Renters insurance statistics and facts 2021

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The cost of renters insurance depends on several factors, such as your credit score (in most states), claim history, the overall value of your belongings and where you live. The costs associated with renting a space – including utilities and your renters insurance policy – vary by hundreds of dollars from state to state.

When deciding what you can afford to rent, utilities and renters insurance costs can be important considerations. We look at the average costs and statistics concerning renters insurance in 2021 based on the latest expert studies and industry research.

Important Renters insurance statistics

  • Based on the total cost to rent (including renters insurance, utilities and monthly rent), California and Hawaii are the most expensive states to rent in the U.S. (Bankrate)
  • 44.1 million of U.S. households rent their homes. (iProperty Management)
  • 35.9% of U.S. households rent their homes. (iProperty Management)
  • There are about 109 million renters in the U.S. (iProperty Management)
  • The average renter has a total of 2.48 residents in the home. (iProperty Management)
  • 35.4% of housing units were occupied by renters in 2019. (U.S. Census)
  • Of rental units, 16.2% house people over the age of 65. (U.S. Census)
  • The average cost of renters insurance is $179 per year. (Insurance Information Institute (Triple-I))

Renters insurance statistics 2021

  1. More than one-third of people rent their homes. (iProperty Management)
  2. The average monthly housing costs for a renter in 2019 were $1,301 per month. (U.S. Census via iii)
  3. South Dakota has the cheapest renters insurance at $127 per year. (Triple-I)
  4. Mississippi has the most expensive renters insurance, with an average premium of $252 per year. (Triple-I)
  5. Renters insurance costs have decreased from an annual average of $190 in 2014 to $179 in 2018. (Triple-I)
  6. The national U.S. vacancy rate has dropped to 6.8% as of the first quarter of 2021, which is 0.3 percent higher than the total occupancy at the end of 2020. (U.S. Census)
  7. Of renters in 2019, 49% were under the age of 30. (National Multifamily Housing Council)
  8. The metropolitan areas with the highest number of renters in 2019 include New York, Los Angeles, San Diego and Miami. (National Multifamily Housing Council)
  9. The states with the most renters include New York, California, North Dakota and Maryland. (National Multifamily Housing Council)
  10. Studies show that renting is most popular among those between the ages of 35 and 64 and those with children. (Triple-I)

Renters insurance costs are decreasing over time

It’s only natural to expect inflation over time, but the opposite appears true for renters insurance. In 2014, renters insurance companies charged $190 per year for renters policies, on average. By 2018, the average average renters insurance premium was $179 per year, which came after a series of decreases over several years, according to the Triple-I.

Average Renters Insurance Premium, 2014-2018 (Triple-I)

Year Renters insurance Percent change
2018 $179 -0.6%
2017 $180 -2.7%
2016 $185 -1.6%
2015 $188 -1.1%
2014 $190 1.1%

More people are renting now than ever before

The latest data from the U.S. Census shows a national vacancy rate of 6.8% in the first quarter of 2021, 0.3 percent higher than occupancy at 2020’s year-end. Rental vacancies were down in 2020 due to coronavirus. With everyone sheltering in place and businesses closing down, renters were more focused on riding out the federal rent moratorium than finding a new place to live.

However, a 2020 study from Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies shows that between 2016 and 2018, there was a continued increase in high-income renters. This signals a massive shift in trends since the 2000s when low-income renters comprised 93% of total renter growth.

In 2021, rental vacancies are down, signifying more long-term rentals. As the U.S. begins to emerge from the shadow of COVID, rentals will likely become increasingly popular in 2022 and beyond.

Rental Vacancy Rates, 2018-2021 (U.S. Census)

Year 1st quarter 2nd quarter 3rd quarter 4th quarter Year total
2021 6.8% 6.2%
2020 6.6% 5.7% 6.4% 6.5% 25.2%
2019 7.0% 6.8% 6.8% 6.4% 27%
2018 7.0% 6.8% 7.1% 6.6% 27.5%

How much is renters insurance and rent?

To determine the total cost to rent, we calculate the average cost of renters insurance and utilities by state for a total cost percentage of insurance each month. Our calculations show that some states pay considerably more in insurance and rent than others. California, Hawaii, New York, and the District of Columbia all face the highest overall costs to rent.

