The Land Of Lincoln Is Linking Up With Illinois Renters Insurance
How Many Tenants have Illinois Renters Insurance?
- Thirty-seven percent of Illinois residents rent their homes statewide.
- Urban areas like Chicago, Carbondale, Springfield, Urbana, and Champaign tend to have the highest number of renters.
- Many of these areas with concentrated renters also have concentrations of students, increasing the number who rent.
- Illinois property values are increasing, making a home purchase cost-prohibitive for many residents.
Only forty-four percent of those renters have renters insurance. The majority of renters don’t have the Illinois tenant protections they deserve. While you’re protected by state law from certain landlord behavior, the law doesn’t protect you from being sued by your landlord after a fire. Illinois renters insurance is the only way to secure your family, your assets, your property, and your future.
Effective Coverage is the premier provider of Illinois renters insurance. We’re in tune with the coverage and budget needs of renters, and we know that people have a variety of reasons for renting. Can you get renters insurance without a lease in Illinois? Does it matter why you’re renting?
- If you live somewhere that you do not own, you can get renters insurance in Illinois.
- Students with roommates can get a policy for each roommate.
- You don’t have to be in the state yet. If you’re moving from out-of-state, once you find an apartment, you can buy renters insurance before your move-in date.
- If you’ve sold your home and downsized to an apartment, you really need renters insurance because you have substantial retirement accounts to protect.
Whatever the reason you rent, coverage is important. Your lease probably requires it, and one liability claim is all it takes to wipe out everything you’ve accumulated over the years.
Why Do Some People Go Without Renters Insurance?
There are a number of common misconceptions about insurance that lead to people not having coverage. At Effective Coverage, we work hard to correct these misunderstandings through education. Renters insurance is affordable and accessible in Illinois, so it’s truly unfortunate when an uninsured loss happens simply because someone wasn’t aware they could be protected.
- Some believe that insurance is only available to homeowners.
- Renters insurance is like homeowners insurance, but without the dwelling coverage – or the cost.
- Some believe renters insurance is outside their budget.
- The average renters policy in Illinois is about $15.00 a month.
- For the cost of a pizza delivery, you’re covered against massive life-changing losses.
- If you live with friends, you can get a policy and then move it when you get your own place.
- Just about everyone is eligible for renters insurance in Illinois. Just call Effective Coverage at (800)892-4308 and speak with an insurance expert or click above to get covered in 60 seconds. It’s that easy!
At Effective Coverage, we’ve made the process of getting covered easier than ever before. Our mission is providing solutions for those buying insurance, because insurance is our world, and we want you to get back to yours. We focus on innovation that makes it easy to get covered so that you can get the protection you need and then get back to living your life. Effective Coverage was born as an online insurance provider, but there’s always a friendly insurance expert available to answer your questions on the phone, as well. Just call (800)892-4308.
Illinois Renters Insurance Guide Table Of Contents
- Can I Afford Illinois Renters Insurance?
- What Does Illinois Renters Insurance Cover?
- Are Broken Pipes Covered By Renters Insurance In Illinois?
- Do I Need Illinois Renters Insurance?
- How Can I Save Money On Renters Insurance In Illinois?
- Can Roommates Share Illinois Renters Insurance?
- What's Not Covered By Illinois Renters Insurance?
- Can I Buy Illinois Renters Insurance As A Gift For My College Student?
- Bonus Section: Guide To Renting In Illinois
Can I Afford Illinois Renters Insurance?
Yes! Just about every household can afford Illinois renters insurance. If you’ve been worried about the cost, worry no more. Considering the amount of coverage that you get for personal property and liability, you may be wondering why the policy is so affordable. That’s a great question.
Why Is Renters Insurance So Affordable?
- Renters insurance policies are derived from homeowners policies.
- Your renters policy doesn’t include rebuild coverage on the dwelling because you’re not obligated to cover that cost.
- Renters policies give you all the protections of a homeowners policy, without the one expensive coverage you don’t need. That keeps the cost way down.
