The number of renters across the country has reached an all-time high with more than 43 million renter-occupied units, according to figures from the Census Bureau. However, a poll from the Insurance Information Institute shows a vast majority gap in the sector, as only 41% of renters carry insurance.
The figure stands in stark contrast to 95% of homeowners who carry homeowners’ insurance policies.
“Many renters underestimate both the value and affordability of renters’ insurance,” said Mendi Riddle, vice president of product and pricing for Nationwide’s personal lines. “Not only does renters’ insurance provide coverage for belongings inside the residence should those items be stolen, destroyed or damaged, but the coverage may also extend to personal items renters keep inside their vehicle. Additionally, renters’ insurance helps pay for covered damage or bodily injury to others caused by an accident that may occur at their residence.”
Nationwide shot down the myth that a landlord’s insurance policy will cover a renter’s personal belongings in the event of fire or theft, as they typically don’t extend to a renter’s possessions.
According to Nationwide’s claims data, the following were the most common renters’ insurance claims submitted by its members in 2017:
- Theft (from dwelling or vehicle)
- Water damage (non-weather related)
- Fire and smoke damage
- Wind related claims
“Having to replace possessions such as clothing, furniture and electronics can be very expensive should they be suddenly lost due to a fire or other tragic event,” said Riddle. “Renters’ insurance provides peace of mind allowing renters to keep their lives on track should a major setback occur.”