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Average renters insurance rates for top 60 college cities and towns

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College students party in apartmentLife as a college student can seem pretty simple: Get to class, study in the evenings, party on the weekends.

But students who move out of their parents’ home also take their first few steps into adult life. And that means thinking about insurance.

If you live in an apartment, you need to consider this coverage. Not only does renters insurance protect your possessions in case they are damaged or stolen, but it also protects you from a liability claims should someone suffer an injury while on your property.

Fortunately, renters insurance is not expensive. In fact, the average cost for renters insurance is just $17 a month, or nearly $197 a year, according to Insurance.com rental insurance rate data.

Average renters insurance rates for top college cities and towns

Insurance.com comprised a roster of 60 towns and cities either known for having large student populations or for being home to many of the country’s most well-known colleges and universities, or both.

In the table below you can see how much renters insurance costs, on average, in your college town or city, for a renters policy with coverage levels of $40,000 for personal property, a $1,000 deductible and $100,000 of liability protection. New Orleans, Gainesville, Tallahassee, Boston and Houston are the priciest, while Provo, Burlington, Vermont, Madison, Wisconsin, Iowa City, and Fargo are the most affordable. Can't find your city or town on the list? If you want to know rates for anywhere in the country for 75 different coverage levels, use our average renters insurance rates tool to find out.

City or townStateAverage renter insurance rate
New OrleansLouisiana$1,074
GainesvilleFlorida$697
TallahasseeFlorida$650
BostonMassachusetts$619
HoustonTexas$599
Los AngelesCalifornia$591
PhiladelphiaPennsylvania$472
BerkeleyCalifornia$465
NashvilleTennessee$445
FayettevilleArkansas$441
PasadenaCalifornia$437
ChicagoIllinois$425
CambridgeMassachusetts$424
AmherstMassachusetts$401
ProvidenceRhode Island$399
St. LouisMissouri$396
DavisCalifornia$393
New YorkNew York$391
KalamazooMichigan$386
AustinTexas$383
JacksonvilleNorth Carolina$379
DentonTexas$378
College StationTexas$376
New HavenConnecticut$364
DurhamNorth Carolina$349
GreenvilleNorth Carolina$347
BaltimoreMaryland$334
Ann ArborMichigan$333
StanfordCalifornia$329
PrincetonNew Jersey$326
PittsburghPennsylvania$325
FlagstaffArizona$308
TempeArizona$308
AtlantaGeorgia$304
EvanstonIllinois$301
Winston-SalemNorth Carolina$281
BloomingtonIllinois$280
AthensGeorgia$279
IthacaNew York$279
ColumbiaMissouri$278
Champaign-UrbanaIllinois$277
Chapel HillNorth Carolina$269
LawrenceKansas$268
LynchburgVirginia$264
CharlottesvilleVirginia$263
ManhattanKansas$262
BlacksburgVirginia$260
Notre DameIndiana$256
State CollegePennsylvania$249
MuncieIndiana$244
LafayetteIndiana$243
HanoverNew Hampshire$238
BoulderColorado$235
BellinghamWashington$198
RochesterMinnesota$196
FargoNorth Dakota$181
Iowa CityIowa$169
MadisonWisconsin$168
BurlingtonVermont$155
ProvoUtah$155

Why college students need renters insurance

A lot of young people skip renters insurance, believing they do not need it. But that can be a mistake, says Justin Herndon, spokesperson for Allstate.

Contrary to popular belief, a landlord’s insurance policy will not reimburse renters if their stuff is damaged or stolen. Renters need their own policy to get such protection.

Some students think the items they have are not valuable enough to insure. But Herndon says even little things -- clothes kitchenware, linens -- add up. 

He adds that the average renter owns $30,000 worth of stuff. Although college students likely own less than that, they might own more than they think.

“Don’t underestimate how much stuff you actually own,” he says. “If you’ve got a laptop, you’ve probably got a smartphone. If you’ve got a guitar, you’ve probably got an amp.”

Typically, a policy will reimburse you if your goods are damaged due to:

  • Fire
  • Water damages
  • Theft
  • Vandalism

At least a portion of your renters insurance also covers you away from home. So, if you travel to Canada or study in Europe, your renters insurance will cover you if someone steals that laptop.

“Wherever you go, your insurance coverage travels with you,” Herndon says.

In addition, renters insurance can protect you from a costly lawsuit or other costs if someone hurts themselves in your apartment.

“If someone’s injured at your place, it could cover their medical expenses,” Herndon says.