- Renters insurance also poses a lower potential liability risk, which also helps to drive down the cost. Most renters don’t have attractive nuisances and less risk of someone being injured in your yard – if you have a yard, it’s likely smaller than a homeowners’ might be.
The difference in exposure, or worst-case amount to be paid out by the company, is a large part of what makes renters insurance in Illinois so affordable. Another thing that helps is the number of people who have coverage. More people with coverage means a larger pool of people paying premiums. That helps to drive costs down for everyone. The calculations are somewhat more complex, of course, but it’s accurate.
The average price of Illinois renters insurance is about $187.00 per year, or fifteen dollars a month. Most budgets can afford that, and the protection greatly benefits the very people who might have trouble paying for a policy. If fifteen dollars a month is a budget strain, replacing everything you own out of your own pocket would be a much larger imposition.
Having renters insurance in Illinois can even save you money. If your landlord mandates that you have insurance and you’re not covered, they’ll charge you a fee as part of your rent. That fee will either go to a loss recovery fund for uninsured losses, or to pay for a policy that covers your liability on the premises and only on the premises. You get far less or no protection at all from these fees. One community in Chicago charges twenty-five dollars every month you don’t have insurance. That’s like throwing ten bucks a month away!
What Does Illinois Renters Insurance Cover?
Have you ever wondered if your Illinois renters insurance would really protect you in the event of a loss? While reading the policy is the only way to know what your policy covers, here’s a general list:
Personal property coverage is there to protect your things from fire, theft, vandalism, and a long list of named perils. It’s usually at replacement cost, so you can go buy new things – even if the property suffering the loss was old.
Liability pays for bodily injury or property damage that you cause to someone else by being negligent. It also pays to defend you against the claim. Whether you accidentally bump into someone and knock them down or turn away from the stove and cause a cooking fire, liability coverage is there to protect you.
Illinois renters insurance includes two more types of coverage which are commonly overlooked. Loss of use pays for additional living expenses after a covered loss. If there’s major water damage from a burst pipe, you’ll need to stay in a hotel and have other expenses. Medical payments to others is designed to make a small payment to a guest who is injured on your premises, even if there is no fault. It’s an easy way to resolve minor issues.
If you have questions on the specifics, read on or call a friendly insurance expert at (800)892-4308.
Are Broken Pipes Covered By Renters Insurance In Illinois?
Yes. Burst pipes are specifically covered by renters insurance in Illinois. The pipe itself is not your responsibility in an apartment, and the policy doesn’t cover repairs to the pipe. That’s on the landlord. The policy is designed to cover actual losses to personal property as well as your additional living expenses while your home is being dried out. There are two important distinctions to be aware of, though.
Frozen pipes within your dwelling unit are covered as long as you made a reasonable effort to maintain heat in the dwelling. We remember one resident who went away for the weekend and left the window open to vent the bathroom after a shower… In February. Needless to say, significant water damage resulted.
That claim was paid because she had left the thermostat at a reasonable temperature. Her liability coverage kicked in for damage to other residents, because leaving the window open in the winter was clearly negligence. But don’t go away for the weekend and turn off the heat entirely to save money – you know better, and an intentional act when you know better is not negligence.
The other distinction to consider is water backup of sewers and drains. If you have damage from water or water-borne material that backs up through a toilet, sink, drain, or similar outlet, that’s covered by the water backup endorsement. However, if a sewer pipe in your building breaks, that is a burst pipe and you’d have coverage for the significant resulting damage. The difference is a broken pipe versus water coming back from someplace it should be draining out of.
Do I Need Illinois Renters Insurance?
Yes, you need Illinois renters insurance. Anyone who doesn’t own the place in which they live needs the coverage. It’s that simple.
Your landlord’s policy doesn’t protect your property, nor would it protect you from a lawsuit. Your landlord’s policy protects your landlord and the building. Any coverage you have comes from your own policy. With theft on the rise and apartment fires always a concern, you need a policy. Remember that renters insurance in Illinois travels with you. Both liability and personal property coverage apply wherever you are.
