Don’t Skip Out on Rental Insurance


By: 4Rent.ca

About 50 per cent of renters in Canada don’t have insurance, according to the Insurance Bureau of Canada.

It’s a staggering number, but not that surprising when you consider the misconceptions around insurance when renting. Many think their landlord’s insurance covers them, but that is not true. A landlord’s insurance only covers the structure of the building, not the contents or your belongings. 

People tend to think they don’t have anything worth insuring, but once again, that’s not true either. Even if you don’t have significantly expensive items, the accumulation of all your items still has value. Consider the cost of replacing a damaged wardrobe, kitchenware, or furniture – we see how quickly the costs add up. 

And lastly, people choose to pass on tenant insurance because they believe it’s too expensive. The great thing about tenant insurance is that there will be a rate that fits your lifestyle, running from just a couple hundred dollars a year to a few thousand for higher end coverage. 

On average, Canadians pay just $23 per month in tenant insurance. Insurance quotes in British Columbia come in on the higher end of the spectrum at $26 per month, while Ontario is on the lower end at $21 per month.

Let’s talk about what a typical tenant insurance may cover. 

Contents

This includes items that are damaged from a disaster or stolen. Examples would be replacing your stolen TV or replacing furniture damaged by fire.

Third-party Liability

This covers you in case you’re sued for damage to other units. Examples would be a flood that dripped into the unit below you, or a fire you started that spread across the hall to your neighbour. It could also include if someone injures themselves at your unit. 

Additional Living Expenses

If you must be removed from your rental space due to extensive damage, you’ll need to find alternative living arrangements. Insurance will help cover your costs up to a certain capped off dollar value. 

Each insurance policy will be different from the next, so it’s important to do your research on which will fit for you. In general, all insurance companies will consider two main criteria when covering your damaged belongings:

  1. Replacement costs. They will pay you enough to substitute your item based on today’s costs of a similar item.
  2. Actual cost value. They will take into consideration what you originally paid for that item and subtract any depreciation

While no one ever hopes for an accident to happen at their rental property, it’s important to be prepared. Canadian tenant insurance can be affordable and save you additional stress, so don’t hold out on protecting yourself.

Christine Ahrens is a content writer for 4Rent.ca. 4Rent has been successfully connecting apartment hunters and property managers since 2009. Prospective tenants can explore a variety of rental listings across Canada, including condo-like apartments, single home-dwellings, student housing and more.