Not every apartment or rental property requires renters insurance, but the amount that do are steadily increasing. If your landlord requires tenants to carry renters insurance and you’re caught without, you could be evicted. This requirement must be specified in the lease, however. If there is no specification in the lease that you must carry renters insurance, the landlord cannot legally evict you for not carrying it.
Why Do Landlords Require Renters Insurance?
Landlords require renters insurance mostly to protect other tenants. The only piece of renters insurance that a landlord requires is liability insurance. Liability insurance provides compensation if you (the policyholder) causes bodily injury or property damage to someone else. This often includes damage and injury caused by your pets, as well. Without this insurance, you (or in rare cases, your landlord) could be held liable for an accident you cause.
Renters insurance doesn’t just benefit other tenants, however. If a lawsuit falls on your lap and you don’t have renters insurance, you could be looking at paying expensive medical bills and medical fees out of pocket. Renters insurance covers other aspects than liability, as well. A typical renters insurance policy also covers:
· Personal Possessions: Personal possessions coverage provides compensation for your personal belongings (clothes, books, some technology, etc.) in case they’re lost or damaged due to fire, smoke, theft or vandalism.
· Additional Living Expenses: In case the apartment is damaged beyond habitation, additional living expenses (ALE) helps with the cost of temporarily living somewhere else while the apartment is being repaired.
What Happens if You Get Evicted for Not Having Renters Insurance?
Typically if you are caught not having renters insurance, a landlord will provide you a “notice of quit or correct.” This gives you the opportunity to purchase renters insurance before being evicted. If you purchase renters insurance, the landlord will likely rescind the notice. If you don’t, however, then you may be drawn to court. From there, it’s up to the court to decide whether the landlord has a right to evict you. Immediate eviction is illegal in most states. Landlords should give you several days to correct the issue. Be sure to research the eviction laws in your state when searching for an apartment. It’s important to know your rights as a tenant so you know when your landlord is encroaching on your personal or legal rights.