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You probably have car insurance. Maybe you have life insurance and phone insurance, too. But do you really need to add one more insurance policy to your list of monthly bills? Learn more about renters insurance and why it’s probably worth getting.

What is renters insurance?

If you rent an apartment, home, or condo — renters insurance covers your belongings in case of an event that’s mentioned in your policy, like a fire, tornado, or theft. However, most policies won’t cover your belongings in disasters like floods and earthquakes, notes the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).

Renters insurance also protects you from liability. For example, if one of your guests slips and falls in your kitchen, and then sues you to recover the money spent on treating their injuries — renters insurance could help you cover the damages. Depending on your coverage, a renters policy might even reimburse that guest for the property that was damaged when they fell, rather than you having to shell out that cash. This is known as personal liability coverage.

According to the Texas Department of Insurers (TDI), renters insurance can also help cover additional living expenses (ALE), such as rent and food, if you have to move while your place is being repaired after a covered disaster.

You might think, “oh my guests would NEVER sue me” or, “there hasn’t been a natural disaster in my area for a while,” but is the financial risk worth it to you? Probably not. Here are five reasons why you’re probably better off getting renters insurance.

1. Renters insurance can be cheaper than buying new stuff.

You might think renters insurance is expensive. It’s not. The average cost of renters insurance ranges from $15 to $30 a month, according to the NAIC.

Even if your renters insurance was more expensive than the average, you probably wouldn’t be paying much more than $360 a year. That’s a lot less than what it would cost to replace all your belongings if they were stolen or damaged! Just think — the average couch is about $1,000, and a mattress alone can be $800. Throw in a flat screen TV at $1,200 and you’re up to $3,000!

2. Renters insurance is a smart purchase.

OK, so you don’t own a bunch of fancy jewelry or a collection of valuable artwork. However, you own clothing, electronic devices, and other stuff, right? If something happens to your possessions, it could cost thousands of dollars to replace them without renters insurance!

3. Renters insurance goes beyond your landlord’s insurance.

Some renters mistakenly think their landlord’s insurance covers their belongings. Wrong.

According to the NAIC, your landlord’s insurance covers structural damage to a rental building, but that doesn’t include your possessions. It also doesn’t cover damage that you might cause accidentally, such as starting a fire in the kitchen. Plus, your landlord’s insurance doesn’t protect you if someone sues you after getting injured at your place.

4. Some landlords require renters insurance.

As part of your lease, some landlords require that you have a renters insurance policy. Without that insurance, those landlords won’t accept your rental application.

“This could be the landlord’s idea, or it could be an ‘order’ from the landlord’s insurance company — the idea being that if the tenants are covered themselves, some responsibility can be shifted away from the landlord,” reports Investopedia.

5. Renters insurance covers your stuff when you’re away from home.

Let’s say you have a shiny new laptop. You decide to take it with you on a trip to a friend’s house. If you have renters insurance and the computer is stolen while you’re driving to your friend’s place, there’s a chance your policy will cover this loss.

Investopedia reports that, in some instances, your renters insurance travels with you and your belongings, and can protect those belongings in case of damage or theft. However, before banking on your renters insurance to protect your belongings from theft anywhere, anytime — you should contact your insurance provider and double-check what’s covered.

Get affordable renters insurance.

Are you ready to get your renters insurance policy or update your existing one? Get a free quote for affordable renters insurance from Direct Auto, and you’ll see how painless protecting your stuff can be! Plus, in certain states, including Mississippi and Georgia, you could qualify for a discount of 3% if you include renters insurance with your Direct auto insurance policy.