Under Alberta’s Residential Tenancies Act, a landlord is only responsible for ensuring the rental premises are habitable. They should have an insurance policy to cover damages from things like hail, fire or wind. This will help cover the costs of repairing the rental unit and replacing anything belonging to the landlord (such as if it’s a furnished apartment).
However, renters are not covered by the landlord’s insurance. Anything belonging to you, such as your clothing, furniture, electronics, bikes and other items, won’t be covered if they were damaged. You’ll need to replace your stuff out of pocket or purchase your own renter’s insurance. Your personal liability will also not be covered by your landlord’s insurance.
For example, let’s say there was sewer backup in your Calgary rental. Luckily, your landlord had sewer backup coverage on their insurance so the cleanup and repair of the flooring were covered. But your personal items and furniture that was damaged by the sewer backup won’t be covered – unless you have your own renter’s insurance policy with sewer backup protection.
Here’s a personal liability example: An acquaintance stops by your rental apartment and decides to goof around on your tiny workout trampoline. Unfortunately, they fall and hurt themselves. They can’t get to work for a while and decide to sue you to cover their expenses. If you don’t have your own personal liability insurance protection, you’d be responsible for covering your legal costs including awards and settlements.
Why am I not covered by my landlord’s insurance?
Your landlord’s insurance policy is designed to protect the landlord and their property. This policy will cover the structure of the rental as well as any property belonging to the landlord such as furniture. It will also cover your landlord’s liability. But this policy specifically excludes any protection for the renter’s personal belongings or liability.
What happens if I don’t have renter’s insurance?
If you don’t have renter’s insurance, you’ll need to pay out of pocket to cover your expenses. Your landlord’s insurance won’t cover you.
What is covered by renter’s insurance?
A renter’s insurance policy offers three main areas of protection:
- Property Damage – Helps cover the replacement of your belongings if they’re damaged by an insured peril like fire.
- Personal Liability – Helps cover legal and other related expenses if someone is hurt or has their property damaged by your unintentional actions.
- Additional Living Expenses – If you’re forced from your rental due to a covered claim or insured peril, this helps cover your additional expenses for things like accommodation, food and transportation.
Exactly what’s covered will depend on your individual policy.
Is renter’s insurance affordable?
Yes, renter’s insurance is very affordable. It’s often less than a few hundred dollars a year.
Your rates will depend on your address, how much insurance coverage you want, your insurance history, and other factors.
Speak to one of our brokers to get a renter’s insurance quote or to learn more about this coverage today.