You need Illinois renters insurance if your neighbor sues you for an injury or property damage. The case might not go anywhere – anyone can sue anyone for anything, but whether they’ll win is another story – but you’ll need defense against that lawsuit. Your policy provides defense coverage even if the claim has no merit. Life is unpredictable, and there are situations every day that require coverage. You need renters insurance to protect your family, your assets, and your future.
How Can I Save Money On Renters Insurance In Illinois?
- Work with the insurance experts at Effective Coverage to make sure you get the coverage you need, without spending more than you have to.
- Professionally installed alarm systems often lead to discounts.
- Illinois renters insurance is partially rated on a credit-based insurance score. Some companies rate both spouses, others only rate the primary applicant.
- Your location is important – get quotes for Illinois renters insurance at your potential location before signing a lease.
- Proximity to the fire department and other safety factors impact price by changing your protection class.
- Often, there is claims-free discount. If you’re entitled to it, make sure you get it.
- You could select a $1,000 deductible, but only if you can afford to retain $1,000 of risk. This may offer a small savings, but depends on your risk tolerance.
There are many other ways to save money on renters insurance in Illinois. Just ask your Effective Coverage insurance expert. To the extent that discounts are available, we apply them proactively where you’re eligible.
Can Roommates Share Renters Insurance In Illinois?
That depends on what your definition of “share” is.
If you’re thinking of sharing renters insurance in Illinois with someone you just split an apartment and bills with, you might want to reconsider. A policy sometimes makes available an endorsement that would allow roommates to share renters insurance. Like all endorsements, it materially changes the policy and you should read it carefully. How does this endorsement work?
- One person still owns the policy.
- Coverage for roommates is added to the policy by endorsement.
- You as a roommate do not become an insured under the policy language.
- There is no increase in the coverage limits. You’re stuck with whatever number the named insured thinks is appropriate.
- A roommate’s property is covered at the insured’s request – the roommate can’t call and make a claim on their own.
- The named insured is still personally responsible for payment of the premium.
- The check for a claim is made out to the named insured only. That means a roommate has no automatic right to the proceeds of a claim.
As you can see, that’s a less than ideal situation for a roommate who is covered by endorsement. The roommate endorsement is also expensive for what it provides, often costing almost much as a policy of your own. This is rarely the best way to share renters insurance with roommates in Illinois. Each person should have a policy of their own. It’s the only way to be sure you have the coverage that all renters are entitled to.
On the other hand, if you want to share coverage between two people who are living together unmarried, that is often possible. Both people would be named insureds on the policy, and a check for a claim would be made out to both of them. Both would be equally legally entitled to the proceeds. Unmarried couples sharing renters insurance is quite possible, but you need to understand the potential risks of it. Here again, the policy limits don’t change unless you increase them to account for the additional personal property and the additional liability risk to your joint future.
If “roommate” refers to a spouse during a trial separation while both living in the same location, that person is still legally your spouse and still legally resident in the home. Coverage would still apply under the definition of “named insured” in the policy. The time to be concerned is when separating into different homes. Then, you’ll each need your own policy.
For roommates who are simply sharing an apartment, the best solution is for each person to have their own policy. That allows each person to decide what limits are appropriate for them, and also ensures that any payment issues don’t impact coverage for everyone else. The check for a claim would be made out to the named insured, as it should be. Individual policies greatly simplify both coverage questions and claims.
What's Not Covered By Illinois Renters Insurance?
- Intentional acts which result in a loss
- Criminal acts which result in a loss
- Business property
- Business liability
- Water backup of sewers and drains, unless you’ve added the endorsement
- High-value jewelry may require additional coverage, see the Renters Insurance Guide To Jewelry Coverage
- Personal property of anyone not named on the policy as a named insured (broadly defined and often includes resident spouse or resident relatives) or as an other member of household
There are other types of losses that aren’t covered. Losses from perils not named in the policy wouldn’t be covered. Fortunately, the list of renters insurance perils is both lengthy and broad. You’ll want to read the policy, and you can always call Effective Coverage and ask an insurance expert.
