6 Reasons Low-Cost Renters Insurance Is a Winning Decision in Louisiana and Alabama
You don’t own the place in which you live, meaning you’re renting your house, apartment, condo, or you have another living arrangement. If your Louisiana or Alabama place of residence was lost or damaged in a fire, by theft, or via other calamities, it wouldn’t cost you a penny in repairs. What could you possibly need insurance for in such a situation?
Your doubts about the need for having this sort of coverage are understandable — until you look seriously into the number of ways having low-cost renters insurance can save your bottom line and make life a whole lot less stressful.
Why Do I Need Renters Insurance?
Low-cost renters insurance covers your personal possessions, pays your short-term housing expenses if you need to be temporarily relocated, and keeps you safe from personal liability, among other benefits.
You certainly don’t want to see anything bad happen to your rental house, apartment, condo, duplex, or other unit. But if anything does happen, it’s your landlord, not you, who’s responsible for fixing the roof, repairing the heating system, replacing locks, or even bulldozing the entire place and taking a full loss if it comes to that.
Nonetheless, there are a whole lot of bottom-line reasons to buy a renters insurance policy. Here are six of them.
1. Renters Insurance Protects Your Stuff
Of course, you don’t own the ceiling, walls, floors, HVAC, plumbing, and electrical systems that surround and incorporate your living space. But just about everything else in the place is yours.
Think about the damage a fire would do to your personal belongings. Not only the flames but also the smoke and the water damage caused by putting out the fire. It would prove disastrous to your furniture and furnishings, your clothing and accessories, and any electronics.
You would suddenly be left with potentially nothing — and have to start over; tally up the damage and figure out how many thousands of dollars you’d have to spend to replace virtually everything you own and need. Do you have that kind of money in the bank right now? Most of us don’t. You’d have to prioritize what you must have immediately and replace the rest over time.
Do you need to buy a new work computer with your next paycheck or can that wait until you’ve shopped for at least a minimal wardrobe?
With renters insurance, you can quickly be reimbursed for everything you lost and go about the job of replacing what you so desperately need without having to make difficult choices.
2. Renters Insurance Enables You to Live Where You Want
You think of the cost as being the biggest barrier to signing a rental agreement for the place where you’d most like to live, but that’s not actually the only factor that might keep you out of the rental space of your dreams. Some landlords demand that their tenants have renters insurance. If you don’t have coverage, you won’t get the space. Simple as that.
If your landlord is likely to demand proof of rental insurance anyway, you might as well get the best coverage.
3. Renters Insurance Insures You Against the Mistakes of Others
Suppose you do everything right. You don’t smoke, much less smoking in bed. You’re careful to never leave the kitchen when you have the stove or oven in use. You only have candles lit when you’re in the same room, and you don’t have young children who might play with matches.
But none of that sensible living is worth much if you have neighbors in the same building or attached housing who aren’t as committed to safety. One fire mistake in one unit of a building can result in smoke or water damage or even the complete destruction of other units — including yours.
And what if your landlord hasn’t stayed on top of all needed repairs, and faulty wiring results in major fire destruction?
That’s why you can make the case that renters insurance protects you and your things, not only from your own mistakes and mishaps, but also from the actions of others.
4. Renters Insurance Lets You Keep the Business Going, Practically Uninterrupted
The global pandemic changed practically everything about the way we do business. Before COVID-19, many business owners were reluctant to adapt to letting employees work remotely. However, the 2020 lockdowns removed the element of choice. If they wanted their business to go on without interruption, management would have to let people work from their homes or the nearest Wi-Fi-connected coffeehouses. They had to look at how their people worked rather than where.
The new workstyle was so successful that many employees still work from their homes. Others have started their own businesses from their kitchen table or spare bedroom.
If you work from home for even part of the time, you could own expensive electronic devices and equipment that would leave your business crippled if the goods couldn’t be immediately replaced when damaged, destroyed, or stolen.
With renters insurance, your degree of business disruption can be kept to a minimum. Your bosses, coworkers, clients, or customers would barely know you were down before you were back in action again.
5. Renters Insurance Helps Protect Your Family’s Peace of Mind
Let’s face it, a fire or other major upheaval in your family’s life is upsetting enough. Especially to the young ones. If you don’t have renters insurance and you lose your rental home for any reason, major or minor, you have others to worry about.
If you lived alone and you got temporarily displaced from your rented space until it could be repaired, you could probably hang out on a friend’s couch for a little while. Or even live in your car.
But as the head of a family, you might have young ones who will have a much harder time with major disruption than you would have on your own. You have to find a place to live that has actual beds and bedrooms and is close to schools or daycare centers or relatives.
This takes money. If you have renters insurance, your coverage can pay for temporary housing while your rental space is being repaired or rehabbed following a damaging event. Think about how important this might be to a family that’s already undergone trauma from the disruption.
Renters insurance helps get not only you — but your entire family — back on your feet when everything familiar has been turned totally upside down.
6. Renters Insurance Helps Protect You from Liability
Let’s say someone pays you a visit at your rental home and slips and falls on the ice that’s collected on your porch steps or driveway. It’s not a very friendly thing to do, but say your guest sues you for hospitalization and treatment costs and for the unpaid workdays they missed.
Renters insurance might not be able to repair the damage to your friendship, but it will likely cover such a lawsuit. This is just one more way your finances can be protected with such a policy.
But How Much Does Renters Insurance Cost?
This might be the best news of all. Renters insurance is quite affordable. A typical policy might cost you all of $20 a month for as much as $50,000 in coverage.
As with most similar policies, renters insurance can be purchased at varying deductible levels. Your deductible is the amount of money you’ll pay out of your own pocket before the insurance company pays. So if you have a $500 deductible, and a burglary causes $1,500 in losses, you’ll pay the first $500, and then your insurance company will pick up the remaining $1,000.
Actual Cash Value vs. Replacement Cost
One more financial decision you must make, with the help of your insurance agent, is the type of low-cost renters insurance coverage you want. For that, it’s important to know the difference between actual cash value and replacement cost.
Actual cash value policies reimburse for the present value of the items lost. If your six-year-old computer must be replaced, your insurer would settle for what that same older computer is worth today.
Replacement cost coverage pays for what you would have to pay to replace that same make and model of the computer with the updated version.
A replacement cost policy will always cost a little more than one that reimburses with actual cost value because your settlement will be more generous. But the rates are generally only about 10% more, so it might be worth the small additional charge of a replacement cost policy.
Contact USAgencies to Learn More about Cheap Renters Insurance
Outlined above are six reasons why low-cost renters insurance is sure to be the right decision for Louisiana and Alabama renters. An independent insurance agent at USAgencies can answer all of your questions and help you find highly affordable coverage that’s right for your circumstances.