Renter’s insurance is recommended for individuals who rent their homes, but what does renters insurance cover? And more specifically, does it cover fire damage?
Renter’s insurance is similar to homeowners insurance, but it’s for individuals and families who rent their homes instead of purchasing them. You’ll need homeowner’s insurance instead if you’ve purchased your home.
Renter’s insurance is designed to compensate you for losing personal belongings due to different types of damages, including fire damage.
Now, you don’t need to worry about damage to the property you’re renting. Your landlord is responsible for the property; it’s up to them to purchase their own insurance coverage. Renter’s insurance covers what your landlord isn’t responsible for: your personal belongings.
The Type of Fires That Renter’s Insurance Covers
For the renter’s insurance to cover your losses, the event that destroyed your belongings needs to have been covered by your renter’s insurance. Qualifying events generally include fire, smoke, theft, storms, hail, and lightning.
Other events like floods aren’t included in renter’s insurance, but you can purchase coverage through a policy specifically designed for flood damage. Electrical fires, stove fires, cigarettes, and candles that are left burning too long are all examples of fire damage that renter’s insurance will cover.
Other events, such as a wildfire or a neighbor’s fire that spreads to your home, should also be covered.
Unfortunately, if you live in an area where natural disasters are common, premiums will be pricey since floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, and earthquakes are all very costly to repair. Another reason is that natural disasters aren’t part of basic coverage and already cost more, increasing the price of your premium.
What Will Renter’s Insurance Replace?
Renter’s insurance works by compensating you for your losses. Your personal items have estimated values that your insurance company will honor.
You won’t have an insurance company representative come to your door with replacements for all your goods. Instead, you’ll be compensated with money, usually via a check mailed to you or a direct deposit to your debit card.
Your insurance policy will determine how much you’ll be compensated. For example, you could have $10,000 in damages, but your policy only covers up to $8,500. You’ll pay out of pocket for replacing anything that exceeds $8,500.
When selecting your policy, you’ll want to choose a plan equivalent to the value of your possessions so that you’ll be compensated for all your belongings if you need to use your renter’s insurance. There are many insurance providers with tiers of coverage from which you can choose.
What Is Covered Under Renter’s Insurance
Renter’s insurance will cover most of your personal belongings. This includes clothing, furniture, appliances, shelving, cabinetry, flooring, etc. Your individual policy will break down your belongings into categories and show you how much you’ll be given to cover those losses.
Sometimes, fire damage is bad enough to necessitate relocation. This is covered under “loss of use” or “additional living expenses,” depending on your individual insurance policy.
Temporary or permanent relocation may be required, depending on the severity of the damage. In some cases, you can repair damages and return to your home once those repairs are completed. In other cases, the cost of repairing the damage would exceed the value of your home, necessitating finding a new home.
What Isn’t Covered Under Renter’s Insurance
You’ll want to check your policy to see if art and jewelry are covered. Many policies don’t cover these, so if it’s important to you, you may need to call your insurance company and add art and jewelry to your coverage. Just keep in mind that this will increase your policy’s premium.
Art and jewelry coverage usually excludes high-end electronics, special jewelry, furs, fine arts, firearms, specialty bikes, and cash. Suppose you want to ensure that a piece of jewelry or a specific electronic item is covered under your insurance. In that case, you can add it to your insurance coverage with a “personal article” endorsement or add-on rider.
Cash Value vs. Replacement Cost
Most insurance policies cover $20,000 to $30,000 of personal loss and will cover the replacement costs or the cash value. Say you purchased a $1200 computer that was destroyed by fire damage. Instead of being given $1200, your insurance company will cover the replacement cost for a computer of the same quality. That could cost less, the same, or more.
The replacement cost is usually worth more than the actual cash value of your possessions. For example, if your computer is several years old, the value would have depreciated from its use, reducing its monetary value. The amount you’d get for the computer likely wouldn’t be enough to purchase a new computer or a computer of like quality.
So, as you can see, receiving the replacement cost for your personal loss is much better than receiving the actual cash value, although the actual cash value is better than nothing.
Call Utah Disaster Cleanup to Restore Your Home From Fire Damage
Fire damage coverage is essential since you never know what could happen. If there’s a fire, you’ll have insurance to replace your belongings and get back to normal as quickly as possible. Without that coverage, you could be left without some of the essential items you need.
Of course, if you’re in temporary housing, you’ll want to return home as quickly as possible. That’s where we come in.
Utah Disaster Cleanup has decades of experience restoring homes from damage. If your home’s damage isn’t beyond repair, we’ll work with your insurance company to quickly restore your home from the fire damage and any accompanying water damage, mold remediation, or biohazard cleanup.
We offer 24/7 emergency services. Call us at 435.512.1584, or contact us through our website to schedule your fire damage restoration services. Let Utah Disaster Cleanup restore your home!