Today we’re talking about renters insurance, and here’s the gist of it: if you rent, you should have it.
Let me tell you a story.
Once upon a time, I wanted a road bike. For a couple of years I thought about getting a nice one – and everything else you need to buy with it (a helmet, bike shorts, those sorts of things). In August of 2014 I decided it was time. I had recently started a new job, and the office was right next to the Washington & Old Dominion trail. Plus, we have a locked underground garage where I could leave and lock up my bike. Having a place to store my bike and quick access to a great trail, I decided making this big purchase now made sense. I could bike most months of the year after work, getting some exercise in and enjoying the outdoors, all while letting traffic die down. Wins all around!
So, I did the research, got help from a friend and road biking expert, and made the purchase. I enjoyed biking that fall. Things were great.
Fast forward to the spring of 2015…
One morning I pulled into the underground garage, went to my typical parking space, and noticed my bike wasn’t there. I knew it must have been stolen. As much as I like to think I don’t care about stuff, I was upset (at least initially). My essentially brand new bike was gone.
BUT, I had renters insurance. And renters insurance covers your personal property EVEN if it’s not on the property you’re renting when it is stolen.*
My insurance provider was very helpful, and I received cash, deposited directly into my bank account for the amount of the property stolen (minus a little bit for depreciation). Still, all said and done, this was a big win. Except for the slight hassle, it really ended up just not being a big deal.
That money is still sitting in a high yield savings account. I guess I just couldn’t bring myself to turn around and buy another road bike. But, the cash is there for when I do decide to do so (or play more tennis again or fly back to Fiji or whatever).
So, get renters insurance! (And if you don’t need it, tell someone who does.) I’ve found it to be around $15 a month. And, if you get it through your car insurance provider you can usually benefit from a multi-policy discount.
While my provider didn’t ask me for receipts or photos, it’s a good idea to have that stuff (especially for big ticket items, just in case). Also note that especially pricey items (jewelry, expensive musical instruments, etc.) may need their OWN policy.
Make sure you understand what you’re paying for and what your policy covers.
One final note: insurance is not an investment. You pay a little money on a regular basis to protect yourself in the case of BIG events you would likely not be able to financially cover on your own. Something could happen where you lose everything in your rented property. Make sure you’re covered.
Get renters insurance. Rest easy. And Let Luc.
*At least that’s been the case in all the plans I’ve had. You’ll want to double check this.