You probably don't think you need renter's insurance, or maybe you've never thought about it, I know. But you do, and it's relatively cheap (like a few dollars a month cheap). It will save you from a whole lot of pain and suffering down the track, so here's why you need it.
Here's everything you need to know about renter's insurance
- 1. Renter's insurance covers you for more than you think
- 2. Renter's insurance can cover your things and stuff
- 3. Renter's insurance can also cover you for people who hurt themselves at your place
- 4. There's a chance that you are actually required to have renter's insurance
- 5. It will give you peace of mind
1. Renter's insurance covers you for more than you think
Do you know what personal liability is?
Let's use an example: You're walking down the street and a baseball bounces in front of you. You're a nice person so you pick it up and look around to who threw it. You see them standing in a park some way away, but you're an athlete, so you wind up and throw it as hard as you can. As the ball flies through the air someone walks in front of the path of the ball and BLAM! it hits them in the side of the head.
This is America, you're in trouble, they're suing you for what they've been through, and all the medical costs associated. You didn't even intend to hit them, but that doesn't really matter in this case!
Either way though, you're going to court and the insurance company wants your money.
This is where personal liability steps in.
Your renter's insurance (in some/many cases) can cover you for what's about to happen in court (lawyers) and costs if they try and settle (or the court finds against you). This can be crazy bananas expensive, so it's certainly a big plus in the insurance column.
Sure, it might not happen, BUT WHAT IF IT DID!?
One thing that renter's insurance does not cover though: driving and anything to do with cars. That's automotive insurance AND YOU NEED THAT TOO!
2. Renter's insurance can cover your things and stuff
This is the traditional element of what most people think of when they think of renter's insurance. Your stuff!
If someone comes into your house and steals your things, renter's insurance can help. If something blows up in your apartment that breaks all your stuff, that's where renter's insurance can help.
Really, this is the bit where you might be able to save some money if you're prone to losing things.
3. Renter's insurance can also cover you for people who hurt themselves at your place
When someone visits your home or apartment, did you know that if they fall over and crack their nose on your rare DVD collection, you might be liable? Even if you weren't personally involved in the situation at the time, it's still your home where it happened.
It turns out that you can get into quite some trouble if something in your apartment causes someone else harm. Sure, your friends wouldn't do that, but if they're stuck with a lot of medical bills or are out of work for some time, their lawyer is going to recommend that they sue whoever they can (read: you).
Renter's insurance can help you with this by covering for medical and damages of those who injure themselves.
4. There's a chance that you are actually required to have renter's insurance
Read your tenancy agreements! Golly, the number of people who I talk to who just signed because they wanted an apartment and didn't understand exactly what was required of them is mind-boggling.
Sit there. Take time. Understand every single element.
A lot of landlords will REQUIRE that you have insurance. If you don't, you're in a world of hurt if something happens to the building because now you're also in breach of contract. Read your agreements, wear fake glasses (if you don't wear glasses), and chew on a pen while you do, it'll make you look even more intelligent.
5. It will give you peace of mind
This one is less business and more personal, but it's important when you're moving overseas to a new country to not burden yourself with things that could be easily solved.
You're going to have lots of things to worry and stress about, don't let this be one of them!
So, in summary: Look into renter's insurance yourself, read everything, read some more, and then make a decision for yourself.
My recommendation for renter's insurance
I use Lemonade for my insurance, which works out for me at less than $10 a month.