Renters Insurance – Why Do You Need It?
In today’s challenging economy, it’s no longer simply students who are sharing rent, many adults are sharing accommodations for a host of reasons. Yet amongst this already vulnerable group, according to Canadian Insurance Top Broker magazine, 41 percent of renters with roommates don’t have home or tenant insurance, and thirty percent of renters share their homes with unrelated roommates.
This can invite all sorts of unwanted risks into your life – if you are moving into a house, apartment, condo or townhouse, renter’s or tenant’s insurance should be one of your top priorities. At HDF Insurance, our tenant’s insurance covers replacement costs for your contents, protects you from personal liability if someone is injured in your home, and can pay for temporary accommodations if you are misplaced because of a covered peril.
Renters vs Home Owners
A survey of over 1,500 renters in Alberta, British Columbia, and Ontario revealed that renters are eight times more likely to go without home insurance than homeowners. Alberta had the highest percentage at 34 percent according to Square One Insurance, who released the survey 20 March 2017. The top reasons why renters choose to have roommates for those surveyed were:
- To help with rent, 63 percent;
- For companionship, 25 percent; and,
- For added security, 7 percent.
According to Statistics Canada, residential property values across the country increased by 11 percent in 2016 and the average cost to rent a two-bedroom apartment continues to rise every year across Canada, making it even harder for first-time buyers to enter the real estate market. It may also lead to these three common misconceptions about home insurance:
- Landlord’s insurance protects renters – it doesn’t. In fact, landlord insurance specifically excludes the personal property and liability exposures of renters. Renters need a home insurance policy to protect them.
- Home insurance is too expensive for renters – affordable policies are available in annual and monthly payment options, increase the standard deductible can reduce cost.
- It’s difficult for renters to get home insurance – maybe, especially those living with roommates. For those living with unrelated roommates, you can expect to pay a little more for the added exposure. You can also expect to be assessed a higher deductible for crime-related losses, like belongings are stolen or mysteriously disappear.
Rental Insurance and Roommates
When applying for tenant insurance, you should be prepared to describe how many roommates you have. If you have just one roommate, then you can often be insured under a single policy. If you have multiple roommates, then each of you will need to purchase separate policies. Most policies automatically cover family members at no extra cost.
With a greater pool of roommates to choose from, it is now more important than ever that you do your due diligence when finding and selecting a roommate. A bad roommate can cause countless headaches and financial stress. Here are the top tips to finding the right roommate:
- Be upfront about your lifestyle and ask a potential roommate to describe theirs – morning people and night owls may not be the best combination for example.
- Ask potential roommates in-depth questions about their work, income, and references to avoid future conflicts.
- After obtaining permission, check their credit score, employment history, and rental history. You can also browse their social media profiles on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.
If you have any questions about tenant’s insurance, our rates or for a quote, don’t hesitate to contact HDF Insurance in Edmonton Central at 780-488-0921, Edmonton North at 780-437-7264, Whitecourt at 780-778-8828, or toll-free at 1-800-567-2048 today for insurance that offers you protection, security and peace of mind.