rental home, the renter policy will also cover certain off-premise possessions.
If you find that your laptop has been stolen from your car while you were away then renter insurance should cover that. Likewise, if your bike was stolen from the park bike rack then you can turn towards renter insurance.
Compensation for Forced Relocation
If you are forced to relocate and live elsewhere due to an event like fire, vandalism or flooding (due to water pipe breakage), then you may be able to recover compensation up to a certain limit outlined in your renter policy. The purpose of this protection is to help you pay for living expenses when you are forced to relocate.
How much can you get by way of this protection? The renter policy may pay you up to 30 to 50 percent of property value insured by your policy.
Thus, if property worth $50,000 is insured under your renter policy while the policy pays for up to 30% of this value, then you may get 30% x $50,000 = $15,000 to pay for your expenses if you are forced to relocate. Make sure that you check your policy to find out the exact percentage.
Exactly how much coverage will you require from your renter insurance? To find out, you can take a home inventory. This valuation will let you know the cost of your possessions. This is how much you will have to pay in case you need to replace your possessions. But with renter insurance that covers all of your property, you may not have to pay as much.
The insurance representative can help you with a home inventory so that all of your possessions are covered under the renter policy.
Reducing Renter Insurance Expenses
In case you need to reduce your cost of renter insurance, you can go for a higher deductible. This is the amount that you will have to pay out of pocket before your insurance policy will pay benefits. So you can reduce your renter insurance premium by opting for a higher deductible. But before you can recover benefits, you will have to pay a higher deductible out of pocket.
Another way of saving on renter insurance is to buy all your policies from the same insurer. This can save you a lot of money in the long run.
Reducing Renter Insurance Expenses
Connecticut citizens pride themselves on living in a low crime state. The Nutmeg state that they call home – Connecticut – is relatively peaceful. But there is still a lot that can go wrong for you and leave you badly hurt.
While crime in Connecticut is lower than the national average it is not nonexistent.
Connecticut saw a property crime rate of 14 per thousand residents in the past year. That’s lower than the national average of 21. But it doesn’t mean you are completely safe.
What do these stats imply? 14 residents per thousand are robbed in their homes EACH YEAR. That may not sound like a lot.
But when you take this same number over the average lifespan, you will be shocked.
Even if you are not awesome at math the problem is fairly simple. If 14 CT residents per thousand are robbed each year, then how many will be robbed in 50 years? Answer: 14 x 50 = 700 residents PER THOUSAND. When taken over 50 years, the number is far scarier.
Taking this approach, ALL Connecticut residents will probably be robbed in just over 70 years – which is much shorter than the expected US lifespan. In other words, according to the statistics, you can expect to be robbed at least once in your lifetime on your property in Connecticut.
Renter insurance will probably not feel so optional after realizing these ramifications.
Renter insurance can cover you against such crimes. You can recover the loss of insured possessions (by break-ins, burglaries and thefts) from your renter policy.
In fact, renter insurance can cover a whole lot more than just theft. Property losses arising form fire, vandalism, falling objects and even vehicles plowing into your home are often covered under renter insurance.
Take a look at your renter insurance policy and ask your insurance agent about covered events.
Liability coverage is an important facet of renter insurance. Liability coverage really matters in Connecticut especially when you live in a shared property.
In Connecticut, you have to pay for damages caused to others if THEIR share of responsibility for damages caused thus is not more than 50%.
You might think that this may not be likely to happen but the fact is that it does. The US is an increasingly litigious society. Everything these days gets dragged to court is seems. So for matters as serious as property damage, you can certainly expect a fierce court battle.
Just think about it: the average damage done by a fire in a building without sprinklers is $45,000. And what if fire spread from your apartment to numerous others? You will probably have not one but many lawsuits on your hand. All those nice looking folks and neighbors in your building will suddenly be trying to squeeze every cent out of you.
The liability coverage in renter insurance could provide you much needed support against such possibilities.
