Q: What is Rental Insurance?

A: Rental insurance is a type of insurance designed to replace a tenant’s personal property in the event their property is damaged/destroyed or stolen. There is a variety of coverage options to choose from that range from basic to comprehensive coverage.

Q: What Steps Should I Take to Break My Lease?

A: Breaking a lease is a difficult matter between you and a landlord. Technically, breaking your lease is not illegal but there are repercussions when you do so. The best course of action is to discuss the matter with your landlord and find someone to sublet the property from you. This way the landlord is not incurring the cost of not having a tenant in the property and will likely not report you to a credit bureau.

Q: What Types of Rental Insurance Should I Be Aware of?

A: There are a few different rental insurance types you should be aware of and depending on where you live these are subject to change.

  • Basic – covers your possessions in the event of a fire, burglary and weather related damages. This policy may not cover you in the event of a flood or storm surge if you live in coastal regions.

  • Comprehensive – includes everything from the basic coverage as well as some additional expenses. What is covered will depend on the area you live in but comprehensive coverage will cover against additional events.
  • Rider – rider policies are added to your current rental insurance policy and will protect higher price items such as jewelry and antiques.

Q: Which Responsibilities Are Mine and Which Are the Landlords? A: Landlord and tenant responsibilities are mostly common sense with specifics spelled out in the lease agreement. Generally, the landlord is responsible providing a habitable residence for incoming tenants and for fixing damages to the property caused by wear and tear. The tenant is responsible for the upkeep of the property. Additional mandates are specified in the lease agreement.

Q: What Should I Do If I Get a Pet That Is Not In the Lease? A: The best course of action is to contact your landlord prior to getting a pet, especially if there is a “no pet” clause in the lease agreement.