Frees Advice: Renters Insurance

Children Moving Out of the House

Details. Details. Details…

They can be annoying in life, but they are VERY important in insurance. Who is an insured is defined within all policies. Most policies define an insured to include the named insured and “resident relatives.” This eliminates the need to add all of your children, aunts, parents, etc. But it also excludes coverage for children when they move out and establish another residence (typically, this is not while they are simply students away at school).

If your son or daughter moves out and takes one of your cars with them, you are still covered, but they have NO protection. There is no coverage for their medical bills and no coverage for their uninsured or underinsured motorist protection. What should you do? Put the car and the insurance in their name. What if they move out and don’t take a car? They should buy coverage called “Non-owned” coverage to protect them while riding in taxis, Ubers, etc.

What if they move out? Renters insurance provides them coverage for their personal liability exposure, protection for their personal belongings, and coverage for them to live someplace else if their apartment is damaged by a covered loss.

Questions about this? Call your insurance professional. Don’t have an insurance professional? Please contact us or call us at 610-933-4950.

Never Assume

As 2019 quickly comes to a close, we thought it would be good to revisit this year’s annual insurance review letter. The points addressed in the letter remain just as important as they were when we wrote this. Please come to us with any questions as we are happy to answer them before any issues arise.

Never Assume. (We all know what happens when we do…)

The insurance world is dynamic. Your life is dynamic. It is vital that you understand what coverage is available and how your coverage works. The purpose of this review is to let you know what you have and what is available. We ask that you review this and let us know what is changing in your life.

  • Never assume that there is coverage for renting a car while on vacation. Going on vacation and renting a car? Contact us to discuss the potentially uninsured exposures.
  • Never assume that the car dealer called to tell us you got a new car. Getting a new car? There are many new coverages that are available including Loan Gap and Replacement coverage we need to review.
  • Never assume your home or auto policy covers everything. For example, there are significant coverage exclusions for flood and surface water. You cannot even buy coverage for some exposures.
  • Never assume that your Uber, Lyft, VRBO, or Airbnb is covered. Do you earn money in the “sharing” economy? Call us to discuss the huge gaps in your protection.
  • Never assume your newly finished basement is protected if the sump pump fails. Renovating any aspect of your home should prompt a call to us to review the possible coverage change.
  • Never assume the level of liability protection on your home or car policy will give you enough protection in a serious loss. Have you spoken with us about an umbrella?
  • Never assume that your hair stylist, neighbor, plumber, butcher, or dentist know more about your insurance than we do. Call us if you have questions about what protection you have or what you need.
  • Never assume that your engagement ring and jewelry are properly insured. Homeowners insurance affords VERY little coverage for stolen jewelry and NONE for broken jewelry.

Thanks for taking the time to review all of this. Hopefully, it provides you with a better understanding of your
protection. We appreciate your business.

Renters Insurance at School

So… it’s that time of the year. Back to school. I know I know. Summer 2k16 is quickly coming to an end. It’s time to pack your things up and head back to school. This year will be different though. You are spreading your wings and escaping the “dorm life.” You and your best friends have rented a “nice” house (or apartment) for the year. It’s going to be incredible. No RAs to tell you to turn down the music. No more mac and cheese from your dorm room microwave. The best part? You can throw parties whenever you want.
Flash forward three weeks. It’s the Sunday morning after the first weekend back at school. You wake up after throwing an “awesome” party and decide to check out your schedule for the week. For some reason, you can’t find your new Macbook. You go downstairs to look for it and you notice that brand new TV is gone too… What happened? I thought we just invited “friends” over. It turns out that your friend invited some “randos” on their walk over and now all of your stuff is gone. Luckily, you and your roommates were smart and all purchased your own renters’ insurance policies and were able to get all of your stolen belongings back. Phew. This is just one benefit of renter’s insurance.
A few months down the road and it’s your 21st birthday. Wahoo! You never tried this “alcohol” and are very excited to celebrate the big day. You start the celebration a little early so you are ready for the bars at midnight. All of your best friends come over to help celebrate. The house gets a little crowded and someone accidentally falls down the stairs. The party continues on and you have a great rest of the night. Unfortunately for the girl who fell down the stairs ends up with a broken leg. Her parents are not happy and end up suing you for the damages. I know this sounds far-fetched but unfortunately it has happened. Once again, your trusty renter’s insurance policy steps in and defends you against the suing parents and pays the settlement and defense costs.
One last thing about renter’s insurance. The included coverage called “loss of use” is incredibly important. You know how you always thought your landlord was a little sketchy? Well, unfortunately after a neighbor accidentally burns down the building from a kitchen fire, your landlord informs you that he does not have the appropriate coverage to pay for new housing for you. Also, that “confusing line” in the lease actually releases him from responsibility of providing somewhere else for you to stay. Once again, the trusty insurance company steps in and will pay to put you in a hotel or new apartment. Just another benefit of this affordable policy.

This fall, make sure you reach out to your insurance agent to discuss whether you need renter’s insurance. Most likely you need it. For about $125 a year (that’s $11 a month) you can purchase personal property coverage of $20,000 and up to $500,000 in liability coverage. Your landlord’s insurance will not protect you or your belongings. I promise you that your belongings are worth more than you think. I promise you that if people can sue, they will sue. Talk to your insurance agent today or give us a call to discuss this imperative coverage.