Fires, floods and thieves, oh my! A renter’s possessions can be protected from all these things and more, but only if they have renter’s insurance.
Renter’s insurance is recommended for anyone renting a home, townhouse, condo or apartment and covers any belonging inside, according to Allstate Insurance Agent Naoma Eisenbach. She said she believes that renter’s insurance is a must for anyone who rents. However, most students say they don’t want to spend the extra money on the premiums, and would take their chances, something experts warn against.
“It also includes liability coverage,” Eisenbach said. “If someone gets hurt at your place, it takes care of people who may sue you, and you can choose liability depending on what your net worth is.”
The first step to obtaining renter’s insurance is assessing the worth of the personal belongings that would be covered under the insurance. Once a quote is acquired from an insurance agency, a deductible (the amount which the renter would pay out of pocket should a disaster take place) must be chosen.
According to Eisenbach, renter’s insurance is generally inexpensive and can save the renter a lot of trouble.
“Say you have $30,000 worth of contents and a $500 deductible, you’d only have to pay about $150 a year,” Eisenbach said.
Some students, however, have never considered getting renter’s insurance.
Eleanor Wedum, 21, a junior English literature major, said she hadn’t heard of renter’s insurance.
“In theory, it sounds like a good idea,” Wedum said. “ But I don’t have too many valuables I’d want to save.”
Rick Burger, owner of Burger Property Investments, recalled an incident that prompted him to recommend renter’s insurance to his tenants. In a twobedroom townhouse, a girl lit a candle in her room. She had the window open, and a breeze blew the curtains inside, over the candle flame.
“The curtains caught on fire, and pretty soon half her room was up in flames,” Burger said. “Her roommate’s things were affected too, not just her own belongings.”
The girls living in the townhouse did not have renter’s insurance and lost most of their belongings due to smoke damage, Burger said.
“Many landlords require their tenants to have it, but I believe it’s a freedom of choice,” Burger said. “It is definitely a good idea to get renter’s insurance because you never know what will happen.”
Burger acknowledges, however, that insurance can be an unnecessary drain on a student’s pocketbook but still says he thinks it’s a good idea.
“There are a lot of people who don’t have it who end up needing it,” Burger said. Dorothy Fournet, 20, a sophomore English major, said she has better things to spend her money on.
“I’m too cheap to get it,” Fournet said. “I’d rather buy a month or two’s worth of groceries than spend money on insurance that I most likely won’t end up needing.”
Overall, these students agree that, although the cost is a factor, it would probably save them a lot of trouble.
“I’m satisfied with being a careless and haphazard person, but I don’t foresee any fires or floods happening where I live,” Fournet said. “But, I admit, it’s probably a good thing to have, if nothing else for peace of mind.”
Article by CU Independent Staff Writer Taylor Coughlin.