P/L/R Reports: Renter’s Insurance

P/L/R Reports: Renter’s Insurance

Ahhh…August. Traditionally the time for one last summer vacation, back-to-school shopping, and sending the big kids off to college.

But this isn’t just any August. This is August in the year 2020!

From the brush fires that burned up Australia to battling a global pandemic, it’is hard to say what will happen next.

Here at P/L/R Insurance, we can’t tell you what’s coming next, but we can offer you the peace of mind that comes with being properly insured. Obviously, you need coverage for your cars, life, health, and home – but those broad categories don’t cover everyone.

What if you’re a renter? Well, then you need renter’s insurance instead of a homeowner’s policy!

Renters aren’t just college students. There are many reasons that our customers choose to rent a place to live instead of buying a home:
  • No down payment needed
  • If home values tank, you lose nothing
  • Property Taxes are paid by the owner of the property
  • You don’t have to sell the place before you can move
  • Save money on insurance

Since this IS the P/L/R blog, we’ll break down that last one for you:

“Moving into a new place requires more than just moving your stuff and changing your address,” says Bill Lawrence, CIC, and President of P/L/R Insurance. “It’s critically important to make sure you have the protection you need in case of an emergency.

“Most landlords only carry insurance for the actual building itself. It’s up to the individual tenants to protect their personal possessions and assets, and that’s why we offer renter’s insurance. It protects your belongings in case of fire, theft, or damage when you live in a home that you do not own, and typically covers three major categories:”

Personal property – Your belongings will usually be covered against loss caused by power surges, water damage, fire, vandalism, theft, and other events that you can’t control. You can choose to cover the replacement cost of your belongings, and your policy will pay to replace your belongings with a new item of comparable value. If you prefer actual cash value coverage, the policy will pay what the item is worth today, which may be less than the actual cost of replacing the item you lost.

Specific categories of goods (electronics, jewelry, etc.) are usually only covered up to a certain limit. If you have an elaborate electronics set up or a valuable collection of heirloom jewelry, consider adding a (typically inexpensive) personal articles policy.

Loss of use – Most policies will cover your living expenses (within limits) if you’re displaced after something like a fire or a tree crashing through the roof. If you’re forced to leave your home while it’s being repaired, a good renter’s policy with loss of use coverage will pay the expenses you incur for lodging, food, and other necessities until you can move back in.
Liability – this coverage pays for bodily injury and property damage caused by negligence. For example, you might accidentally overfill your bathtub. It might overflow into your downstairs neighbor’s apartment. Then you might be held liable for that damage and required to pay for repairs, medical bills, and even defense costs if they take you to court.

How much coverage do I need?

Some landlords require specified minimum amounts of liability coverage; many do not. Either way, a good insurance agent will help you determine how much coverage you need.

You’ll need to have some idea of how much your belongings are worth. Be sure to think through what it would cost to replace everything in your home.

Today, it’s considered a best practice to take photos or videos of your home and your possessions, so you’ll have a record of all your things if you need to make a claim.

How much will it cost?

“As usual, the answer to this question is ‘it depends,’ Lawrence says. “There are usually discounts for getting more than one policy from the same company, so we start by contacting the customer’s auto insurer to see if we can secure a bundled rate.

“Prices vary according to the amount of coverage needed. When we don’t know where to start, we recommend a basic policy with $30,000 coverage for personal property, $300,000 for liability, and a $500 or $1,000 deductible and then work from there.”

The whole point of insurance is to protect yourself from financial ruin if the worst should happen. Life is unpredictable, but at P/L/R, you can count on us to be there when you need us. Contact us today at info@plrinsurance.com and experience insurance the way it’s supposed to be.

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