You have done it! You are finally ready to move out on your own and you are either moving in with a buddy or getting your own apartment. The fact of the matter is that you are renting and if you are renting then you better realize that you need renters insurance.
The average young American will rent an average of three times before actually buying a home. I know I did and I learned a very hard lesson. With out going into to many details lets just say that I lost everything because I thought that I did not need renters insurance and that at worst I would be protected under my landlords policy. Boy was I wrong. Now that I am older and have actually worked in the insurance industry here is what I learned and what you need to know;
The fact is that we all have personal belongings and possessions that are valuable. Even the barest of apartments can house thousands of dollars in furniture, house wares, entertainment and computers and jewelry. What happens if you get robbed?
Did you know that according to the National Crime Prevention Council Apartments are 85% more likely to be robbed! ( http://www.protectamerica.com/news/article/410-report-nyc-apartment-renters-at-high-risk-for-burglary/ )
So the first issue you have to consider is what happens if I get robbed?
Next, in today’s society every body is suing everybody. The fact is that we live in a very litigious society. What happens if someone is in your apartment and then slips, falls and hurts themselves? What if it is just on the stair case leading to your apartment?
Second issue; what if some one gets hurt in or around my apartment?
The last issue is what happens if you are an idiot and don’t know how to use a grill or hibachi and you start a fire that causes damage to your apartment and/or your neighbors apartment?
In short it all boils down to liability and the fact is that you do not want to be left holding the bag if you wind up being liable. You also don’t want to be left holding the bag if you get robbed.
So how can you protect yourself? The simple answer is to get a renters insurance policy. You are a young adult just starting off in life and the last thing that you want to see happen is that you find yourself in a very difficult financial dilemma simply because you did not think you should get insurance or that you could not afford the insurance anyway. The reality is that renters insurance can be as low as $150 per year. That is roughly about $12.50 per month. What is more economically feasible; $12.50 per month or having to come up with thousands if not hundreds of thousands of dollars if something goes wrong?
Not all insurance policies are the same so make sure you do your research and also check into the cost of a general liability insurance policy. I have a one million dollar policy and it only costs me about $27 per month. Having that kind of protection is well worth the small amount of money I pay per month.
To put it all in perspective; I was renting an apartment with a buddy of mine and splitting the rent and I thought everything was cool. Well, he turned out to be a not so nice of a guy that started a fire on the balcony because he was not watching the grill which caused fire damage to the outside of our apartment as well as the apartment above us. Then, when we find out the landlord is suing us for the damages he winds up leaving and stealing a crap load of my stuff including my brand new 27″ television set. I was left with a half empty apartment, the full responsibility of the rent and the bill for the damages. Total cost to me at the time was around $7,500! For a young adult just starting out, that was a lot of money! Had I been smart enough to get a renters insurance policy I would have gotten $7,000 from my company due to the $500 deductible.
Live and learn! Hope you learned something.