The holiday season is upon us, the time of year that's all about family, friends, giving thanks, and spreading holiday cheer.
Over the next few weeks, most of us will be donning our thinking caps, trying to plan that ideal Thanksgiving dinner or come up with the perfect gift for that special someone on Christmas morning. But if you're a renter, this is also the time of year where you should add some protection to your finances with a renters insurance policy.
It's unfortunate that it's the case, but a number of people are stolen from during the holidays. According to a 2013 survey conducted by FTI Consulting, insurance claims for theft rise nearly 10% in the weeks leading up to Christmas.
Some renters are under the impression that their landlord's insurance policy provides protection in the event they're stolen from. In reality, though, this only covers structural damage that results from a weather-related incident or fire. Only renters insurance replaces stolen possessions, up to the limits of the policy.
The following are a few other reasons why you might want to add renters insurance to your holiday shopping list:
When clocks fall back, theft surges forward
Everyone gains an extra hour of sleep when the clocks change to standard time, but some are unfortunate enough to lose their belongings, as theft tends to increase in the fall/winter months. According to a recent study done by researchers from Cornell University, robbery incidents increase 7% when Daylight Saving Time ends. Renters insurance can replace items that are stolen.
Deliveries eyed by thieves
With online sales expected to climb this year, expect to have more than a few visits from letter and package carriers. Unfortunately, thieves know this, and are often brazen enough to steal packages left when residents aren't at home, as reported by The New York Times. To avoid this, arrange deliveries so that you have to sign in order for packages to be left. Renters insurance can also serve as a protection.
Renters more at risk for theft
It may come as a surprise, but renters are more at risk for theft than homeowners are. According to estimates from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, residents are more susceptible to burglary as renters than as property owners, whether at home or away.
For more information on renters insurance, check out the Insurance Information Institute's website for a checklist.