If you're leasing the place that you live in, you're in need of an HO4 renters insurance policy. Although the lessor carries insurance, that coverage isn't going to cover your personal property or liability in the event of a loss or an accident in your rental unit. The only way that you're going to cover a loss or liability for bodily injury or property damage is through renters insurance that you go out and get for yourself.
Think that you don't need renters coverage? Here are a few good reasons why you should have it.
Personal property loss
You have clothes, jewelry, electronics, computer equipment and other valuable personal property inside of your leased premises. An HO-4 renters policy insures losses of personal property from damage that include but aren't limited to:
- fire, lightning or explosion
- falling objects
- damage caused by aircraft or vehicles
Additional living expenses
Your rental insurance policy has covered risks. If your unit is rendered uninhabitable as a result of one of those risks, your renters coverage will help you pay for additional living expenses. Those expenses might include the the cost of living someplace else until repairs are made, meals and even laundry service.
It's likely that you're going to pay less than $250 per year on renters insurance. Different factors figure into the premium equation like:
- the amount of your coverage
- your deductible
- your geographical location
- the type of coverage you choose
- whether you specially insure and articles of personal property
Your personal property is covered when you travel
When you're traveling, your personal property is covered for theft or other specified risks. You can be covered anywhere on the globe.
If you or an additional insured person under your policy accidentally injures somebody in your rental unit, you're insured up to the limits of your HO4 liability coverage. If a guest slips and falls on a wet kitchen floor, you're covered. A standard rental insurance policy usually carries $100,000 of liability coverage. Renters policies also have medical payments coverage up to a specified amount that pays medical bills of a person injured on the rental premises regardless whether it was your fault.
Just about all rental policies exclude flooding and earthquakes, so if you want coverage for either of these risks, you must ask for it. If you're renting in a geographical area that has hurricanes, you'll need special coverage for those, too.
Renters coverage is particularly important. It covers your personal property in your rental unit, in your car or even when you're on vacation. If a guest gets hurt in your home, you're covered. Rather than actual cash value for loss of personal property, ask your agent about replacement cost. It makes a big difference in your coverage.