Do you live in an apartment complex that requires you to have a renters insurance policy? More and more property owners and landlords are requiring renters to have a renters insurance policy set up and in-force before move-in. Perhaps you purchased a renters insurance policy, submitted your insurance documents to the office thinking you met the requirement, but you are then informed that your policy is being declined because there is an error with the additional interest, and you cannot move in until it’s corrected. Well, what is an additional interest, and why do you need one on your policy anyway?
What is an additional interest?
On your renters insurance policy, an additional interest simply means a party that will be notified of any changes to your policy. The types of changes the additional interest will be notified of typically include cancellations, lapses in coverage, or renewals.
Simply put, an additional interest will be notified only about changes in the status of your renters insurance policy.
Now, where this can sometimes get confusing is that an additional interest sounds very similar to an additional insured. Even though both sets of words start with the same letters, the meanings are very different.
An additional insured is someone who can make changes to a policy, whereas an additional interest cannot. Read more about the differences in our article Additional Interest Vs. Additional Insured.
This is so confusing, that sometimes even insurance agents, underwriters, companies, and everyday people can confuse the two.
An additional interest may also be referred to as an interested party. An interested party is the same thing–someone who has an interest in what happens to the status of the policy, but cannot make any changes and is not extended any coverage by the policy.
What changes can an additional interest make to my policy?
Why do I need to list an additional interest?
Since the additional interest will be notified of any policy changes, many landlords or insurance certificate monitoring companies require being listed as the additional interest. They need to be informed of changes to make sure residents are still in compliance with the terms of their lease agreement.
For example, let’s say a man named Bob wanted to move into an apartment. One of his lease requirements was that he needed to have a renters insurance policy. Bob didn’t particularly want to buy a renters insurance policy, but he wouldn’t be able to get his keys and move into the apartment until he provided acceptable proof of coverage. So he purchased a policy and then canceled the policy immediately after move- in. If his apartment complex didn’t require an additional interest to be listed on the policy, they would not know he was not in compliance with the terms of his lease, and if Bob caused a loss, he would be a very expensive problem indeed.
Long story short, landlords and property owners want to be listed as the additional interest so they know that their renters are helping to protect their investment.
I have an additional interest listed on my policy, but my proof of insurance was still declined. Why?
One of the most common mistakes we see on people’s insurance certificates is with the additional interest, and many times, it is extremely simple to fix. Some common errors made in the additional interest section of a renters insurance policy include the following:
- The address of the apartment leasing office is listed, instead of the address of the office that monitors the insurance certificates
- The address of the resident is listed, instead of the address of the office that monitors the insurance certificates
- The additional interest section of the insurance policy is left blank
- The address listed in the additional interest section is some other address, instead of the address of the office that monitors the insurance certificates
These are a few of the more common reasons that we see here at Effective Coverage for insurance certificates being declined. Essentially what it all boils down to, is that the additional interest name and address need to align with whatever the requirements are that are specified in your lease.
If you need to know how to add your landlord as an additional interest, click to read our guide, or call us anytime. Our insurance experts are here 7 days a week to answer any questions you may have.