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Renters may want to consider insurance

Posted online

by David Haymes

for the Business Journal

Since most tenants do not own real property, they may feel they do not have anything to lose and do not need insurance coverage. This assumption can be costly.

Instead of thinking about what they don't have, the thinking needs to be about what they do have and what it would cost to replace it if it all just disappeared.

Whether lost to fire, theft or tornado, it costs money to replace personal property, too.

It doesn't take much to rack up $10,000 to $15,000 worth of personal property considering wardrobe, kitchen utensils, bedding, furniture, major appliances, TV, stereo, etc. That's a lot of money to come up with if it all had to be replaced

and we're just talking about the basics here.

And while a renter's policy might not cover everything a tenant owns, it sure is better than nothing.

Furthermore, renters need liability insurance as much as homeowners do.

Although they do not own the property, it is likely that they could be sued, along with the property owner, if an accident occurs.

Another example of how liability insurance can protect a renter is in the case of a pet problem.

If a renter took the family dog to the park or on vacation and the dog attacked and injured a stranger, the stranger could sue the renter for bodily injury. If found liable, the renter could be required to pay a large settlement.

Finally, the renter may incur expenses if he or she has to move out of an apartment temporarily while an apartment is being fixed due to damage caused by a covered peril, such as fire. This expense is generally covered under a renter's policy.

If you are a renter, there is a need to have coverage, and typically you can get a policy at a very reasonable rate.

If you own an apartment complex or have homes that you rent out, it is well worth it to educate your tenants on the value of having a renters insurance policy. This will enhance any relationship that you might have with your tenants and, furthermore, should help reduce tension and stress in the event of an accident or tragedy.

It is bad enough to lose what you have; not being able to replace it is even worse.

(David Haymes is the owner of Haymes Insurance Agency in Nixa.)

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