Whether you’re managing multi-family units or single family homes, as a property manager, a large part of your job is to maintain the condition of the property you are managing. That’s why it’s in your best interest to encourage your residents to purchase renters insurance.
What most renters don’t realize is that in the event of a fire, theft, or other disaster, while property insurance will cover structure loss, it will not cover replacement of possessions, or thwart a lawsuit from an accident that happens at their home or apartment.
While policy types and premium costs vary according to needs, most renters insurance policies are extremely affordable, ranging from $250.00 to $350.00 a year. This is a minimal investment to ensure that both the property owner and the resident are covered.
For instance, If Lisa is renting from a property management company and she accidentally starts a grease fire that damages the property and also burns the apartment next door, it’s not the property manager, nor the owner that is responsible for paying for the damage. It’s Lisa’s responsibility. With renters insurance, those damages are taken care of; otherwise the cost of those damages comes out of her pocket.
Here are some important items to think about:
Let them know before signing a lease.
If you’re considering implementing a policy that requires residents to purchase renters insurance, be sure that ALL prospective applicants are aware of this prior to filling out an application, and well before signing a lease.
Make it easy to understand.
Lay out coverage requirements in an easy to read document that residents can refer to when looking to purchase the required coverage.
Ensure levels purchased are sufficient.
While it’s important for residents to be able to purchase insurance from their desired company, it’s up to management to ensure that the levels purchased are sufficient. You may also want to consider teaming up with an insurance partner that can offer current and future residents an easy way to purchase renters insurance.
Communicate the benefits.
Be sure to show residents the benefits they will derive from having this protection. Many renters are unaware that their possessions are not covered by management/owner insurance.
Give them payment options.
Consider implementing a program where residents can pay their renters insurance premiums with their rent.
Renters insurance is an absolutely marvelous resource that most renters do not take advantage of. Requiring residents to purchase renters insurance is a win-win for both property managers and residents, and an affordable way for both of you to have some peace of mind.