What does Renters Insurance Cover?
Much like home insurance, renters insurance includes coverage for:
If ever a guest hurts themselves in your unit, or an incident like a fire or a leak damages someone else’s unit, you’re rental insurance policy will be covered and that person will be covered for medical expenses and loss of income without you having to pay for it out of pocket.
The Contents of Your Unit
This includes your furniture, your clothing, your appliances, sporting equipment and anything that can be found within the confines of your apartment. The only exceptions are high-value items such as jewellery and fine art, which require a separate, specific policy.
Coverage for Additional Living Expenses
If ever something happens where you couldn’t stay in your apartment, such as smoke damage or mould cleanup, a tenant’s insurance policy would reimburse the expenses incurred from staying in a hotel while your apartment was inaccessible due to a covered incident.
Living expenses also include storage costs for your furniture and possessions, moving and displacement costs, furniture rental costs and any increased transportation costs or extra mileage.
What does tenant insurance not cover?
Renter’s insurance does not cover high value items such as jewellery or fine art because of the value limits imposed on these types of items. For these, you need to consider a separate policy to make sure these items are covered if ever something occurs.
Another thing a standard tenant’s insurance policy doesn’t cover is flood damage. This shouldn’t be confused with water damage, which is when the water source that caused the damage originated from inside the apartment, such as a faulty pipe. Flood damage needs to be added as an extra coverage. This might be a good idea if have a unit at the ground or basement level of a building.
The same thing goes for earthquake insurance. You’ll need to add it to your policy as an extra coverage. If you live in an area prone to earthquakes such as the Ottawa region, you may want to consider adding it.
An important thing to note is that renter's insurance only protects your stuff. That means your roommate is not protected under your policy and will have to apply for their own policy. Should there ever be a burglary in your apartment and both you and the person you live with have personal items stolen, only the things that belonged to you will be covered by your policy and vice versa.
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.
Actual Cash Value versus Replacement Cost: What’s the difference?
When you insure your belongings, you can choose to either insure them for their replacement cost or for their actual cash value. Replacement cost refers to what you paid for an item. If your sofa that you bought for $2000 is stolen, you will be compensated $2000 by your insurance company.
Under actual cash value, the insurance company considers depreciation when paying out for damages. If that same sofa was 10 years old and had a few rips in it, the insurance company will only pay you what the sofa is worth today.
You have to consider the value of what your insuring and the cost it would require to replace it if it were lost before deciding which option is best for you. Although replacement cost premiums may be a more expensive, they could be worth the price if you have several expensive items.
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.
Brokers you can trust
BrokerLink’s team of trained experts will help you find the renter’s insurance you need to give you peace of mind as you save money.
We find and compare insurance products from trusted providers so that you get the insurance you need at the right price. No bells and whistles. No hidden fees.
Submitting for an online quote is quick and easy, plus you’ll have the help of our support team with a simple phone call. Get a quote online today and protect your personal property.
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Frequently Asked Questions on Tenant Insurance:
What does a tenant insurance cover?
What will be covered under tenant insurance varies depending on your policy. Generally speaking, tenant insurance may provide financial reimbursement for the losses sustained from things like vandalism, theft, liability or fire. Your personal property might not be protected if you don't have any active tenant insurance policy.
Is tenant insurance mandatory?
In most cases, tenant insurance is not required by law. It might be a requirement from your landlord. In any case, tenant insurance is there to protect you from substantial losses, so it's worth considering purchasing this coverage if you don't already have it.
Why is it important to have renters insurance?
If something happens to your property as a tenant, you have no other protection if you do not have insurance in place. This means that you would have to pay out of pocket if your belongings are lost, destroyed or stolen. Many landlords require tenant insurance, so it's good peace of mind for you and can give you more options when apartment hunting. The loss of your personal property due to an accident or disaster could be substantial.
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.
For more FAQs, visit the BrokerLink FAQs page.
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