In short, tenant insurance is not mandatory in Ontario, but it’s probably one of the smartest things a renter can do to protect themselves from threats and disasters.
We do know, however, that most property managers and landlords in Ontario include a requirement in their leases for their tenants to have an insurance policy. While this cannot really be enforced, some landlords may not accept an application if their prospective tenant refuses to have insurance.
Why requiring Tenant Insurance is important to protect a landlord’s investment
With each space a landlord rents out, they take on more risk. A risk could be that the tenant will not leave the rented space in the same condition it was when they got it, or they accidentally burn the place down or cause very expensive damage to the rental property.
And while accidents happen, whether intentional, unintentional or just stupidity, as a renter, your actions could cost you thousands of dollars to repair if you are not covered by a tenant insurance policy.
For example; you may start a fire in the kitchen when you are cooking dinner for your date.
Maybe you throw a party and one of their friends who is smoking on the patio puts their cigarette butt out in a flower pot. The flower pot smolders before engulfing the wood deck in flames, eventually spreading to the siding of your house and your neighbour’s house causing $2.7 Million dollars in damages.
You go out for the evening and come home to find one of your shoes on the front porch. You think to yourself, ‘this is odd’ and then you realize that the front door of your unit is open. You go inside and find that almost everything has been stolen; your tv, your stereo, jewelry, clothing, shoes, your iPad. Can you afford to replace the stuff that makes your life go round?
What happens if you go back home for the weekend and accidentally leave a kitchen tap on, or the toilet overflows and floods the space, and possibly the apartment below you?
Why having Tenant Insurance is important to cover your ass.
Unfortunately for tenants, a landlord’s insurance will not protect your personal belongings or offer you any legal protection in the event you are sued.
Whatever the case may be, the damages listed above need to be repaired and your personal possessions will need to be replaced. Your landlord will come after you and sue you for the damages you have unintentionally caused and you’ll be left with out-of-pocket expenses.
If you have tenant insurance you can be protected from losing out. Your contents insurance will cover the costs to purchase new replacement items, up to your coverage limit; your personal liability will protect you if you are sued by your landlord for damages, up to your insured amount and if you are forced out of your place for any duration of time due to repair work as a result of a claim, you’ll be covered with additional living expenses for accommodations, food, moving and other costs.
Why tenant insurance is a good thing.
When a landlord requires tenant insurance as a condition to rent space in their building, they can potentially lower their risk but it also is good for the tenant to be insured.
Affordable peace of mind is within reach, and we even sell tenant insurance online with just a few questions to answer. You can sleep well at night knowing you are protected. Protect yourself and your possessions for about a buck a day.
*Please note, this article is not intended to be advice. The best advice this blog will give is to call your Broker for advice.