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The best renters insurance of 2020

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If you’re currently renting your home, renters insurance is coverage you should probably have — especially considering how little it costs. 

Whether you’re renting a studio apartment or an entire single-family home, renters insurance picks up where your landlord’s insurance policy leaves off. If a fire destroys your rented home, your renters insurance could help to replace your belongings. Similarly, if someone hurts themselves in your rented home and sues you, this coverage could help. 

The average renters insurance policy costs between $15 and $20 per month, much cheaper than homeowners insurance. Renters insurance policies is available from a variety of insurers, and it might be smart to bundle it with car insurance or other types of insurance to get the best price on both policies. 

If you’re searching for a new company for your renter’s insurance policy, know that many factors can change the price you’re quoted, including your credit score in some states, characteristics of the home you’re renting, and even whether you have a dog. 

Business Insider obtained sample quotes from some of the top companies offering renters insurance for a rented, two-bedroom, one-bath, single-family home in Philadelphia. Data on customer satisfaction and state availability were also considered.

The below companies are listed from lowest to highest sample quote:

*Customer satisfaction rating out of 1,000

State Farm took the top spot, offering coverage for less than $16 per month. Several other companies also offered coverage for under $20 per month, including Travelers and Lemonade. 

Here’s some more detail on our winners:

1. State Farm Renters Insurance

Pros:

  • The biggest provider of renters insurance in the US
  • Lowest monthly rate 
  • Highly rated for customer service

Cons:

  • Covering computers and jewelry could add to your policy’s cost

State Farm is the biggest provider of private renters insurance in the US, taking the majority of the market in 44 states. This company had some of the lowest renters insurance rates in Business Insider’s sample scenario, with a policy for a typical home in Philadelphia costing less than $16 per month. 

State Farm’s renters insurance is a solid starting plan, covering the basics of the items you own, your expenses if something happens to your rented home, and liability. However, it may cost more to cover some items, like jewelry and computers, under this policy.

2. Travelers renters insurance

Pros:

  • Low prices, even with a $30,000 policy minimum

Cons:

  • Minimum coverage may be more than some renters need

Travelers renters insurance is a good option for anyone who wants more coverage than the standard $10,000 or $20,000 policy has to offer. Travelers’ renters insurance coverage limit is higher than the typical policy, starting at $30,000. While that may be more than you need, Travelers still came in second for price in Business Insider’s quotes.

3. Lemonade renters insurance

Pros: 

  • Easy online quoting and purchasing

Cons:

  • Not available in all states
  • No bundling discounts — Lemonade only offers home and renters insurance

Lemonade offers renters insurance policy purchasing and quotes online with a very smooth and easy online experience. If you want to work with an agent, this probably isn’t the company for you. But, for an easy and affordable renters insurance policy, Lemonade may be a good option. 

This insurer is currently only available in 28 states and the District of Columbia. However, Lemonade only does homeowners, renters, co-op, and condo insurance, so you may be able to get better rates by bundling through other companies. 

4. Nationwide renters insurance

Pros: 

  • Multi-policy discounts available

Cons:

  • Policies start at $20, which is higher than other companies’ starting costs

Nationwide offers renters insurance policies in addition to several other types of polices, making it a great option for anyone who wants to keep their insurance in one place. While its insurance prices aren’t the cheapest on this list, bundling policies could make it much more affordable.

5. Farmers renters insurance

Pros:

  • Good marks for customer satisfaction
  • Bundling discounts available

Cons:

  • Not the cheapest renters insurance

Farmers offers relatively affordable renters insurance policies. Though it took the fifth spot, a sample quote of $21.83 still means there are companies that charge more. 

With many other types of insurance policies, including car insurance, there are plenty of ways to bundle and get a discount. Policy add-ons like identity theft protection could also be helpful. 

This company has earned a pretty good reputation for customer satisfaction from JD Power’s renters insurance satisfaction survey, too, earning 25 points out of 1,000 in 2019.

Bonus: USAA renters insurance

Pros:

  • High marks for customer satisfaction
  • Rated highly for other types of insurance, like car and homeowners

Cons:

  • Quotes not available online
  • Only available to military members and family

For military families or anyone eligible, USAA could be a good option as well. While quotes aren’t available online, USAA consistently earns top marks for insurance coverage in other categories, including car insurance and homeowners insurance. It also took the top spot for customer satisfaction in JD Power’s customer satisfaction survey. If it’s an option for you, a quote from USAA would be a good place to start your search. 

Like homeowners insurance and car insurance, renters insurance can vary a lot by state. Where you live will play a big role in your quote, and each company will consider that differently. 

That said, there are some pretty stark trends in which insurance companies are the most popular in each state, and it might be worth getting a quote to compare from the company that’s most popular in yours. 

