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Renters currently make up just over 30% of the housing market, which means that a sizable portion of the U.S. population rents. If you are a renter and don’t already have a renters insurance policy, you may want to consider buying one. Renters insurance primarily covers your personal belongings from covered losses and provides liability coverage in case you are found at fault for injuries or damages to guests’ property.
Renters coverage is generally inexpensive, with an average annual cost of just $179 per year, according to the Insurance Information Institute (Triple-I). If you also have a vehicle to insure, you may be able to bundle your auto and renters insurance to save on both policies. Bankrate breaks down the bundling process so you can decide if it is right for you.
What does it mean to bundle auto and renters insurance?
Bundling your renters and auto insurance just means buying both policies from the same insurance provider. Bundling can help you get more affordable renters insurance and car insurance. In exchange for having multiple policies insured with a provider, most companies offer a bundling discount, also referred to as a multi-policy discount, when you buy both policies.
You will usually have two separate policies with two different policy numbers, although some companies assign the same policy number to bundled policies. Auto insurance and renters insurance offer two different types of coverage — one for your vehicle and liability while driving, and one for your personal belongings and guest liability, respectively — so maintaining the two policies is usually necessary.
Coverage for your driving and vehicle
Nearly every state legally requires drivers to carry at least a minimum level of auto insurance. But outside of car insurance being a legal requirement in most states, it’s also beneficial for drivers. If you get into an accident, the at-fault driver’s insurance can pay out for your vehicle’s damages and medical bills if you get injured. If you cause an accident, your insurance policy covers the other driver’s losses, limiting the amount of money you have to pay out of pocket.
When purchasing car insurance, however, keep in mind that opting for the minimum amount of coverage could leave you without adequate protection in the event of an accident. Most insurance agents recommend purchasing higher liability limits to better protect your finances. It often helps to consider purchasing a full coverage policy to extend coverage for damage to your own vehicle.
Additionally, the best car insurance companies will likely offer endorsements that you could add to your policy. These coverage types are optional, but can provide valuable financial protection. Common endorsements include:
Coverage for your stuff
Unlike auto insurance, states don’t require that you purchase renters insurance. However, many landlords will require you to buy a renters insurance policy and will probably dictate the minimum liability coverage you have to purchase. Renters insurance protects your finances in a few different ways. Namely, it offers coverage to replace your personal items if they get damaged in a covered claim. It also covers your liability if a guest gets injured in your apartment or if you accidentally damage your unit or the apartment building.
Basic renters insurance policies usually include these coverage types:
- Personal property coverage is the primary renters insurance coverage and pays for damage to your belongings, like your furniture, clothes and home goods, after covered losses and up to certain limits.
- Additional living expenses kick in if you can’t stay in your apartment after a loss. Also called loss of use coverage, it could help pay for hotel bills, restaurant meals and pet boarding up to certain limits.
- Liability coverage protects your finances if you are found at fault for guest injuries or damage to a guest’s property. Liability coverage can also pay for legal fees if you are sued and need to defend yourself.
Many renters policies also include medical payments coverage, which pays for guest injuries regardless of fault. Just like car insurance companies, the best renters insurance companies usually have endorsements that can help you personalize your coverage. You might be able to add identity theft coverage, scheduled personal property (for high-value or unique items) or coverage for business equipment.
Will bundling auto and renters insurance save me money?
It might. Most companies that offer both auto insurance and renters coverage will give you a discount on both policies. If you plan to purchase both policy types, getting quotes for both from the same company could be worth your time.
The average cost of full coverage car insurance is $1,655 per year, or about $137 per month. Renters insurance costs an average of $179 per year, or about $15 per month. Bundling discounts are often some of the most significant savings that a company offers. Buying your auto and renters insurance from the same company could lower the price for both your policies.
Bundling auto and renters insurance policies
If you want to bundle your auto and renters policies together, you have options. If you already have one policy in place, like renters insurance, reach out to the renters insurance company that currently insures your apartment to get a quote for car insurance. Make sure it includes the multi-policy discount on your policies, if possible.
If you don’t have any insurance coverage right now, you can gather quotes for both auto and renters insurance. Companies may show you the multi-policy discount online while using their quoting tools, or you can call them and speak to an agent. An agent may be able to help you understand how much you would save by bundling your policies together.
Can I bundle other policies?
It depends on the company. Bundling discounts are most common for auto and property insurance — like home, renters and condo policies — but some companies offer a discount for bundling your auto with other types of insurance too. Depending on your auto insurance company, you might get a bundling discount for buying car insurance with:
- Boat insurance
- RV insurance
- Motorcycle insurance
- Umbrella insurance
- Life insurance
Each company has different guidelines around discounts. Talking with a company representative is the best way to determine if bundling additional policies will save you money.
Pros and cons of bundling
Bundling car and renters insurance can deliver some perks but also comes with some drawbacks you may want to consider.
Ultimately, bundling your auto and renters insurance together will usually help you save money and might make managing your policies a little easier. But having all your policies in one place could have drawbacks, so be sure to weigh the options to decide if bundling is right for you.
|Usually saves money||May still need to buy certain types of coverage with another carrier; not every company offers every type of insurance.|
|Generally easier to manage policies when they are with one company||Could be more work to change companies since you have more than one policy to switch|
|Might be able to combine billing, so you get one monthly statement|
Ultimately, bundling your auto and renters insurance together will usually help you save money and might make managing your policies a little easier. But having all your policies in one place can have drawbacks, so be sure to weigh the options to decide if bundling is right for you.
Frequently asked questions
Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze 2022 rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Quoted rates are based on a 40-year-old male and female driver with a clean driving record, good credit and the following full coverage limits:
- $100,000 bodily injury liability per person
- $300,000 bodily injury liability per accident
- $50,000 property damage liability per accident
- $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per person
- $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per accident
- $500 collision deductible
- $500 comprehensive deductible
To determine minimum coverage limits, Bankrate used minimum coverage that meets each state’s requirements. Our base profile drivers own a 2020 Toyota Camry, commute five days a week and drive 12,000 miles annually.
These are sample rates and should only be used for comparative purposes.