Renters insurance also can reimburse temporary living expenses – such as paying for a hotel room – if your apartment becomes uninhabitable due to fire, flood or another situation.

Renters insurance for college students: Answers to common questions

Of course, a college student has some insurance concerns that older renters do not.

How does renters insurance work if my parents co-signed my lease?

For example, many students have to turn to their parents to co-sign the apartment lease. In such a situation, the student can be the named insured on the policy, with the parents endorsed as an additional nonoccupant insured, Herndon says.

Can I get a renter insurance discount by bundling with my parents’ home insurance?

It is also possible for a student to get a discount on renters insurance by bundling the coverage with his or her parents’ homeowners policy. That can be true even if the student is going to school in a separate state. But you will need to check with your agent first before assuming you can do this, as Herndon says it is decided on a “case-by-case basis.”

Should I share a renters insurance policy with my roommates?

Also, if you have a roommate, you should not share the policy with your friend. Instead, you each should have your own separate policies. Here’s why: it’s true that you are allowed to share a policy, and this saves money if you split the cost. But the savings is minimal, considering the total cost for coverage is typically under $200 a year. And, if a claim is filed on the policy it will be on your claim history for three to five years, regardless of who filed the claim. That means if your roommate ends up making numerous claims on the policy you could end up paying higher premiums for renters (and other types of insurance) long after you have moved out.

How much renters insurance do you need?

If you are unsure how much coverage you need, here are some tips:

Personal possessions

The personal property section of your policy pays to replace lost, stolen or damaged items you own. Typically you can choose pay out amounts of $20,000 to $100,000. Because renters insurance is affordable, it’s recommended you get at least $40,000 but if you have a lot of valuable possessions $100,000 is best.

Be sure to document your personal belongings by taking photos, saving receipts for new purchases and including serial numbers when appropriate.

Another important factor to look for when shopping for renters insurance is “actual cash value” compared to “replacement cost” coverage.

Actual cash-value coverage will reimburse you for the cost of the personal property at the time of the claim, minus the deductible. It’s important to account for depreciation when considering this coverage option. For example, if a bicycle was stolen from an apartment, five years after you bought it, you would be reimbursed for the current value.

Replacement cost coverage, on the other hand, will reimburse the full value of the new bicycle, after you purchase the new replacement, and submit your receipts. While the up-front cost is greater, you are more likely to receive accurate compensation for your possessions.

Liability for injuries

In addition to protecting your possessions, a renters insurance policy also offers liability coverage. Liability covers the cost for injuries if someone trips, falls or is hurt in your apartment. It also pays for lawsuits a guest may file against you after an accident you’re at fault for.

The amount of liability protection that’s right for you depends on the value of your personal assets, but Insurance.com Consumer Analyst Penny Gusner recommends a minimum of $100,000 liability limits for college students. But, she says ideally, you should carry $300,000 in liability, and

if you can afford more, get it. The cost of a lawsuit can quickly spiral out of control, putting all of your assets at risks.

Increasing your liability limits won’t add much more to the cost of your policy, and can be a financial lifesaver if someone is seriously injured in your home. On a policy covering $40,000 in personal property with a $1,000 deductible, you pay just $12 more a year for $300,000 in liability instead of $100,000. Hike liability to $500,000 and it’s just $20 annually, according to Insurance.com’s rate data.

Choosing a deductible amount

Deductibles are what you pay out when you file a claim before your insurance policy kicks in. So, if you file a claim for $5,000 worth of stolen or damaged personal items, and your deductible is $1,000, you pay that amount and receive $5,000 from your insurance company. Typically, you can select a deductible amount from $500 up to several thousand dollars. A higher deductible means lower rates, but it also means you have to have the money on hand to pay it when filing a claim. If a $1,000 deductible seems pricey on a college-student budget, you can opt for $500. For $40,000 in personal property coverage and $100,000 in liability, cutting your deductible in half from $1,000 to $500 only costs $16 more a year.

Comparing renters insurance rates by company

Like other types of insurance, the best way to save on renters coverage is to compare prices among companies. Refer to the table below, which shows rates by company for a policy of $40,000 in personal property coverage with a $1,000 deductible and $100,000 in liability.

Enter your state in the search field to see what you can expect to pay in your location.

