recently released survey results about renters insurance.

Survey says:

  • 57.5 percent of renters do not have renters insurance
  • Nearly 40 percent of those without insurance say it’s too expensive
  • Only 6.7 percent of those surveyed have used their renters insurance
  • 8.5 percent of those who responded believe renters insurance is just another way for insurance companies to make money

Almost 18 percent of people without renters insurance say their stuff is not worth it. I used to think this too until I started to add up how much I’d spent on furniture, my computer and television.

I once lived in an apartment surrounded by trees full of squirrels. Somehow the squirrels figured out how to get into the walls of the building. There must have been a gap in the roof. I used to hear scurrying in my ceiling and I thought it was my upstairs neighbor doing something wacky. Then one day I opened my coat closet by my front door and found a big hole in the wall. My coats and shoes had been soiled and the dry wall in the closet was punctured. No squirrel in sight though. I thought, “I have renters insurance, I’ll call them.” Well, animal damage is not one of the covered items. I tossed some of my belongings, took my coats to the cleaners and let the apartment maintenance guy patch the closet wall.

Renters insurance does cover more than just stuff though. It covers theft, vandalism, fire and lightning, weather damage, injury to another person and to another person’s property, according to The company sent the survey to an email database of current renters and received 412 responses.

If you don’t have renters insurance, and want to get it, a good place to start may be your auto insurer. Many of these companies also offer renters insurance and you can probably spread out the cost over several months. And you may be able to add extra coverage for valuables like jewelry and collectibles.

November 9, 2007