We were recently asked by someone who has Fort Worth Renters Insurance why their landlord needs their declarations page, and how that impacts their privacy. It’s actually an excellent question, and worth taking a look at.
First of all, let’s look at the privacy issue. There is not a single piece of information on your renters insurance declarations page that the landlord doesn’t already have direct knowledge of. Your name, your address, your policy number, the fact that you have enough liability coverage to meet their requirements, the policy effective date and end date… Those are all things that you’ve told the landlord already.
On top of that, your declarations page will contain information about the additional interest on your policy. The landlord already knows he’s the additional interest, because he’s the one that asked you to add that provision to the policy. There’s not a thing on there that raises a privacy question.
On top of that, you’ve agreed to give proof of coverage to the landlord. When did you agree to that? Likely when you signed a lease with him that has a renters insurance requirement and asks that the landlord be named as additional interest. So there’s no real privacy issue here, because there’s nothing you haven’t already shared with the landlord.
Why Does My Landlord Need My Declarations Page?
The bigger question, then, is why your landlord needs your declarations page at all.
Some landlords don’t. For example, if your community works with Effective Coverage and you have a policy through us, they’ll never ask you for a dec page. That’s because the entire process of notifying them about the status of your coverage is electronic, and handled through a proprietary platform that talks directly to their property management software.
But if your landlord still tracks these things by hand, or in an Excel spreadsheet, or by some other ancient method, they’ll need a copy of your policy. They don’t want the actual policy, of course. That could run to fifty or sixty pages and would just not be practical to keep on hand. They just want to know you have coverage.
They’re looking for limits, dates, address, names, and the additional interest.
Your landlord requires a certain amount of liability insurance coverage. They want to make sure that you do, in fact, have that amount of coverage. That’s on your declarations page. The landlord wants to know that if you caused a loss, you’d be able to be financially responsible for that loss. It’s that simple. By having the dec page with the limits right on it, the landlord has what they need.
Making sure that everyone has liability insurance coverage in the community isn’t just in the interest of the landlord, either. It also is in the interest of other residents who want to be sure that if someone hurts them or causes them to suffer property damage that the person who caused the loss can pay for it. That makes the entire community run more smoothly.
Policy Term/Dates Of Coverage
Your landlord needs your declarations page to make sure that the policy term, or dates of coverage, are appropriate. They’ll want to see the same thing at the renewal. Rarely, a landlord will try to say that they want the lease dates and the policy dates to match, but that’s impractical and rare. Your policy term should cover dates you’ll be living in the residence, of course.
This helps the landlord to know that everyone has coverage. Having this information also helps the landlord to know when to ask you for a copy of the renewal declarations to make sure you continue to have coverage. That prevents unnecessary check-ins by the landlord, which saves you time and energy.
Insured Residence Premises Address
The landlord wants to see the address of the insured residence premises on your declarations page to make sure that you’re covering the right location. You’d be amazed how many people have a policy, but forget to update the address on it when they move!
While you do technically have some overlapping coverage while you’re in the process of moving your principal residence, that’s temporary and not what the landlord is looking for. They want to know the specific address that you’re insuring, and if it needs to be updated they’ll ask you for a new copy.
Many landlords say that they want to see the names of all residents on the policy in some fashion. While this may not be strictly necessary because “named insured” generally includes your spouse and relatives that live with you, it’s prudent for them to ask because policy forms and definitions do vary slightly between underwriters sometimes.
Adding your spouse or relatives that live with you doesn’t give them any coverage they don’t already have, but it does reassure the landlord that they have that coverage in force. This is a positive thing. In addition, your landlord will want to see that roommates are covered somehow.
Can you cover roommates on renters insurance? Sure, there are a couple of different ways to do it. The best way, though, is for each of you to have your own policy. That way you know for certain that everyone has the right coverage, and that checks for claims will be made out to the correct names even if a roommate later moves out and is replaced.
The last thing the landlord will want to see on your policy is the additional interest. Seeing it on your declarations page helps the landlord to know that they’ll be notified if there’s a significant change in policy status, and also helps the landlord to be sure that those notifications will go to the correct address.
Additional interest doesn’t give the landlord any coverage, it just makes sure that they know the status of the policy.
There are a wide variety of reasons that your landlord would want your declarations page, and none of them invade your privacy. To find out more, or to get covered, just call (800)892-4308 or click to get covered - whether you need Fort Worth renters insurance quotes online or coverage anywhere else!
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