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What Does Renters Insurance Cover?

Protection typically includes property losses and liability payments (each up to purchased limits) that are the result of covered causes.

What’s Covered?

To understand how renters insurance works, it helps to first understand what it typically covers.


TV and speakers

Property coverage*

Pays you for damage to, or theft of, your personal property (yours only, not property of roommates) even if it happens away from your rental

Wrist injury

Liability coverage*

Payments you may be required to make as a result of someone filing a claim against you for medical expenses or property damages

Home with fire damage to roof

Loss of use*

Pays for additional living expenses if a covered loss results in your place being temporarily uninhabitable

*Up to purchased limits

When Does Coverage Apply?

Frustrated woman holding bucket under leak.

Property coverage kicks in when a loss is incurred as a result of an event or situation covered under your policy, known as a covered peril. Covered perils can vary by insurer, but commonly covered examples include damage from:

  • Fire and smoke
  • Windstorms
  • Building collapse
  • Lightning
  • Theft and vandalism
  • Frozen pipes

Liability coverage kicks in when someone files a claim against you for damages, either to their property or for injuries experienced while on your covered rental property.

Check with Your Provider

Renters insurance policies can vary greatly from one provider to the next, both in terms of what’s covered and when coverage applies. There can also be significant variability in terms of standard or base level coverage amounts.
Consequently, it’s smart to understand the details of your specific policy as well as your options for modifying the policy to fit your unique situation. Speak to your insurance provider to gain a better understanding of your coverages. 

Key Takeaway: Policies vary greatly. Make sure you understand the details of your policy and opportunities for modifications that will make it fit your needs better.