Contents insurance for renters, sometimes referred to as ‘renters insurance’, is cover for anyone who is interested in looking after their belongings. Standard contents insurance policies will offer you varying levels of financial protection against a range of different events:
- Fire damage. The loss or damage of your belongings from accidental house fires or arson attacks would be devastating, but can be insured against. Damage due to a bushfire is also generally covered.
- Theft. This covers you for theft and damage caused by burglary or attempted burglary.
- Storm damage. Lightning, hail and heavy winds are some common examples of how a storm may damage or even destroy your contents and valuables.
- Legal liability. Should an incident occur at the property while you’re renting that leads to a court case, renters insurance provides legal liability for the tenants.
A closer look at contents insurance for renters
Above was a list of general standard inclusions (i.e. what is typically found on a policy). However, other rental insurance policies might offer greater levels of cover, including:
- Explosions. If your rental property has gas, or you’ve brought a gas BBQ with you, cover for explosions cover should definitely be something to consider.
- Water damage. Severe contents damage can stem from something as trivial as an overflowing bathtub, sink, toilet, or a leaky washing machine or dishwasher. It could also come from heavy rain runoff and storms.
- Vandalism. While vandals will likely target the exterior of your home, they may also damage your belongings. This can include outdoor furniture, gardening equipment, bicycles, etc.
- Natural disasters. Many residential areas are vulnerable to bushfires and floods, while some seaside suburbs are prone to the risk of erosion. Most policies will include tsunami or earthquake cover, but flood cover may cost extra.
- Moving house. Renters insurance can cover your items and furniture while they’re in transit, though additional terms and conditions may apply.
Contents insurance extras and add-ons for renters
If you’re after additional cover, you can also get renters insurance extras to cover the loss, theft or damage on:
- Accidental damage. Renters insurance can include cover for accidental damage to glass and ceramic fixtures, like basins and glass cooktops.
- Jewellery. Family heirlooms are often our most treasured possessions. If you own anything valuable that would be difficult to replace, it’s worth getting them covered.
- Clothing and accessories. Consider the cost of replacing your entire wardrobe if the house was lost in a fire. Even if you don’t ‘dress to the nines’ every day, it could be an expensive proposition.
- Furniture. As a renter, you may not have much in the way of furniture – but your bed, wardrobe and any big-ticket items may still be worth insuring.
- Electronics (e.g. laptops, televisions). Electronics can be easily broken in a disaster, are a desirable target for thieves, and will be sorely missed when you lose them. While you can watch Netflix on your phone, chances are you’ll miss your TV if it’s stolen or destroyed – so it’s best to insure those kinds of items if you can!
- Appliances (i.e. white goods). If you rely on your washing and drying machine, fridge and dishwasher, you might want to check to see if white goods and motor burnout is available on your policy or as an optional add-on.
- Your music/movie collection. If you have a record or film collection, you’ll probably be aware of rare titles being targeted by profit-savvy thieves. However, even if all you own are ten-year-old Seinfeld DVD’s, it could be worth making sure you can replace them.
- Artworks. From framed photographs to prints and paintings, artworks can hold significant sentimental value, not to mention enormous monetary value. Depending on the value of the item, coverage for artworks may cost extra.
You’ll also need to be mindful that any items taken out of the home need to be insured as personal effects.
Renters insurance also covers you from legal liability, should a visitor accidentally trip over and injure themselves at your place.
Be sure to read the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) of a policy to see exactly what’s listed though, as coverage can differ between insurance providers.
Why compare renters insurance?
If you’re renting and need to get insurance cover for your possessions, comparing policies may help you find a better price – as well as make it much easier to find the coverage you’re looking for.
We make comparing policies quick and simple.
Our free renters insurance comparison tool allows you to compare policies from a number of Australia’s leading insurers, side-by-side. You can compare and select cover in minutes, so why not see what we have to offer?