For as little as $100 to $150 per year you can buy a Renters Insurance policy that will give you $20,000 in content coverage and liability coverage of $100,000. You can increase your the dollar amount of coverage as needed.
As property managers in the Iowa City, Coralville and North Liberty areas we have seen many instances where those with renters insurance have been treated like Kings and Queens and those without have been left to fend for themselves. In the case of the leaking water heater in a Coralville property the tenant’s insurance company cleaned up the water, replaced those items beyond repair and picked up, cleaned and returned the repairable items. Not just clothing but furniture and electronics too. They even paid for a motel room until the tenant was able to return to the unit. In the case of the burst pipe the landlord’s insurance company pursued the tenant who had turned off the heat and recovered damages they had paid to the owner of the property. If the tenant would have had Renters Insurance their insurance company would have reimbursed the owner’s insurance company and the tenant would not have had to pay out of pocket. The tenant in the flooded unit below who had no insurance was left literally out in the cold.
We have had three instances of fire where Renters Insurance has played a big part in tenant’s lives. One was caused by a tenant, one caused by a tenant’s friend and one caused by a short in the building wiring. In the one caused by the electrical problem the tenant wished to return to their apartment after it was reconstructed. Their insurance company not only replaced all of their belongings they put him up in a motel for three months until the building was rebuilt.
The fire started by a tenant’s friend (smoking in the garage) was in a four unit building which was completely destroyed. There was next to nothing that was salvageable. Two of the tenants had insurance and two did not. The two who did were put up in nice motels paid for by the insurance companies until they could find a place to move to and they moved in with new possessions. The other two were put up for a couple of nights by the Red Cross and then turned loose. The insurance company pursued the tenant whose friend had started the fire for reimbursement for damages.
The third was also a fire started by careless smoking. The tenant had insurance and was put up in a motel until the house was rebuilt and their possessions were replaced. The renter’s insurance company reimbursed the owners insurance company so the owners company did not have to pursue the tenant for their liability in starting the fire.
Many homeowner policies that student’s parents have will cover you while you are in temporary housing like dormitories. Those companies don’t consider temporary housing to be off campus apartments and houses where the student would have a year lease in their own name. This is often a misunderstanding that parents have.
Most of your preferred insurance companies will give you a discount if you already have auto insurance with them and offer options like jewelry coverage. Several items like jewelry need to be identified and additional coverage obtained at the time of taking out the policy. Jewelry coverage could also cover mysterious disappearance (typically with no deductable) where you may lose a stone from a ring or necklace.
As you can see from the situations above the cost of the premium went a long way in helping people keep their lives together.