State Avg. renters insurance cost (/yr.) Avg. renters insurance cost (/mo.) Average price of utilities Average cost of rent Total cost to rent Percentage of total cost for insurance
Alabama $222 $19 $356 $989 $1,364 1.4%
Alaska $175 $15 $496 $1,529 $2,040 .74%
Arizona $175 $15 $335 $1,375 $1,725 .87%
Arkansas $211 $18 $269 $875 $1,162 1.5%
California $178 $15 $320 $2,542 $2,877 .52%
Colorado $164 $14 $267 $1,751 $2,032 .69%
Connecticut $188 $15 $421 $1,474 $1,910 .79%
Delaware $157 $13 $355 $1,373 $1,741 .75%
District of Columbia $157 $13 $278 $2,358 $2,649 .49%
Florida $185 $15 $300 $1,620 $1,935 .78%
Georgia $214 $18 $367 $1,360 $1,745 1.0%
Hawaii $181 $15 $422 $2,333 $2,770 .54%
Idaho $152 $13 $299 $1,271 $1,583 .82%
Illinois $166 $14 $279 $1,563 $1,856 .75%
Indiana $172 $14 $375 $1,031 $1,420 .99%
Iowa $144 $12 $304 $941 $1,257 .95%
Kansas $172 $14 $319 $944 $1,277 1.1%
Kentucky $166 $14 $343 $1,000 $1,357 1.0%
Louisiana $234 $20 $310 $1,110 $1,440 1.4%
Maine $149 $12 $320 $1,436 $1,768 .68%
Maryland $161 $13 $363 $1,674 $2,050 .63%
Massachusetts $191 $16 $315 $2,211 $2,542 .63%
Michigan $185 $15 $286 $1,196 $1,497 1.0%
Minnesota $140 $12 $258 $1,409 $1,682 .89%
Mississippi $252 $21 $300 $986 $1,307 1.6%
Missouri $179 $15 $381 $945 $1341 1.1%
Montana $147 $12 $265 $1,268 $1,545 .78%
Nebraska $149 $12 $312 $1,062 $1,386 .87%
Nevada $182 $15 $245 $1,380 $1,640 .91%
New Hampshire $148 $12 $319 $1,591 $1,922 .62%
New Jersey $160 $13 $306 $1,837 $2,156 .6%
New Mexico $186 $16 $232 $1,169 $1,417 1.1%
New York $189 $16 $366 $2,221 $2,603 .61%
North Carolina $158 $13 $289 $1,211 $1,513 .86%
North Dakota $126 $11 $283 $1,006 $1,300 .85%
Ohio $169 $14 $355 $1,033 $1,402 1.0%
Oklahoma $236 $20 $278 $894 $1,192 1.7%
Oregon $161 $13 $269 $1,559 $1,841 .71%
Pennsylvania $157 $13 $313 $1,273 $1,599 .81%
Rhode Island $185 $15 $332 $1,443 $1,790 .84%
South Carolina $184 $15 $389 $1,245 $1,649 .9%
South Dakota $127 $11 $279 $968 $1,258 .87%
Tennessee $195 $16 $322 $1,190 $1,528 1%
Texas $225 $19 $364 $1,359 $1,742 1.1%
Utah $155 $13 $290 $1,441 $1,744 .75%
Vermont $153 $13 $266 $1,668 $1,947 .67%
Virginia $152 $13 $333 $1,606 $1,952 .66%
Washington $160 $13 $308 $1,825 $2,146 .6%
West Virginia $189 $16 $388 $866 $1,270 1.3%
Wisconsin $143 $12 $256 $1,115 $1,383 .97%
Wyoming $146 $12 $299 $1,105 $1,416 .85%

Most expensive states for renters insurance

While the cheapest renters insurance in the U.S. costs less than $130 per month, you will pay much more in some other states. Many southern states have higher than average rates for renters insurance. Renters in Mississippi pay more than $250 per year for their renters insurance, on average. Renters in Oklahoma, Louisiana, Texas and Alabama experience some of the highest renters insurance premiums in the country, paying more than $220, on average.

The five most expensive states for renters insurance include:

  • Mississippi: $252
  • Oklahoma: $236
  • Louisiana: $234
  • Texas: $225
  • Alabama: $222

Least expensive states for renters insurance

Many states in the Midwest and West offer cheap renters insurance. The cheapest state for renters insurance is South Dakota, coming in at only $127 per year. In Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa and Wyoming, the average cost of renters insurance comes in under $150.

The five least expensive states for renters insurance include:

  • Wyoming: $146
  • Iowa: $144
  • Wisconsin: $143
  • Minnesota: $140
  • South Dakota: $127

With the cost of rent decreasing over five years, it’s understandable that many hope the trend will continue. There is no denying that some places are far more affordable than others to rent. Just like the cost of rent varies from place to place, the total cost to rent also depends significantly on where you live in the U.S.

Written by
Lena Borrelli
Insurance Contributor
Lena Muhtadi Borrelli has several years of experience in writing for insurance domains such as allconnect, Healthline and Reviews.com. She previously worked for Morgan Stanley.
Edited by
Insurance Editor