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Should Tenants have to purchase extra property insurance?

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Is it legal for a rental property owner make a renter purchase property insurance other than the person to purchase renters insurance? I would assume that should say some type of damage to the outside of the property or the building it self would come under the properties owners insurance. Additionally, is it legal for a tenant should they opt out of purchasing extra property insurance for the apt. that they are renting be charged an extra ten dollars a month for this purpose? The company suggest that the amount of coverage be at least fifty thousand dollars.

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Is it legal for a rental property owner to make a renter purchase property insurance other than the person to purchase renters insurance?

-- This question isn't worded correctly, or the rental property owner isn't clear on the laws. To insure property, you must own the property. As a tenant, you may be required by the rental property owner to purchase renter's insurance. This protects the landlord (rental property owner) from any damages inside or outside of the location you're renting. In order to purchase additional property insurance, you would have to own the property, and you don't. You can't insure someone else's property in your name, and then collect off of it, should disaster strike. I couldn't insure my neighbor's house, for instance. The additional property insurance wouldn't be necessary because the renter's insurance covers the renter's belongings and any damages to the rental property, which are caused by the tenant. You wouldn't purchase renter's insurance and separate property insurance. For a renter, they're one in the same.

I would assume that should say some type of damage to the outside of the property or the building itself would come under the properties owners insurance.

-- This is ...

Solution Summary

This solution addresses a tenant insurance question. The answer addresses the legal requirements of tenants being required to carry additional property insurance when renting a business or a dwelling. A thorough discussion is provided, and all pertinent legal issues are included.

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See Also This Related BrainMass Solution

Renter's Insurance

We Rent, So Why Do We Need Insurance?
"Have you been down in the basement?" Nathan asked his wife, Erin, as he entered their apartment. "No, what's up?" responded Erin. "It's flooded because of all that rain we got last weekend!" he exclaimed. "Oh no! We have the extra furniture my mom gave us stored down there. Is everything ruined?" Erin asked. "The couch and coffee table are in a foot of water; the loveseat was the only thing that looked OK. Boy, I didn't realize the basement of this building wasn't waterproof. I'm going to call our landlady to complain."
As Erin thought about the situation, she remembered that when they moved in last fall, Kathy, their landlady, had informed them that her insurance policy covered the building but not the property belonging to each tenant. Because of this, they had purchased renter's insurance. "Nathan, I think our renter's insurance will cover the damage. Let me give our agent a call."
When Erin and Nathan purchased their insurance, they had to decide whether they wanted to be insured for cash value or for replacement costs. Replacement was more expensive, but it meant they would collect enough to go out and buy new household items at today's process. If they had opted for cash value, the couch Erin's mother had paid $1000 for five years ago would be worth less than $500 today.
Erin made the call and found out their insurance did cover the furniture in the basement, and at replacement value after they paid the deductible. The $300 they had invested in renter's insurance last year was well worth it!
Not every renter has as much foresight as Erin and Nathan. Fewer than 4 in 10 renters have renter's insurance. Some aren't even aware the need it. They may assume they are covered by the landlord's insurance, but they aren't. This mistake can be costly.
Think about how much you have invested in your possessions and how much it would cost to replace them. Start with your stereo equipment or the television and DVD player that you bought last year. Experts suggest that people who rent start thinking about these things as soon as they move into their first apartment. Your policy should cover your personal belongings and provide funds for living expenses if you are disposed by a fire or other disaster.

Questions:
1. Why is it important for people who rent to have insurance?
2. Does the building owner's property insurance ever cover the tenant's personal property?
3. What is the difference between cash value and replacement value?
4. When shopping for renter's insurance, what coverage features should you look for?

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