StateCompanyAverage annual rate
AlaskaAllstate$108
AlaskaState Farm$115
AlaskaUSAA$126
AlabamaUSAA$193
AlabamaAlfa Mutual$215
AlabamaTravelers$233
AlabamaState Farm$241
AlabamaLiberty Mutual$269
AlabamaAllstate$284
ArkansasTravelers$175
ArkansasState Farm$220
ArkansasFarmers$351
ArkansasFarm Bureau$533
ArizonaUSAA$67
ArizonaTravelers$125
ArizonaState Farm$153
ArizonaAmerican Family$218
CaliforniaMercury$191
CaliforniaAllstate$200
CaliforniaTravelers$221
CaliforniaState Farm$245
CaliforniaFarmers$363
CaliforniaLiberty Mutual$390
ColoradoUSAA$69
ColoradoLiberty Mutual$93
ColoradoAmerican Family$104
ColoradoTravelers$125
ColoradoState Farm$126
ConnecticutTravelers$159
ConnecticutAllstate$159
ConnecticutState Farm$163
ConnecticutAmica$177
DCUSAA$64
DCState Farm$152
DCChubb$202
DCTravelers$202
DCAllstate$212
DelawareUSAA$64
DelawareTravelers$143
DelawareState Farm$146
DelawareLiberty Mutual$162
DelawareAllstate$205
DelawareNationwide$383
FloridaTravelers$239
FloridaState Farm$288
FloridaUSAA$338
FloridaAllstate$375
FloridaFlorida Peninsula$397
FloridaUniversal$482
FloridaUnited$630
GeorgiaUSAA$86
GeorgiaState Farm$115
GeorgiaTravelers$146
GeorgiaCountry Mutual$179
GeorgiaGeorgia Farm Bureau$238
GeorgiaAllstate$339
HawaiiState Farm$115
HawaiiFirst Fire$199
HawaiiAllstate$218
HawaiiUSAA$264
IowaAllied$93
IowaState Farm$117
IowaTravelers$127
IowaFarm Bureau$129
IowaAmerican Family$141
IdahoLiberty Mutual$100
IdahoState Farm$129
IdahoAllstate$141
IdahoFarmers$159
IdahoAmerican Family$169
IdahoFarm Bureau$197
IllinoisState Farm$148
IllinoisAmerican Family$155
IllinoisAllstate$161
IllinoisTravelers$204
IllinoisLiberty Mutual$911
IndianaState Farm$142
IndianaTravelers$142
IndianaLiberty Mutual$150
IndianaErie$179
IndianaAllstate$218
IndianaAmerican Family$233
IndianaUnited Farm Family$246
KansasLiberty Mutual$77
KansasTravelers$125
KansasState Farm$132
KansasFarm Bureau$138
KansasAmerican Family$181
KentuckyCincinnati$113
KentuckyLiberty Mutual$124
KentuckyTravelers$138
KentuckyNationwide$184
KentuckyState Farm$184
KentuckyKentucky Farm$209
LouisianaLiberty Mutual$208
LouisianaASI Lloyds$377
LouisianaState Farm$455
LouisianaAllstate$542
MassachusettsState Farm$131
MassachusettsTravelers$190
MassachusettsMerrimack$206
MassachusettsArbella$227
MassachusettsCitation$274
MassachusettsLiberty Mutual$672
MarylandUSAA$141
MarylandState Farm$188
MarylandTravelers$241
MarylandAllstate$299
MarylandErie$448
MainePatrons Oxford$76
MaineConcord$102
MaineState Farm$116
MaineTravelers$142
MaineAllstate$162
MaineYork$322
MichiganHome Owners$127
MichiganState Farm$248
MichiganMembers Select$270
MichiganFarm Bureau$273
MichiganCitizens$280
MichiganAllstate$319
MinnesotaAuto Club$97
MinnesotaState Farm$127
MinnesotaTravelers$129
MinnesotaAmerican Family$140
MissouriLiberty Mutual$118
MissouriState Farm$156
MissouriShelter$168
MissouriAmerican Family$196
MissouriTravelers$211
MissouriFarmers$298
MissouriAuto Club$306
MississippiTravelers$175
MississippiLiberty Mutual$197
MississippiState Farm$265
MississippiNationwide$342
MississippiAllstate$433
MississippiMississippi Farm Bureau$446
MontanaLiberty Mutual$73
MontanaUSAA$82
MontanaTravelers$125
MontanaState Farm$131
MontanaTrinity Universal$212
North CarolinaNorth Carolina Farm Bureau$159
North CarolinaErie$187
North CarolinaTravelers$196
North CarolinaState Farm$232
North CarolinaLiberty Mutual$247
North CarolinaNationwide$250
North DakotaAmerican Family$60
North DakotaState Farm$93
North DakotaNodak$111
North DakotaFarmers$174
NebraskaAmerican Family$124
