The number of 20-39 year olds renting has more than doubled from 20 to 50 per cent since 2000. Known as ‘generation rent’, many millennials are unable to afford the average house price of £217,502 (as of Feb 2017), which continues to grow by about 6 per cent each year. Until home ownership becomes more attainable, renting is likely to remain a popular choice. If you rent, don’t assume your landlord will cover your contents insurance. You should consider purchasing tenants insurance to avoid suffering financial losses due to damaged or stolen property.
Tenants insurance is a form of contents insurance that’s designed to protect your possessions from flood and fire damage as well as theft if you are renting a property. It is pretty much indistinguishable from standard contents insurance that you would take out as a homeowner. It’s only if you’re an individual (or couple) renting a room in a house share or flatshare that you’ll need to check a few key extra conditions tailored to your circumstances. However, 60% of millennials say they don’t have tenants insurance, according to a recent industry survey. Even worse—42 per cent say they don’t know whether insurers even offer products for tenants.
For young people struggling with their finances, insurance is probably the last thing on their minds. However, the possibility of a costly loss due to a fire, theft or host of other reasons is no less relevant. In fact, it may be even more so—when asked in a recent survey about their number one reason for not buying insurance, only 18 per cent of millennials reported feeling safe and secure in their flats.
To help keep your possessions safe, consider purchasing insurance specifically tailored for rented property. You want to make sure this covers possessions within the rented property and perhaps even “away from home” personal possessions cover for valuable items that you frequently take away from home, such as laptops, tablets, smartphones, cameras and bikes. You should decide whether you want your landlord’s fittings and any furniture listed on your cover and make sure any of your high value items are listed individually on your policy too.
Beyond the obvious items of electronics and furniture, many people underestimate the value of their contents. This can lead you to getting less than the value of your items if you need to make a claim. For example, if you insured £10,000 of possessions when you actually have £20,000, and you need to claim, you will only have 50% if your contents protected. Some insurance policies carry an “average clause”, which means the insurance company can reduce your claim by the % you are under-insured. Items that are commonly overlooked are clothing, shoes, handbags, jewellery and items left in the loft, garage or outbuildings. When you are adding up their value to get an idea of the level of cover you need, don’t forget to value your possessions at their new replacement cost.
At A-Plan, we can explain the cover options available for insuring the items inside your rented home and make sure you get the protection you need. We will also spend time guiding our clients through the process of valuing their contents and can also give them a handy checklist of items to include.