Renters insurance is financial protection for renters. A renters policy covers your personal property if it is stolen or damaged by a named peril; your personal liability if you injure someone else or damage someone else’s property; and additional living expenses if your home becomes unsafe to live in and you need to stay elsewhere, like a nearby hotel.
Renters insurance is one of the cheapest insurance products you can buy, costing an average of $15 a month. You may also qualify for renters insurance discounts, which are generally given for factors like safety measures you install in your home. A standard renters insurance policy will last for twelve months and automatically renew the next year, however there are some exceptions to this, like if your insurance company no longer wants to cover you or if you need to adjust the coverage levels of your policy.
When does renters insurance automatically renew?
Most renters insurance companies will automatically renew your renters policy after twelve months. Generally, your renters insurance company will contact you around 30 to 60 days before the renewal.
When contacting you about your automatic renewal, your insurance company will provide you with general information or changes to your renewed policy.
Policy rates (whether they’ve increased, decreased, or stayed the same)
New enrollment periods
Coverage changes (if you increase or decrease your coverage)
If you do not receive communication from your insurer towards the end of your renters policy term, you should contact them about renewal. They might automatically renew your policy without telling you if there are any new terms. It’s also beneficial to you to contact them about renewal, especially if you have new personal property that you want covered or if you need to increase your coverage levels.
If you move, you should also contact your insurance company. Usually, you can easily transfer your insurance policy to your new address. That said, renters insurance premiums factor in the city and ZIP code you live in, so your policy rates may change slightly when you move.
When does renters insurance not automatically renew?
Since most renters insurance companies will automatically renew your policy (unless otherwise stated) it’s not usually a good sign if they want to end coverage.
There are specific reasons why an insurance company might not renew your policy.
You let your policy lapse: If you don’t make your monthly or semi-annually premium payments to your renters insurance company, your coverage lapse and you will no longer be protected. Your insurance company is required to give you a 30-day grace period to catch up on your premium payments before cancelling your policy.
You’ve become too much of a risk: Some insurance companies will not renew your policy if you’ve become too much of a risk. This means either you’ve filed a surplus of claims throughout the year or have demonstrated negligent or risky behavior.
Canceling your renters insurance policy
Canceling your renters insurance policy is generally pretty easy. Most insurance companies will allow you to cancel online or through a mobile app. Other insurers will require a written document confirming cancellation, either by email or snail mail. You don’t have to cancel when your policy is up for renewal, you can typically cancel a renters policy at any time.
Cancellation terms will be written out in your insurance policy. That said, there factors to consider before canceling your renters policy.
Does your landlord require you to have an insurance policy? If your lease requires renters insurance and you do not have one in force, it could be grounds for eviction.
Do you still need coverage? If you cancel your policy you will have no protection for your personal belongings or liability.
Are you moving? If so, you can simply transfer your renters policy to your new address.
Are you moving in with a roommate? You still need your own coverage even if you live with a roommate, unless they’re specifically adding you to their policy.
Have your renters insurance premiums become too expensive? You should talk to your insurance company about adjusting your coverage and discuss potential discounts. Most insurance companies will offer discounts for safety features like deadbolt locks, and for bundling your renters insurance with another insurance policy, like car insurance.
Learn more about when you should and should not cancel your renters insurance policy.