Your guide to tenant insurance

4 minute read Published on May 14, 2021 by BrokerLink Communications

Your guide to tenant insurance

You may have heard a rumour that tenant insurance isn’t necessary. We’re here to tell you that’s not true! Tenant insurance is an affordable purchase that protects your belongings and offers personal liability coverage.

We can already anticipate what you’re going to say next: my belongings aren’t worth insuring! Here’s our response: even if your belongings aren’t terribly valuable, would you be able to replace all your clothing, furniture and electronics at once if they were damaged or stolen? If you answered no to this question, we suggest you keep reading and we’ll explain what tenant insurance is and how it can protect you.

Tenant insurance overview

Tenant insurance covers the belongings inside your rental unit. It does not cover the actual unit itself – that should be covered by your landlord’s insurance. Tenant insurance is available for most types of rental units, including houses, apartments and condos.

The exact cost of tenant insurance varies, but typically, it costs an average of approximately $20 - $30 per month – that’s less than $1 a day or a couple coffees a week!

Here are a few of the different factors that can affect the cost of tenant insurance:

  • The value of your personal belongings
  • Your address
  • The amount of liability coverage you purchase
  • Your claims history

Tenant insurance coverage

You may be wondering why you need tenant insurance. If you’re renting, there’s a good chance you don’t see yourself living there forever. You may also think tenant insurance isn’t “worth it” since you don’t own the property. However, there are a many things tenant insurance can cover that you may not have considered:

Contents coverage

Tenant insurance can cover your personal belongings, such as furniture, books, electronics and clothes. You may not think your belongings have a lot of value, but as we mentioned before - imagine they were all damaged at once – could you afford to replace all of it?

Plus – tenant insurance can also cover you if your belongings are stolen while you’re travelling.

Living expenses

If you are unable to live in your rental unit for a period of time, tenant insurance can cover the cost of your temporary accommodations. For example, if there is a fire or flood that causes extensive damage to your rental unit, tenant insurance can cover the cost of a hotel while the damage is repaired. It can also cover related expenses such as transportation and meals.

Personal liability

Tenant insurance can provide personal liability coverage in case you are sued for accidental damage or injury. You might think that no one who comes to your home would ever sue you, but here’s an example: if you have a party, and your friend brings a date who slips and falls inside your unit, they could decide to sue you. Even if the claim doesn’t have merit, you may still need to pay for injuries sustained or hire a lawyer to fight the case. These costs can add up quickly. Tenant insurance can help cover those costs.

Is tenant insurance required by law?

Unlike other types of insurance, tenant insurance is not required by law. However, we suggest you consider paying a few dollars a month rather than avoid having to purchase all the belongings in your unit at once if they are damaged or stolen.

In some cases, you may not have a choice! Some landlords require tenant insurance as part of the lease agreement. Read your lease carefully and discuss with your landlord if tenant insurance is required. If you fail to get tenant insurance even though it’s required in the terms of your lease, you risk being evicted.

How to save on tenant insurance

Tenant insurance is much more affordable than other types of insurance like auto. However, here are a few tips and trick that can help you save:

  • Pay annually instead of monthly. Some insurance companies offer a discount if you pay in one transaction.
  • Bundle your tenant insurance with other policies such as car insurance.
  • Work with an insurance broker! They’ll take the time to get to know you and understand your specific circumstances. As insurance experts, they’ll be able to advise you on the exact policy and coverage that makes sense for you.

Common myths about tenant insurance

Myth one: Tenant insurance isn’t worth the price

Myth busted: Tenant insurance usually costs about $20 - $30 per month. That’s less than $1 per day - well worth the cost of replacing all your belongings if they are damaged or legal fees if you are sued.

Myth two: Your landlord’s insurance has you covered

Myth busted: Your landlord’s insurance will cover the physical property itself, including the grounds. It will not cover your personal belongings or personal liability.

Contact BrokerLink for tenant insurance

BrokerLink can help you find tenant insurance that provides you with great coverage at a great rate. It’s easy to get in touch with us:

Get a quote [phone]

FAQs for Guide to Tenant Insurance

What should I include in a home contents inventory list?

When purchasing tenant insurance, you may be asked to estimate the value of your belongings. Creating a home contents inventory list can help with this. On this list, include things like furniture, electronics, books, décor, lighting, kitchen tools and appliances and clothing.

What are the most common items that have special coverage limits?

You may need additional coverage for valuable items, such as jewellery, musical instruments and rare collections.

Is tenant insurance mandatory in Canada?

Tenant insurance is not mandatory in Canada. However, your landlord may require it as a term of your lease. In this case, you’ll need to get tenant insurance to avoid eviction.