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A decade ago, mandatory renters insurance was so rare that landlords who tried to impose it risked losing tenants.

Today it’s as much a part of the rental process as a security deposit, credit check, and first month’s rent. Renters insurance is not required by law, but most landlords ask their tenants to purchase renters insurance before signing the lease agreement to avoid any dispute that may arise from damage to the renter’s belongings, according to Insurance Information Institute.

Your renters insurance policy will protect your personal belongings in the event of damage or theft. It also provides liability coverage if someone gets injured on the premises.

  • Renters insurance is a kind of protection that covers for damage done to the property by tenants’ negligence.
  • Renters insurance is not required by law, but landlords ask for it as they don’t wish to feel responsible for any damage to renter’s property. 
  •'s rate analysis shows that the national average yearly cost for a renters’ policy is $347, or about $29 a month.

Why do landlords require renters insurance?

Landlords require that tenants have renters insurance. This ensures that the landlord will not be held responsible for any damage to a renter's property if something bad happens, like a fire. The renter's insurance will cover any losses from these types of events.

If the tenant's renters policy covers damage to the renter's personal belongings, there might be fewer claims against the landlord's insurance policy.

How much does renters insurance cost?

Rates vary based on coverage amounts, the renter’s credit history, and where he or she lives. Based on an rate analysis, the national average yearly cost for a renters policy with coverage levels of $40,000 for personal property, a $1,000 deductible and $100,000 of liability protection is $347, or about $29 a month. Vermont Mutual is the cheapest renters insurance provider with an average rate of $130 per year. Louisiana has the highest renters insurance rates, at $540 a year. Wyoming has the lowest, at $183 per year.

To find out how much renters insurance you need and to see how much you can expect to pay, use's average renters insurance rate tool, which shows rates by ZIP codes for 75 coverage levels.

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