Does My Renters Insurance Cover a Roommate?
No. If you are the only individual listed on a renters insurance policy, it will not cover your roommate unless they are also listed on the policy. It’s advised that each roommate purchases their own renters insurance policy.
Renters insurance pricing is based on a variety of factors and is assessed for one individual. With more policyholders the likelihood of a claim is much higher, so even though you live in the same apartment, each of you should purchase their own coverage.
Why roommates are excluded from your renters insurance:
Your roommate is excluded from your renters policy since pricing takes only one person and their personal belongings into account (here’s what renters insurance covers). It is based on a wide variety of factors and adding your roommate may complicate the whole process.
In addition, more policyholders increase the possibility of reporting a claim and this risk is not included in the pricing. And your coverage limit will be the same but with your roommate included, it will be divided between the two of you in case of any loss. As a result, you’ll receive smaller reimbursement and will have to pay the missing amount out of your pocket.
Can you add your roommate to your renters insurance policy?
Theoretically yes, but it’s not advised. Several insurance providers permit roommates to share a renters policy, but there’s no guarantee that this option will save you money.
Renters insurance is usually inexpensive so you won’t have to pay too much for your own policy. They can cost around $20-30 per month but the rate may be even smaller. If you add a person who lives with you, the whole process will become more complicated.
It’s unlikely that your and your roommates’ possessions are worth the same amount of money, so how would you know how much each of you should pay per month? Or per year, assuming you opt for paying in full?
What are the risks of sharing renters insurance with roommates?
Your coverage limit won’t increase if you add another person to the policy and will be split between the two of you. Also, there are limits set for each claim. For example, your policy can cover the loss of personal electronics (computers, cell phones, etc), up to a specific amount. Let’s say both your and your roommate’s smartphones were stolen and yours was worth 5x more – the insurer will only pay out compensation mentioned in the policy, so you’ll have to cover the rest.
The whole process of filing a claim would be more complex with more than one policyholder, too. If your roommate has to report a claim, it will be registered to the Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (CLUE) which is investigated by insurance companies while assessing auto and property insurance prices.
As a result, this claim will be recorded in your CLUE report, even though it was filed by your roommate. There is a risk this can cause an increase in your home/renters and auto policy premium.
Can you share renters insurance with a roommate?
If you’d like to share renters insurance with your roommate after all, here are some guidelines how to do that:
Prepare a home inventory for both of you
Each of you needs to have a list of your personal belongings along with prices. It will help you decide on coverage limits and will expedite the process of reporting a claim if you ever need to do that. Here’s how to prepare a home inventory.
Purchase the policy and then add your roommate’s name
If that option wasn’t available during the application process. If you need help assessing which insurer will be the best fit for you, contact Gabi! We’ll go through many offers from the nation’s top companies to find the most affordable option for you. Sign up here and save time on renters insurance shopping!
Adding a roommate to your renters policy is usually not recommended as it can create a lot of confusion. You will have to share coverage limits which won’t be raised due to having more than one policyholder. The process of submitting a claim will become more complicated and it may be difficult to split monthly payments between renters equally. However, if you’d like to share a policy with your roommate, you can still do that.
If you need any help, sign up here and get a free quote and assistance from our licensed insurance agents today!