Best Renters Insurance Companies (2024)

Renters insurance covers personal items, liability, medical payments, and loss of use for less than $30 per month, on average.

Elizabeth Rivelli
Elizabeth Rivelli
  • 5+ years writing insurance and personal finance topics

  • Auto, home, health, and life insurance expertise

Elizabeth has extensive insurance industry experience, having written for Insureon, Rate Retriever, and Insurify. She’s also finance and insurance editor for Car and Driver.

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Ashley Cox
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Ashley CoxSenior Managing Editor
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Ashley is a seasoned personal finance editor who’s produced a variety of digital content, including insurance, credit cards, mortgages, and consumer lending products.

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Mark Friedlander
Reviewed byMark Friedlander
Mark Friedlander
Mark FriedlanderDirector, Corporate Communications
  • Corporate communications director for Insurance Information Institute

  • 20+ years in insurance and communications

As Director, Corporate Communications for Triple-I, Mark serves as the non-profit’s national spokesperson, sharing information and education on a wide array of insurance issues.

Updated June 14, 2024

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Renters insurance, also known as HO-4 insurance, specifically protects tenants. Standard renters insurance policies include four components: personal property coverage, personal liability coverage, medical payments coverage, and loss of use coverage (commonly known as additional living expenses). Some insurance companies also sell endorsements for additional protection.

The average cost of renters insurance is $15 to $30 per month, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), which is much cheaper than the cost of homeowners insurance.[1] But renters insurance premiums depend on multiple factors, including your location, policy limits, claims history, and credit score.

Quick Facts
  • Renters insurance only covers your belongings and personal liability, not the structure of your unit.

  • Many property managers and landlords require tenants to buy renters insurance.

  • Renters insurance doesn’t cover damages and losses from floods or earthquakes — you’ll need a separate flood insurance policy and an earthquake endorsement for protection from these perils.

Do you need renters insurance?

Everyone who rents their home should have renters insurance, and many rental agreements require tenants to buy their own insurance coverage. Your landlord’s insurance policy doesn’t provide any protection for your personal items, so you’re responsible for paying the out-of-pocket costs to replace your belongings if you don’t have renters insurance.

For example, imagine a fire in your building destroys most of your personal items. Your landlord’s policy will cover the structural damage, but not the items in your unit. Without renters insurance, you’d have to replace all your belongings using your own money.

If you had renters insurance, you could file a claim with your insurance company to get reimbursement or replacement for your damaged items. After investigating the incident, your insurer would provide a settlement that you could use to replace the damaged items with new ones. The loss of use coverage in your renters policy could also pay for temporary housing if the fire leaves your home uninhabitable.

5 best renters insurance companies

Many insurance companies offer renters insurance, but they have differences you should account for when comparing renters insurance quotes. Before you choose an insurer, it’s important to compare companies based on key features, like customer service, financial strength, and discounts.

Here are the top five best renters insurance companies, based on Insurify’s analysis.

Insurance CompanyJ.D. Power Customer Satisfaction Score (out of 1,000)AM Best RatingBest Discounts
Allstate809A+Retiree discount
GEICONot ratedA++Home security system discount
Liberty Mutual789AOnline purchase discount
Progressive791A+Gated community discount
AssurantNot ratedA+Pay-in-full discount
  • To choose the best renters insurance companies, Insurify considered each company’s market share rank from the NAIC, their financial strength rating from AM Best, and the renters insurance discounts they offer.

What renters insurance covers

Renters insurance provides coverage for many different losses you might face as a tenant. It covers damage from incidents like fires, windstorms, falling objects, hail, theft, vandalism, power surges, and sudden and accidental water discharge from something like a burst pipe or overflowing bathtub in the apartment unit above yours.

Most renters insurance policies cover personal property, liability, medical expenses, and loss of use. Here’s what each coverage applies to:[2]

  • illustration card https://a.storyblok.com/f/162273/100x100/32ed42213e/personal-property.svg

    Personal items

    Personal property insurance covers the belongings in your home or apartment, including furniture, clothing, decor, electronics, and small appliances. 

