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How to Buy Renters Insurance

It isn't only homeowners who need to protect their belongings from fire, theft, or other damage. Renters can, and should, get insurance as well.


  • Step 1: Evaluate your belongings Estimate the value of your belongings. This will help determine the level of insurance to purchase.
  • Step 2: Itemize everything if possible If possible, itemize everything, noting value and purchase date. This will make filing a claim much easier.
  • Step 3: Cash or replacement value There are two types of insurance coverage available, cash or replacement value. Cash coverage takes into account the age of your belongings, while replacement value covers the actual cost of replacing items.
  • TIP: When selecting coverage, consider an item's value to you, as well as the ease of replacing it.
  • Step 4: Look at specific policies Your car or health insurance may also offer renters insurance, but be sure to shop around. Your current company may offer discounts, but they aren't the only game in town.
  • Step 5: Consider any extra floaters you may need Consider buying a floater, which provides extra coverage. Many policies limit the payout value for items in a particular category, such as jewelry or electronics.
  • Step 6: Ask for discounts Check for discounts. If your apartment has a security system, that may qualify you for a discount, as could smoke detectors or high-quality door locks.
  • Step 7: Read your policy and understand it Just because you have a policy doesn't mean everything you own is covered in any situation. Does your policy include flood or tornado damage? Be sure to find out.
  • Step 8: Don't be afraid to ask questions Don't be afraid to ask questions. The more you know, the better decision you can make.
  • FACT: Renters insurance can cost as little as $12 per month.

You Will Need

  • A rented apartment or house
  • Belongings you want to protect

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