NebraskaTravelers$125
NebraskaState Farm$126
NebraskaFarm Bureau$142
NebraskaFarmers$224
New HampshireVermont Mutual$100
New HampshireAmica$105
New HampshireTravelers$125
New HampshireState Farm$126
New HampshireLiberty Mutual$137
New HampshireConcord$145
New JerseyState Farm$126
New JerseyTravelers$146
New JerseyChubb$159
New JerseyAllstate$178
New MexicoLiberty Mutual$107
New MexicoUSAA$129
New MexicoState Farm$150
New MexicoTravelers$259
NevadaLiberty Mutual$87
NevadaTravelers$125
NevadaAmerican Family$164
NevadaState Farm$166
NevadaUSAA$172
New YorkState Farm$129
New YorkNew York Central$150
New YorkAllstate$201
New YorkLiberty Mutual$336
OhioCincinnati$109
OhioErie$113
OhioTravelers Prop Cas Ins Co$138
OhioLiberty Mutual$152
OhioState Farm$191
OhioAmerican Family$268
OhioNationwide$287
OklahomaUSAA$80
OregonLiberty Mutual$93
OregonTravelers$125
OregonFarmers$129
OregonState Farm$144
OregonAmerican Family$160
OklahomaLiberty Mutual$178
OklahomaTravelers$192
OklahomaState Farm$204
OklahomaShelter Mut Ins Co$244
PennsylvaniaErie$112
PennsylvaniaTravelers$136
PennsylvaniaState Farm$138
PennsylvaniaAllstate$182
PennsylvaniaNationwide$394
Rhode IslandAmica$139
Rhode IslandLiberty Mutual$163
Rhode IslandState Farm$196
Rhode IslandMetropolitan$224
Rhode IslandAllstate$238
Rhode IslandTravelers$299
Rhode IslandNationwide$570
South CarolinaUSAA$162
South CarolinaState Farm$186
South CarolinaSouth Carolina Farm Bureau$196
South CarolinaTravelers$202
South CarolinaAllstate$216
South DakotaAmerican Family$75
South DakotaState Farm$86
South DakotaAllstate$119
South DakotaTravelers$130
South DakotaFarmers$223
South DakotaLiberty Mutual$266
TennesseeUSAA$118
TennesseeTravelers$160
TennesseeAuto Owners$182
TennesseeState Farm$208
TennesseeTennessee Farmers$354
TennesseeLiberty Mutual$537
TexasLiberty Mutual$131
TexasTravelers$151
TexasUSAA$152
TexasState Farm$307
TexasAllstate$809
UtahTravelers$82
UtahState Farm$125
UtahAmerican Family$146
UtahBear River$153
UtahFarmers$167
VirginiaUSAA$65
VirginiaState Farm$122
VirginiaTravelers$126
VirginiaErie$132
VirginiaAllstate$149
VirginiaFarmers$202
VirginiaLiberty Mutual$243
VirginiaNationwide$292
VermontConcord$64
VermontVermont Mutual$100
VermontState Farm$115
VermontTravelers$125
VermontCo Operative Insurance$132
VermontUnion$147
WashingtonLiberty Mutual$120
WashingtonPemco$122
WashingtonState Farm$125
WashingtonTravelers$125
WashingtonUSAA$149
WashingtonAmerican Family$154
WashingtonFarmers$205
WisconsinAuto Owners$107
WisconsinWest Bend$108
WisconsinState Farm$122
WisconsinAmerican Family$138
WisconsinLiberty Mutual$144
WisconsinTravelers$161
West VirginiaState Farm$132
West VirginiaErie$169
West VirginiaState Farm$197
West VirginiaAllstate$203
West VirginiaLiberty Mutual$270
West VirginiaNationwide$403
WyomingState Farm$132

Despite the importance of renters insurance, just 37 percent of renters have this coverage, according to III. But Herndon urges you not to join those who forsake coverage. 

“Bottom line, there are many more benefits to consider with renters insurance than just guessing whether you have enough stuff to protect,” Herndon says.

Methodology:

Insurance.com commissioned Quadrant Information Systems to provide renters insurance rates for nearly every ZIP code in the country from up to six major insurers. Coverage includes medical payments coverage of $5,000, contents replacement at replacement value and loss of use at 10 percent of personal property limit.

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