Do I need contents insurance if I’m renting?


Do I need contents insurance if I’m renting?

Contents insurance is important if you want to protect your personal belongings in the event that they are damaged or destroyed. While buildings insurance is necessary and protects the structure and fixtures of your home (if you own it), contents insurance covers your belongings like furniture and electricals.

You may not have thought about it before, but it’s really important to consider taking out a contents insurance policy even if you’re renting.

Protecting your treasured belongings

In the unfortunate event that you are the victim of a burglary or a house fire, not having the right insurance can make a bad situation much worse.  

Having contents insurance means your insurer will pay you the money you need to replace or repair the broken or destroyed items. So, even if you’re renting, it’s important to get yourself a good contents insurance policy.

You should be able to choose which type of policy you get, but if you buy through a comparison website, they may not give you the option to choose. A sum insured policy means you work out how much your belongings are worth and this is how much you get back if they are destroyed. With an unlimited sum insured policy, you have an unlimited level of cover for your belongings. Or, your insurer will calculate their own cover for you based on how many bedrooms you have with a bedroom rated policy.

With a basic contents insurance policy, you can expect protection on the things listed below:

- Furniture

- Televisions

- Sound systems and stereos

- Desktop computers

- Rugs

- Free-standing appliances, like fridges, washing machines and tumble dryers

Just because you live in a rented property doesn’t mean your belongings are already covered. Some landlords might include a contents insurance policy when you sign the deal, but it’s not all that common so you should check this if you’re unsure. If you live in a rented flat or a house share, you might find tenants’ insurance cover policies that you should consider.

Even if your landlord does provide you with contents insurance, it may not offer the level of cover you need.

Getting the right cover

Although basic contents insurance can be a lifeline in the event of a burglary or house fire, you may want to think about extending your insurance to cover your portable belongings.

You normally only get protection on things like laptops, cameras, tablets and jewellery with something called personal possessions cover. So, if you want your insurance to extend to these items, make sure your policy covers this. Nowadays, these items are often some of the most expensive things we own, so it’s wise to get them covered.

You’ll likely have to pay more to protect your belongings from accidental damage, too. Standard contents cover usually only protects from events out of your control, like theft and weather damage. Accidental damage cover means you can get a pay-out when you accidentally damage or destroy something you own – like ruining an electrical appliance with water. 

It’s never something we want to think about, but it’s impossible to predict when something might happen that puts your home and belongings at risk. That’s why getting the right level of cover can protect you and your family should you find yourself in a tough situation.