Renter’s insurance has many variables. One of the most common questions is How Much Renters Insurance Do I Need? Well, it depends on your carrier and your specific needs, but our formula will help you get an estimate.
How to calculate renters insurance coverage
The formula we recommend is starting with $10,000-15,000 per bedroom in your rental. This includes the value of your appliances, furniture, and décor. Then, add the value of your clothes and electronics, kids’ toys, and accessories. Add these totals together and this is how much coverage you should seek from a renter insurance policy.
- You live in a 3-bedroom apartment
- $30,000 – $10,000 per room for appliances, furniture, décor
- $20,000 – clothes and small, miscellaneous items
- $50,000 – total personal property coverage needed
The Difference: Personal Property and Liability
Personal property coverage- This covers your clothes, appliances, furniture, electronics, and other personal items if they are damaged, destroyed, or stolen. This is typically what people think about when they purchase renters insurance. Keep in mind that the quality of your items matters too. If you own high-class items, you will need more coverage!
Inside the home- As long as the damage is not caused by negligence, your items are typically covered inside of the space you are renting. An accidental toilet overflow, water from your upstairs neighbor, and fire damage are typically all “covered perils” or specifically outlined coverages in your policy. Renters insurance covers items in places outside the home too!
Storage units- Many keep personal items in storage units during moves or transitions in life. Depending on your carrier, your limits may include these belongings. Check with your agent to know your policy details!
During travel- We love telling people about this. Say you are at a gas station on the way to the beach and someone steals a suitcase from your vehicle. Renters Insurance can cover this mishap.
Liability- Renters insurance covers a certain limit of liability coverage in the instance of someone getting injured on your property. Whether an unfortunate fall down the stairs or your child throwing a baseball through the neighbor’s window—liability coverage is what protects you.
Does Renters Insurance Cover Water Damage?
Accidental leaks- This includes accidental overflows of toilets and sinks as well as leaks from the ceiling. Your policy typically covers items damaged or destroyed, offering partial or full replacement.
Flood damage- This peril is likely NOT covered by your renters insurance or the property owner’s insurance and must be added to your coverage through a specific flood insurance policy. This is something you can request from your agent.
Sewage backup- Backups are another mishap that are typically not included in renters insurance policies but are generally inexpensive to add coverage for.
Common Misconceptions About Renters Insurance
“I don’t need renters insurance because my property manager is insured.”
Even if you are not at fault for damage that occurs to your property, your property manager has no responsibility for your personal belongings. If a fire, water, or theft occurs, your personal items are only replaceable if you have a renters insurance policy.
“I am not liable for others’ injuries because I do not own the property.”
Let’s say someone takes a tumble in your rental, or an unwatched candle starts a fire. The offended party or landlord can seek damages from you. Renter insurance policies help in these scenarios.
Purchasing a Policy
Cost- The good news is that renters insurance is generally inexpensive! In Missouri, policies average about $22 a month or $264 per year!
Requirements- Oftentimes, property owners require renters insurance, and we actually recommend they do. Having this coverage creates a buffer between tenants and property owners.
Talk to an agent- Speaking with an insurance broker is always the best option to find you the right amount of coverage for your belongings.
Protecting your belongings as a renter is important; they are what makes your rental a home! If you are a renter searching for an insurance policy, Robbins Insurance Group can help you search across various carriers to find the coverage that best fits your needs. Reach out to a team member, and we will be happy to educate you on your options!