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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Fire Insurance for Renters

3/4/2020 (Permalink)

Renter insurance form on a table with a calculator and a pair of glasses It is important to understand how renters insurance covers fire damage

A fire at your Ballwin, MO, rental home can be a very stressful event. Fortunately, insurance can help you with everything from temporary living expenses to contents restoration. It is important to understand how renters insurance covers fire damage so that you will be prepared if you ever experience a home fire.

What Insurance Covers

As a renter, your policy will not cover the actual building structure in the event of a fire. The landlord’s insurance will cover that. Many insurance policies for renters will cover the following in the event of a non-criminal fire:

  • Liability
  • Third party medical expenses
  • Temporary relocation expenses
  • Contents

The exact coverage varies from policy to policy, so be sure to check with your agent to ensure you have sufficient coverage. Additionally, make sure your contents coverage will pay replacement cost rather than actual cash value. Due to depreciation, it may be very difficult to replace your belongings if you are only insured for their current value.

How To Document Fire Damage

When you file a claim with your renter's insurance, the first thing to do is call your insurance company. They may have specific instructions for documenting fire damage. You will likely need to take detailed photo or video of the property. The insurance company will also schedule to send an adjuster to assess the damage. Ideally, you will have a home inventory on hand. This is a list of all the items you own, including purchase dates and prices for expensive items such as furniture and electronics. You should create the inventory when you move into your home, update it regularly and keep a copy, either physical or digital, in a secure location.
After you have documented all the damage and filed a claim with your renters insurance, it is time to begin the fire restoration process. Depending on the extent of the damage, you may need to hire a certified restoration company to help you get your belongings back to pre-fire condition.

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