  • illustration card https://a.storyblok.com/f/162273/x/abffe6238f/financial-protection.svg

    Liability

    Liability insurance covers your legal and financial responsibility in third-party claims of bodily injury or property damage. The liability portion of your policy also covers claims related to accidental damage that you cause to someone else’s belongings.[3]

  • illustration card https://a.storyblok.com/f/162273/x/4c9753bdbe/medical-payments.svg

    Medical expenses

    If someone gets injured in your home, medical expenses coverage will pay for some of their medical bills, whether or not you were responsible for the incident.

  • illustration card https://a.storyblok.com/f/162273/100x100/c61ab9bfc2/loss-of-use-2.svg

    Loss of use

    Loss of use insurance pays for temporary living expenses (like a hotel and restaurant meals) if your home or apartment becomes uninhabitable after a covered loss.

 What Is Renters Insurance and How Does It Work?

What Is Renters Insurance and How Does It Work?

Optional rental insurance coverages to add

While standard renters insurance policies provide robust coverage, they don’t cover everything. To fill gaps in your policy, many renters insurance companies sell optional coverages. Here are some of the coverages that you can add to your renters policy:

  • Contents replacement cost coverage: Basic renters policies cover your personal items up to their actual cash value (ACV), which calculates the item’s value after depreciation. You can upgrade to a replacement cost coverage policy, which provides a higher payout to replace your damaged items with new ones of similar make and quality to the old ones, at current market cost.

  • Flood insurance: Most renters insurance policies exclude coverage for floods. You can purchase a separate flood insurance policy or endorsement that covers your personal belongings against flood damage. 

  • Earthquake insurance: Standard renters policies usually don’t cover earth movement or earthquakes. If you live in an area that experiences earthquakes, you can add an earthquake endorsement to your renters insurance policy.

  • Identity theft insurance: Identity theft insurance is an add-on that covers expenses associated with identity theft, such as lawyer fees, credit-repair costs, and more.

Does renters insurance cover theft?

Most renters insurance policies cover theft of personal property, up to the policy’s coverage limit. But this coverage doesn’t just apply to items in your home. Renters insurance can also cover theft if someone steals an item from your car or storage unit.

Make sure to read the details of your policy so you know what is and isn’t covered.

How much does renters insurance cost?

The average cost of renters insurance is between $15 and $30 per month, or $180 to $360 per year, according to the NAIC.[1]

But the actual cost of renters insurance is different for everyone. Some factors that can affect renters insurance prices are your location, coverage limits, optional coverages, claim history, deductible, credit history, and insurance company.

Renters insurance discounts

To find the lowest renters insurance premium for your situation, it’s a good idea to shop around and compare rates from several insurers. You can also look for insurance companies that offer renters insurance discounts. Some of the most common include:

  • illustration card https://a.storyblok.com/f/162273/x/f9e1d7766e/saving-bundle.svg

    Policy bundling

    If you purchase renters insurance and another policy from the same insurer, like car insurance, you can often get a significant discount.

  • illustration card https://a.storyblok.com/f/162273/x/c822f20cb3/billing-related.svg

    Pay in full

    Most insurers provide a small discount if you pay your annual renters insurance premium up front and in full.

  • illustration card https://a.storyblok.com/f/162273/x/743065ad20/theft.svg

    Safety alarm

    If your house or apartment is equipped with safety devices like burglar alarms and smoke detectors, you could earn a discount on your premium.

  • illustration card https://a.storyblok.com/f/162273/x/d980bd9cc4/membership.svg

    Advanced quote

    Some companies offer a discount for getting a renters insurance quote at least a week before your current renters insurance policy expires.

How to file a renters insurance claim

If you experience a covered loss, it’s important to file a renters insurance claim as soon as possible. Here are the steps you should follow to file a renters claim:

  1. Document the damage. Take photos and videos of the damage. Visual evidence of the loss will help your assigned insurance adjuster evaluate and process your claim. 

  2. File a police report. If you’re filing a claim for theft or vandalism, you should also file a report with your local police. Your insurance company may request the police report when it investigates the claim.

