Contents Insurance

Contents insurance, or personal property insurance, is coverage for “your stuff” (bikes, laptops, TVs, etc.)

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Contents insurance is an important part of your renters insurance policy.

Contents insurance is a key part of renters (and homeowners) insurance, and it provides financial protection for your valuable stuff in various situations. It’s sometimes referred to as “personal property coverage,” or “Coverage C.”

What is contents insurance?

Contents insurance is one part of your renters insurance policy. It covers the financial loss from damage or theft of things like furniture, laptops, clothing, and other valuables. 

What does contents insurance cover?

Contents insurance covers your personal property against certain types of damage. In the insurance industry, bad things that can happen to your stuff that are covered by your policy are called “named perils.” For renters insurance, that generally includes things like:

  • Theft and vandalism
  • Fires
  • Certain types of water leaks and water damage
  • Windstorms

Some real life examples where contents insurance would help

Contents insurance can help in a wide range of scenarios, including some that you may have never thought about. Here are a few concrete cases in which you’d be able to file a claim:

  1. If a kitchen fire damages your rented home, contents insurance would cover the cost of replacing or repairing your belongings, up to the policy’s personal property coverage limit.
  2. Let’s say a burglar hits your apartment. Contents insurance would reimburse you for the stolen items, including high-value items like laptops and mobile phones.
  3. Contents insurance can help if your personal belongings are damaged due to a leak or other water damage (though flooding is excluded).

In many cases, including with Lemonade Renters, your insurance company will compensate you for the replacement cost of your belongings, minus your deductible. 

How much contents insurance do I need?

The amount of contents insurance you need depends on the value of the personal property that you’re trying to protect.

Do yourself a favor. Before signing up for renters insurance, take a look around your place and go over these three simple steps to save time (and money!) later:

  1. Stroll around your apartment, and take pictures (or a video) of your personal property
  2. Make a list of valuable items, and estimate how much they cost
  3. For bulk items like shoes, or kitchen supplies, give ’em a nice round number
  4. Add all of this up, and round to the nearest $10K to determine how much coverage you’ll need

For example, if you have $27K worth of items, you should choose a personal property coverage amount of $30K.

If you already have a Lemonade Renters policy, you can increase your coverage limits at any time—though doing so will affect your premium. 

Other parts of your renters insurance policy

We mentioned that contents insurance is only a piece of your entire renters insurance policy. So what do the other pieces do? Well, there’s:

  1. Renters personal liability coverage: This protects you against claims arising from accidental injury to others or damage to their property while in your rented home.
  2. Additional living expenses coverage (aka ‘Loss of Use’): If you have to temporarily leave your rental due to a covered event, this will help pay for temporary accommodations, like a hotel or Airbnb, as well as certain expenses for food or laundry.

What contents insurance doesn’t cover

It’s essential to wrap your head around any exclusions in your contents insurance policy to avoid surprises when filing insurance claims. Some common exclusions are:

  1. Wear and tear or depreciation: Insurance policies generally don’t cover the cost of home items that have gradually deteriorated over time. 
  2. Some valuable items, like expensive jewelry or artwork, may benefit from additional endorsements or add-ons that provide extra protection—like coverage against mysterious loss, or accidental damage. That’s called “scheduling personal property,” and it can come in handy for things like engagement rings—learn a lot more here.
  3. Your policy documents will list specific perils that are not covered, such as earthquakes or floods.

Does contents insurance cover your family members or roommates?

At Lemonade, contents insurance (and your renters insurance policy overall) does not cover roommates who aren’t related to you. They’ll want to get their own policies—more on this here

Blood relatives, as well as spouses, would be covered by your contents insurance.

How much does contents insurance cost?

The average price of a Lemonade Renters insurance policy in the US, as of early 2024, is around $14/month.

Your policy premium depends on things like the deductible and coverage limits you choose, as well as any valuables you’ve added to your policy (aka “scheduled”). 

Basic renters insurance policies start with a personal property coverage limit of $10,000. Increasing that to $30,000 is usually a smart idea, and it likely won’t send your price soaring. Plus, it might mean that you’ll end up paying less out-of-pocket later in the event of a claim.   

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Please note: Lemonade articles and other editorial content are meant for educational purposes only, and should not be relied upon instead of professional legal, insurance or financial advice. The content of these educational articles does not alter the terms, conditions, exclusions, or limitations of policies issued by Lemonade, which differ according to your state of residence. While we regularly review previously published content to ensure it is accurate and up-to-date, there may be instances in which legal conditions or policy details have changed since publication. Any hypothetical examples used in Lemonade editorial content are purely expositional. Hypothetical examples do not alter or bind Lemonade to any application of your insurance policy to the particular facts and circumstances of any actual claim.