You May Need Renter Insurance Even with Second Hand Stuff
If you have just started living independently, you may not have a lot of stuff. A lot of it could be second hand.
But what if your old stuff got damaged? You will still need to replace it. For example, that couch could be 2 decades old and quite cheap in your opinion. But if it goes up in flames, you will still need to replace it.
But with renter insurance, you have much better protection. If the same couch were ruined, you could get a couch of similar quality and kind from the renter policy. The same applies to all your other stuff. The renter policy can replace destroyed insured possessions with similar quality and kind.
If you have just started living on your own, you may not be able to recover the cost of second hand stuff on your own. Whats more, you will likely buy more and more valuable stuff as you start earning.
Another fact to consider is that at this point in life, you will not to have a liability claim against you because you simple don’t have the means to pay that much. To cover yourself against liability claims, you will benefit from renter insurance.
Don’t think that you will be able to avoid liability claims by showing your tiny paycheck. As soon as you start earning more, you will have to start paying up. The much needed extra money from the dream job that you waited so long for, may go towards liability claims instead of your own pocket. Renter insurance can protect against such adverse scenarios.
Landlord Insurance Often Does NOT Protect You
Some renters think that landlord insurance will protect them. If only life were that good.
One big myth surrounding renter insurance is that it is for the benefit of the landlord and their rental property.
It is all too easy to think that the renter insurance stipulation in the rent agreement is just a ruse for getting you the renter to pay for building insurance.
The truth is that renter insurance covers you the renter against possibilities that are NOT covered by landlord insurance.
The landlord insurance benefits will mostly go to the landlord not you. Don’t expect to get a cut of the landlord insurance benefits.
Insurance terms and conditions are very strict and well-defined. They are primarily designed to protect the policy holder. So landlord insurance will be strictly defined to protect the landlord. You may likely get nothing out of it.
Here is an example. What if someone slips and falls on your snowy sidewalk? The victim can sue both you and the landlord irrespective of what the rent agreement says about snow cleanup. In that case, the landlord will have their insurance to defend them and you the renter will have your own renter insurance to defend you. So the landlord’s policy will pay claims to the landlord, not you.
And what about fires? If you are responsible for a fire, will the landlord insurance save you from paying up? Quite the opposite! Insurance companies don’t pay up without a fight. The landlord’s insurer will do a thorough investigation to find out who was responsible for the fire. You will soon be found out. The landlord insurer will file a big claim against you for the fire. What will protect you against this big claim? Renter insurance of course!
Far from paying and protecting you, the landlord’s insurer could actually sue you for damages!
In such cases, it will be your renter insurance policy that may protect you against terrible legal repercussions.
Liability Claims and Renter Insurance
Liability coverage can pay costs incurred by bodily harm and property damage for which you were responsible.
You can try to be as careful as possible, but accidents can and do happen. It takes a momentary lapse in focus to get a fire going in the kitchen for instance.
Firewalls can save lives. But they do not completely stop damage from happening to other parts of the building. Water damage, smoke damage and fire damage from a single incident can spread throughout the building and cost huge amounts. If you are found to be negligent, you may be liable to pay up for all this damage.
You need liability coverage to protect yourself against such real possibilities. You could be held responsible for bodily harm, property damage and other damages arising from acts of negligence.
Liability coverage from renter insurance can help you against such claims and even pay for you in case the court orders you to. With renter insurance paying for such liabilities, your assets, fortunes and future are much better protected. Your future and fortune wont go down to liability claims.
Even if you are found by court to be liable for damages and harm due to negligence, the renter policy can cover you. Negligence means that you had a duty to know that your actions can result in serious harm, injury and damage, so you should have avoided such actions. The losses transpired because you failed to take proper care. In such cases, the court can order you to pay massive amounts in damages. That is where the liability coverage of renter insurance plays a key role to safeguard your interests.
These were just some of the many things that you didn’t know about what renter insurance in Connecticut covers. You should talk to your insurance agent for more information.
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