Renters Insurance

It’s Time to Find Affordable Insurance Solutions

Why you need home insurance even if you’re just renting

A fire sweeps through the rental units of a multi-family home. A major overnight storm with hurricane-like winds knocks trees into homes and apartment buildings. More than 40 Central Massachusetts homes are broken into, burglarized, and vandalized. If these stories sound familiar to you it’s because they are all incidents that recently occurred right here in Leominster, Gardner, Westminster, and surrounding Worcester metro area communities.

As your local insurance professional, the ABM team would like you to take a moment to consider what would have happened if you and your family had been victims in this story. Whether it’s a fire, a weather-related event, or a theft, are you confident that you would have the financial resources to pay for all the expenses related to these unfortunate incidents?

If you have renters insurance, then the answer would be a strong “Yes!” But, without the proper policy in place, you would be left paying for everything out of your own pocket, including the costs of finding alternate housing and replacing all your damaged or stolen belongings. It’s critical to know that your landlord’s policy won’t cover you and your personal property in these situations. Nor will it provide you with any financial protection from liability claims in the event that someone injures themselves in your apartment.

By working with a local, knowledgeable insurance agent, like ABM, you can get expert help with not only understanding your renters insurance requirements, but also with securing affordable and comprehensive coverage. Our team will make sure that your insurance protects you against losses, repairs, and legal claims that otherwise could cost you thousands of dollars out of your own pocket.

Now that your apartment is set up just the way you like it, let ABM protect it

Whether your place has a modern and contemporary look or is filled with secondhand and vintage items, we know that you’ve invested time, energy, thought, and probably a decent amount of money into making your rental feel both homey and stylish. Now, we encourage you to take a moment to look around your home and imagine how challenging – and expensive – it would be to replace every last item if something disastrous were to happen. From your computer and sports equipment, to your clothes and bedding, to your dishes and wall art, you would likely have to spend thousands of dollars to set up your whole apartment again from scratch.

But not if you have renters insurance. This type of insurance policy will provide coverage in case any of your possessions are destroyed by fire, smoke, lightning, vandalism, theft, windstorm, burst pipes, falling objects like trees, and any other peril listed by your insurance company. Even gifts that you’ve bought, but haven’t delivered yet, and things that you’ve borrowed from someone else, are typically covered under a standard renters policy.

In addition to protecting your belongings, your renters insurance policy also includes the following coverage:

Many people are surprised that renters insurance covers all of this. Even more unexpected, though, is how affordable this broad coverage can be. The average cost of renters insurance is about $15-20 per month for coverage that ranges from $30,000 to $50,000. Plus, there are several ways to save even more on renters insurance. For example, you can get a discount for bundling your renters insurance and auto insurance policies with the same carrier.

If you’ve been renting but haven’t bothered to get renters insurance yet, or if you did get a policy but you’re not confident it’s the best coverage or competitively priced, then it’s time to work with the ABM team. We will be glad to review your current policy, and/or get you a quote for a new one, to ensure that you are not putting all of your stuff – and your hard-earned money – at risk. Contact ABM today for help protecting the most important things and people in your life.

Some Important Questions Answered About Renters Insurance

The many reasons you should have renters insurance seem pretty straightforward. However, there are some situations that make getting the right coverage a little trickier, like if you have a roommate or if you have any expensive items. But, don’t worry, the ABM team is always available to explain everything you need and want to know about renters insurance. While speaking to you in person or over the phone is the best way for us to guide you through the insurance process, we wanted to give you a head start by providing some answers to common renters insurance questions here.

How do you know if you have enough renters insurance coverage?

We always encourage our renting clients to start by making a detailed list of their belongings along with an estimated value. While you could avoid doing this home inventory by taking a guess at what this number would be, it’s important to note that the majority of people tend to grossly underestimate the value of what they own, and thus choose a coverage number that leaves them significantly underinsured. That’s why we strongly recommend you take a bit more time to add up the cost of replacing everything in your apartment. Of course, you can do this the old-fashioned way with pencil and paper, but, as with most everything else today, technology can save you an enormous amount of time in this process. You can take photos on your smartphone or digital camera, or you can videotape your entire home with these same devices, and/or you can use a mobile app, like Evernote, to create and store a room-by-room record of your belongings. In addition to the replacement cost, the key information to include is what’s pictured, where you bought it, the make and model, and whatever else you think might be important for your insurer to know in order to replace or reimburse you for this item in the event of a burglary, fire or other covered disaster. With your solid estimate in hand, ABM will be able to help you evaluate the best renters insurance options, available to you through our top-quality insurance partners, for protecting all your personal possessions.

Does renters insurance protect your most expensive items?

Your renters insurance may include some coverage for high-priced items, like a new computer, a musical instrument, or expensive jewelry, but it’s typically capped at $1,000 to $1,500. This could leave you paying hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars out of your own pocket to replace these valuable items with the same or similar items. There is an easy solve, though, that will ensure that you can get reimbursed for the amount it would cost you to replace any of these pricey items – consider buying a scheduled personal property endorsement. This very affordable added coverage insures your valuable items for their full amount, without subtracting depreciation, and covers a broad range of losses, including if you accidentally lose a valuable. If you own some expensive items, first have all of them appraised, and then sit down with your ABM professional to get advice on how best to safeguard these precious belongings.

Will renters insurance cover a roommate or domestic partner?

If you have a renters insurance policy, it does not extend to your roommate unless this person is also listed on your policy. While some insurers do allow renters to add other individuals to their renters policy, our general recommendation is that each roommate purchase their own insurance policy. Even though adding your roommate to your policy might seem like a good idea, mainly because it can reduce the total cost the two of you pay for insurance, this relatively small savings may not be worth all the other potential hassles, like splitting the bill and filing claims together. Plus, whenever a claim is made against your insurance policy, whether by you or your roommate, it will be reported to the Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (CLUE), which is a resource that insurers check when determining the price for personal auto and property policies, including renters insurance. Number of claims and severity are two key things that insurance companies look at when setting your rates, so, if you are the main policyholder, any claims made, whether by you or your roommate, could actually end up equating to hundreds of dollars in higher homeowners and auto insurance rates for you for years to come. If you still want to look into adding your roommate or domestic partner to your policy, it’s best to consult with a knowledgeable, local insurance professional, like ABM, who can help you explore your options and who can share the pros and cons of having joint coverage.

It’s your life, let ABM protect it with the right coverage at the right price