Here’s the most popular insurance company by state in 2019, according to S&P Global data. 

State  Most popular insurance company Market share
Alabama State Farm 27.2%
Alaska State Farm 32.1%
Arizona State Farm 17.4%
Arkansas State Farm 26.3%
California State Farm  17.6%
Colorado State Farm 19.5%
Connecticut Liberty Mutual  10.1%
Delaware State Farm 25%
District of Columbia State Farm 21.4%
Florida UIH Insurance 10.4%
Georgia State Farm 25.8%
Hawaii State Farm 30.6%
Idaho State Farm 14.8%
Illinois State Farm 32.8%
Indiana State Farm 24.2%
Iowa State Farm 25.5%
Kansas State Farm 21%
Kentucky State Farm 23.7%
Louisiana State Farm 25.6%
Maine State Farm 12%
Maryland State Farm 17.6%
Massachusetts Mapfre Insurance 13.1%
Michigan State Farm 15.9%
Minnesota State Farm 25.2%
Mississippi State Farm 26.1%
Missouri State Farm 25%
Montana State Farm 24.1%
Nebraska State Farm 23.4%
Nevada State Farm  19%
New Hampshire Liberty Mutual 13.9%
New Jersey New Jersey Manufacturers Group 10.5%
New Mexico State Farm 19.8%
New York Allstate 13.9%
North Carolina State Farm 16.9%
North Dakota State Farm 15.1%
Ohio State Farm 20.4%
Oklahoma State Farm 28%
Oregon State Farm 21.6%
Pennsylvania State Farm 17.3%
Rhode Island Amica Mutual 16.3%
South Carolina State Farm 20%
South Dakota State Farm 19.4%
Tennessee State Farm 23.5%
Texas State Farm 18.3%
Utah State Farm 16.6%
Vermont Vermont Mutual Group 12.5%
Virginia USAA  19.8%
Washington State Farm 16.8%
West Virginia State Farm 25.4%
Wisconsin American Family Insurance 21.7%
Wyoming State Farm 21.4%

Even though one company may be the overwhelmingly most popular in your state, it’s still worth shopping around and comparing quotes before buying a policy.

How were the winners determined?

The best renters insurance company is one that offers the most coverage for the least amount of money, and also has a good reputation for customer service. 

For this ranking, Business Insider only included companies that allowed customers to get quotes and purchase policies online (with the exception of USAA, because of its exemplary customer-satisfaction ratings). To find out how much policies typically cost, Business Insider obtained sample quotes for renters insurance for a single-family, townhouse-style home in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with two occupants. This sample property did not have pets, and had only a local smoke detector system. The companies were then ranked based on the sample premium. 

Customer satisfaction was also considered as a factor, with almost all of the companies taking top spots for customer satisfaction in JD Power’s renters insurance satisfaction survey. Additionally, only companies with insurance available in more than half of US states were considered. 

How much is renters insurance?

According to data from the Insurance Information Institute, the average renters insurance policy cost $180 per year in 2017, or about $15 per month. 

The amount you’ll pay for renters insurance can vary based on several factors, including the location, type, and size of home you’re renting, your credit score, and the amount of coverage you’re looking for. Other things may also play a role in the price of your renters insurance, including whether you have a dog, and how many people live with you. 

Renters insurance is generally pretty affordable, and can sometimes be bundled with other policies for better rates. If you already have car insurance, it might pay to get a quote from your current insurer including renters insurance to see if it offers a discount. 

What does renters insurance cover?

Sure, your landlord has an insurance policy on your rented home. But, it probably won’t cover you or your things if anything happens to your building, or if you’re facing a lawsuit from someone hurt on your property. Renters insurance doesn’t cover any structural damage that happens to your home, however. 

There are two main parts of coverage to a renters insurance policy: property coverage, and liability coverage. 

Property coverage

If a fire burns down your rented home, for example, your landlord’s insurance policy will help to rebuild it. But, it won’t help you, the tenant, replace or repair your items. That’s what renters insurance is for. 

Renters insurance can help to replace or pay for property that you bring into the home if something unexpected happens to it, from fires to theft. If your items are stolen or damaged, you could get help with the cost of replacing those items from your renters insurance policy. 

Sometimes, renters insurance will also cover property left in vehicles, or other items that could be stolen. Some renters insurance policies also include identity theft protection. 

Liability protection

Liability protection from your renters insurance policy could help protect you if someone sues you over damage or an accident that happens on your property. Depending on your coverage, it could help cover you up to a certain dollar amount. 

How to find the best cheap renters insurance

To be sure that you’re getting the best price for your renters insurance coverage, you’ll want to shop around and get quotes from several different insurers. Compare the quotes, and look for the most coverage types and limits. Then, look for the lowest premiums that fit your budget. 

Source: on 2020-06-26 09:52:30

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