Renter’s insurance: Your lifeline back to normal

By Higginbotham on April 13 , 2016


A three-alarm fire injures one tenant and destroys 10 units in a Dallas apartment complex. A two-alarm fire destroys a southwest Houston apartment complex. Twelve units are damaged in a Mesquite apartment fire. And a four-alarm fire damages multiple units at an apartment complex in northwest Dallas.

These are just a few of the dozens of apartment fires here in Texas so far this year. It happens with staggering frequency across the country every year, and according to FEMA statistics, Texas had the highest number of fire deaths in 2013, the last year statistics are available.

Renters have risks too.

To some, renting might seem like a care-free living solution. No mortgage payments. No homeowner’s insurance. No property taxes. No lawn to mow or sidewalk to shovel. But renting doesn’t protect you from fires, natural disasters, burglary and other risks.

What if another tenant accidentally starts a fire that ends up destroying multiple units – including yours – and you lose everything you own? Unless you have the financial resources to replace everything and get your life back to normal immediately, that tragedy now becomes double jeopardy. You’ve lost everything, and you have nothing to start over with.

Getting back to normal – one of the best reasons to have renter’s insurance.

Losing everything you own in a fire, flood, tornado or other disaster is tragic and traumatic. But having renters insurance can soften the blow by providing you with the financial resources to replace your lost possessions. Renters insurance also provides several other coverages to give you crucial financial protection. It generally covers:

  • Personal possessions such as your clothes, furniture, electronics, etc., up to your coverage limit
  • Personal liability in case you’re ever sued and found legally responsible for an injury or property damage
  • Medical payments for medical expenses if a visitor gets hurt in an accident at your place
  • Additional living expenses such as temporary living expenses if your place is damaged and becomes uninhabitable

Don’t have renter’s insurance? Make sure you’re not avoiding it because of these myths.

Those who rent but don’t carry renters insurance have various reasons for not buying the coverage. Too often, those reasons are merely myths. Here are three of the most common:

  • “I don't have enough stuff to need renters insurance." Take a complete inventory of everything you own and calculate the replacement cost. You might be surprised at how expensive it would be to get your life back to normal without any insurance.
  • "If there’s a fire, my landlord’s insurance will cover the damages." In most cases, the landlord’s insurance policy only protects the building itself, not the contents (your stuff). Even if your landlord owns your refrigerator and it breaks down and spoils all of your food, replacing that food is your responsibility.
  • "Renters insurance is too expensive." Actually, renter’s insurance is very affordable. For about the price of having a pizza delivered once a month, renters insurance can protect your personal belongings and protect you from medical and legal expenses associated with an accident in your rental.

Insist on a “replacement cost” policy.

Higginbotham offers replacement cost renter’s insurance policies, which are preferable because they cover what it costs to replace your items today – not the actual amount you paid when you purchased the items minus depreciation, which could be considerably less. If you lose everything, will you have the financial resources to get your life back to normal? Contact Higginbotham about renter’s insurance today.


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Tags: Home & Auto


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