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Does Renters Insurance Cover Water Damage? 

Renting a home comes with many conveniences. You don’t have to worry about repairs and upgrades because the property owner typically handles this. In some instances, the owner may even take care of some maintenance for you, like changing the HVAC filters or mowing the lawn. However, what happens if a water accident occurs and your property gets damaged? Who is responsible then? For example, if a pipe bursts or the washer leaks all over your personal property. Does renters insurance cover water damage? This question may not seem relevant now, but if water comes gushing out of some source all over your personal belongings, it will be much more important to you. 

If you rent your home, it’s important to have a solid policy with the proper stipulations and addendums. You never know when an emergency may occur, and you don’t want to be left without any financial support options. 

Water damage can happen even in the most well-maintained homes. So, when purchasing a renters policy, you will want to find out the answer to your question if it comes up, “Does renters insurance cover water damage?” 

Understanding Renters Coverage 

Whether you have purchased a policy or not, you’ve probably considered it. You may be unsure about what renters insurance does or doesn’t cover. You may have wondered if you really needed it. Isn’t the property owner supposed to pay for damages that occur since it’s their home? This is part true and part false. 

The property owner is responsible for damages caused to the structure of the home and any other buildings on the property. For example, if a fire occurs, the owner would be responsible for replacing any part of the structure that gets damaged, like walls, cabinets, flooring, appliances, and so on. However, renters insurance covers your personal belongings, such as clothing, jewelry, electronics, and other items. In the fire example, you would also need to move out temporarily while the place is repaired. Again, the policy comes to the rescue, providing living expenses during the repairs. 

Renters insurance provides coverage for other things, too, like liability issues. For example, if you have a pet that bites a guest and they sue you, your policy kicks in to help cover legal costs. This can also apply to injuries incurred by a guest slipping and falling in your home. 

A fire is just one example of how a structure and its contents can get damaged. Whether it’s the property owner’s policy or the renter’s policy, there are other scenarios that might cause problems for a home. These are listed in your policy as a “covered peril.” Insurance is designed to cover many of the situations that cause property and personal damage that happen because of one of these perils. 

A frequently asked renters insurance question is whether your policy covers water damage. Who is responsible in the event of a water-related issue? First, it’s important to know how the issue occurred. 

The Difference Between Water and Flood Damage 

It’s natural to question, “Does renters insurance cover flood damage?” Floods are one major cause of water problems. Additionally, a flood is likely to damage your personal belongings if it gets into the home. 

However, only certain types of water damage are covered by renters policies, and flooding is generally not one of them. You will need a separate renters flood insurance policy to cover the damage caused by a flood. 

Does Renters Insurance Cover Water Damage? 

Most renters insurance policies cover the following types of water damage. It’s best to talk to your agent to determine if the policy contains any restrictions. Here are some water issues generally covered under a renters policy 

Pipe Bursts 

Renters insurance will likely help you recover the cost of any personal property damage if a pipe suddenly bursts. However, it’s important to note that the harm must occur suddenly and be some type of accident. It may not be covered if it resulted from something you did to cause the break. 

Water Leaks 

A sudden leak springing up under the bathroom sink could wreak havoc on your personal property. You probably have hair care tools, products, cosmetics, and more stored in places that a leaky sink could reach. If you have renters insurance, you may be able to recover the cost of your goods. Leaks in the kitchen could ruin your expensive pots and pans.

Woman sitting on the floor, worried about water leak in her sink and calling for help - Affordable Renters Insurance in Georgia  

Toilet Overflow 

It’s not fun when the toilet overflows due to some mechanical problem. There may be some damage to your belongings. As long as the toilet overflow isn’t a result of negligence, you may be able to recover the costs of the damaged personal property. 

Snow or an Ice Dam 

When ice and snow melt, it can lead to significant issues, especially if it gets inside the home. You don’t need to worry about external damages because the landlord is responsible for that. However, if the ice and snow harm the roof and water makes its way into the home, damaging personal property, then you may have a claim on your renters policy. 

Water Damage Generally Not Covered with a Renters Policy 

Your renters policy won’t cover every type of water damage. Keep the following situations in mind and check with your agent about other types of coverage if you think these are things you may encounter at home. 

Water Damage Stemming from Wear and Tear 

Normal wear and tear can lead to damaged pipes, which a renters policy normally doesn’t cover. In most instances, it must be due to an unexpected occurrence. 

Sewer Line Damage 

Renters policies usually don’t cover water damage associated with sewer lines. You can check with your insurer about adding that to the current policy. However, in most cases, it won’t be automatically included. 

Negligence on Your Part 

It’s critical that you don’t ignore any water-related problems. In most cases, they won’t just disappear on their own. In other words, if you have a little leak, it will lead to a bigger problem and more damage. Insurance won’t cover the damage that resulted because of your negligence. 

Since every policy can vary, and there are some odd renters insurance situations that may be covered, it’s important to consult with your insurance agent to clarify the details tied to your specific coverage. 

The Importance of Additional Flood Insurance 

You might not think that flooding is a concern for your home, but you’d be surprised at how many situations can lead to internal flooding. In fact, just about every county in the U.S. has dealt with flooding and its financial consequences. Being prepared by purchasing renters insurance with flood coverage is the only way to be fully protected. 

The difference between a flood insurance claim and a water damage claim is usually where the water originates. In most cases, flood damage comes from a natural source, such as a storm. This is not the same as other water issues. 

The property owner likely has a flood insurance policy on the structure. This covers internal and external damage to the home. However, a renters flood insurance policy will cover your personal property. 

Get Covered Today with Affordable Renters Insurance

Now that you know more about this particular type of insurance and how water damage is covered (or not covered), you can make an informed decision about purchasing a policy with Southern Harvest Insurance. In addition, an agent can discuss adding flood coverage. When you’re ready to secure the most affordable rate on your insurance, reach out to the friendly professionals at Southern Harvest. We can provide a quick renters insurance quote online. Call us at (877) 831-4677 to speak with a representative, or find an office near you.