Does Renter's Insurance Cover Accidental Damage?

A thorough renter's insurance policy can protect you from financial ruin.

A thorough renter's insurance policy can protect you from financial ruin.

Renter's insurance policies are a relatively low-cost, broad protection for people who rent a home or apartment. Plans significantly vary, so the only way to know what your policy covers is to talk to your provider. However, it is fairly common for renter's insurance policies to cover accidental damage.

Damage in Your Home

Liability coverage is a key element of renter's insurance policies. This component includes protection if someone else is in your home and you or a family member damages their property. For instance, if someone brings over a new video system and it is accidentally broken, your renter's policy might cover the cost to repair or replace the system.

Damage to the Home

More commonly, your renter's policy typically covers accidents that occur in the home that damage the property. If you leave a candle burning that starts a fire, your renter's plan normally covers the costs of the repairs. In fact, your plan may cover the repair costs to neighboring units in an apartment building. Some policies even pay for you to stay at a hotel while your home is repaired if the damage is extensive enough.

Your Stuff

One of the main reasons to get a renter's insurance policy is to protect your valuables. In fact, renter's insurance is usually your best insurance for your own furniture and valuables. If your valuable are damaged, your renter's policy normally pays for the replacements or repairs. In many cases, your plan even covers damage to personal items you take with you on a trip or away from home.

Unintentional and Accidental

The key words in a typical policy are "unintentional" and "accidental." Naturally, if you intentionally cause damage to property, your policy usually doesn't provide benefits. The good news is that your policy even extends beyond accidents where you cause damage to others outside the home. Parents of active kids often get stuck in a tough stuff when a neighbor's window is broken or other property is damaged. Your renter's insurance policy usually helps out in these situations as well.


About the Author

Neil Kokemuller has been an active business, finance and education writer and content media website developer since 2007. He has been a college marketing professor since 2004. Kokemuller has additional professional experience in marketing, retail and small business. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Iowa State University.

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