  3. Notify your insurance company. Once you have the photos, videos, and police report, contact your insurance company to report the claim. You’ll fill out claim paperwork and submit the documentation you’ve collected. Typically, you can file a claim through your insurer’s mobile app, online, or over the phone.

  4. Talk to your landlord. It’s a good idea to contact your landlord about the incident, even if they’re not involved. If you’re filing a claim for damage from a natural disaster or a crime, your landlord or property manager may want to know what happened.

  5. Wait for your settlement. Once you’ve submitted the claim, the adjuster will determine how much money the insurance company pays out. Most insurers will issue the settlement in the form of a check or direct deposit.

Can you get renters insurance if you live with roommates?

You can get renters insurance if you live with roommates. But it’s important to know that your renters insurance policy won’t automatically cover the other people you live with (and vice versa). Depending on your state and insurance company, you might be able to add a roommate to your renters insurance policy so you both have coverage.

Renters insurance FAQs

If you still have questions about renters insurance, this additional information can be helpful for tenants.

  • Does renters insurance cover flooding?

    Probably not. Most renters insurance policies exclude coverage for flooding, even if a hurricane or other natural disaster causes it.[4] If you want coverage for flooding, you should purchase a separate flood insurance policy or add a flood insurance endorsement to your renters policy.

  • Does renters insurance cover dog bites?

    Yes, renters insurance usually covers dog bites. If your dog bites someone else and they sue you, your renters insurance policy should cover your legal costs and the person’s medical bills, up to your policy’s limit.[5]

  • How do you create an inventory for renters insurance?

    Having a home inventory is very beneficial. An inventory should include all the personal items you own (or groups of items, like clothing) and their estimated prices. If you have receipts or detailed information, like serial numbers for appliances, you should also include those. An inventory comes in handy when you need to file a personal property claim.

  • Do college students need rental insurance?

    Some college students need rental insurance, but it depends on the situation. If you’re a dependent and your parents have home insurance, you may have coverage under their policy, even if you’re living somewhere else.[3] But you should verify with their home insurance agent whether or not their coverage extends to your off-campus rental.

  • Is landlord insurance different from renters insurance?

    Landlord insurance and renters insurance are different. Your landlord or property manager pays for landlord insurance, which covers damage to the physical structure of the building and common areas, as well as personal property left on-site for tenant use, like a lawn mower. It also includes liability insurance and loss of rental income.[4] Renters insurance, which you’ll pay for as a tenant, covers tenants’ belongings, liability, and loss of use. 

  • Do landlords require renters insurance?

    Many landlords and property managers require renters insurance as part of a lease agreement. Even if your landlord doesn’t, renters insurance is still worth it. Remember that your landlord’s insurance doesn’t provide any coverage for your belongings, so you’d have to pay out of pocket to replace any damaged items after a covered loss, regardless of the cause.

Sources

  1. NAIC. "Renting Your Home? Protect Your Belongings with Renters Insurance."
  2. III. "Renters Insurance."
  3. Texas Department of Insurance. "Renters insurance: What does it cover and how much does it cost?."
  4. III. "Coverage for renting out your home."
Elizabeth Rivelli
Elizabeth Rivelli

Elizabeth Rivelli is a freelance writer covering insurance and personal finance. She has extensive knowledge of various insurance lines, including property and casualty, health, and life insurance. Her byline has been featured in dozens of publications, including Investopedia, Forbes, Bankrate, NextAdvisor, and Insurance.com

Ashley Cox
Edited byAshley CoxSenior Managing Editor
Headshot of Managing Editor Ashley Cox
Ashley CoxSenior Managing Editor
  • 7+ years in content creation and management

  • 5+ years in insurance and personal finance content

Ashley is a seasoned personal finance editor who’s produced a variety of digital content, including insurance, credit cards, mortgages, and consumer lending products.

Featured in

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Mark Friedlander
Reviewed byMark FriedlanderDirector, Corporate Communications
Mark Friedlander
Mark FriedlanderDirector, Corporate Communications
  • Corporate communications director for Insurance Information Institute

  • 20+ years in insurance and communications

As Director, Corporate Communications for Triple-I, Mark serves as the non-profit’s national spokesperson, sharing information and education on a wide array of insurance issues.

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