Unfortunately, many renters believe that their property is covered by their landlord’s insurance policy and they have little or no recourse to recover when a disaster strikes. Renters may be disappointed to learn that earthquake or flood damage is not usually covered by renters insurance. However confusing or tedious it is to navigate someone outside the realm of insurance policies, people in these areas should be as familiar with their policy limits as they are with their monthly budget. Independent and knowledgeable agents are always available to answer any questions you may have about renters insurance.
Read your policy and ask your provider a lot of questions so you don’t realize at a time when you really need your insurance to do it for you. While people on the West Coast are familiar with wildfire safety, the residents of Tornado Alley are no strangers to the aftermath of tornadoes, and the Southeast navigates hurricane season with a lot of experience, the changing nature of weather patterns requires tenants to prepare for what unexpected. While most renters insurance policies cover wind damage, some companies in coastal areas affected by hurricanes exclude it from coverage Unfortunately, renters insurance policies generally exclude insect infestations of any kind, including bed bugs, cockroaches and other insects, as well as rodent infestations. Having a general idea of how a tenant’s budget would be affected by a disaster or simply the insurance itself is key.
Unfortunately, most renters will suffer after a tornado, as only 43% have renters insurance, according to the Insurance Research Council. It’s also worth noting that renters protected by hurricanes can get help if their home structure is first damaged by the storm and water gets in as a result, but flood damage alone may not be covered. He has seen people disappointed when floods disqualify tenants from receiving payments for damaged or lost personal items. Tenants are covered by the cost of living in temporary accommodation until you recover, he says.
I spoke with Yael Wissner-Levy of Lemonade, a licensed insurance company for homeowners, renters and pets, about the surprising things renters insurance will cover after disaster strikes. If you sign a lease in a high-risk area of the country, it’s worth asking and understanding your landlord’s insurance policy. But don’t let any renters insurance policy lead you to a false sense of security you need to do your homework.