Can I Buy Illinois Renters Insurance As A Gift For My College Student?
Yes, you can buy Illinois renters insurance as a gift for your college student. Your college student, the named insured, will need to sign the application in their own name in order for coverage to be valid. It’s easier if you and the student are on the phone at the same time, to ensure that the coverage is appropriate. That allows us to determine if there is a risk that you might be responsible for their apartment, and to see that there is sufficient coverage so that your renters or homeowners policy wouldn’t have to respond to a loss.
Renters insurance is a great way to remind your college student that you care about them!
Bonus Section: Guide To Renting In Illinois
Renting In Illinois
Illinois has many strong tenant protections. Some of these are statewide, and some are by city ordinance in larger cities such as Chicago. You’ll need to make sure you understand both types of protections.
Mandatory Written Disclosures
When renting in Illinois, landlords are required to disclose several things in writing.
- If you pay part of a utility on a single master meter, that has to be disclosed.
- The landlord also has to show you the agreement and formula that determines your share of the master metered utility.
- Rent concessions of any kind in Illinois must be described in very specific ways.
- If a landlord knows or has reason to know of radon, they must disclose that in writing.
- Landlords are not required to test for radon, but many things give rise to “have reason to know” as noted above.
Rent And Deposits
Are there limits on Illinois security deposits? When does the deposit need to be returned? What about deposit disputes? How are rent increases handled in Illinois?
- Illinois state law does not limit the amount of your security deposit.
- Local ordinances may supersede state law and provide their own security deposit limits.
- Your security deposit and an itemized list of any deductions must be returned to you within a specified amount of time.
- If you agree with the list of deposit deductions, the landlord has thirty days to return the deposit.
- If you dispute security deposit deductions, the remainder must be returned within forty-five days.
- Rent increases in Illinois require at least 30 days written notice.
Rent can’t unilaterally be increased during the term of the lease. A lease is a contract between you and the landlord which runs for a specific period of time. That time may often be twelve months. Some leases renew for a term, some renew month-to-month, and some are in the initial term. A rent increase can only happen at renewal. If you’re month-to-month, the notice period is 30 days plus the remainder of the current month.
Illinois law protects tenants from retaliation for taking advantage of any tenant rights you may have. One area where you have limited protection is when the landlord is foreclosed upon. You’re entitled to notice, but even in the city of Chicago your protections are limited. Remember that if your landlord isn’t paying their mortgage, they probably also aren’t paying insurance. If you cause damage, the foreclosing bank will sue you. Renters insurance defends you against the suit and can pay for the damage.
Apartment Repairs And Maintenance
- Landlords must maintain the property in a state that is fit to live in.
- The law also requires landlord compliance with any applicable state or local codes or ordinances.
- As noted above, the landlord can’t retaliate against you for using your rights.
- An example of illegal retaliation might be a reduction in services, or a mid-lease increase in rent.
- Tenant protections make sure that you can report code violations and force repairs of truly unsafe living conditions.
- You can repair and deduct in Illinois, but please check with a local tenants’ rights organization first because there are specific rules and regulations.
- Following repair and deduct rules to the letter is the difference between forcing repairs and a suit for non-payment of rent.
- Illinois also provides for rent withholding if the landlord doesn’t pay the utilities and you must start them in your own name.
- As always, any action against your landlord should be carefully considered, within the bounds of the law, and with legal assistance.
Finding An Apartment In Illinois
The difficulty of finding an apartment in Illinois varies greatly depending on your location. In both very rural areas and cities, finding a good rental can be a challenge. Rents, of course, vary widely as well. Broadly speaking, Illinois can be divided into several separate and distinct housing markets.
We found one community in lovely Decatur, IL offering a studio for $385 monthly. Their most expensive apartment is a two-bedroom, which goes for $710 monthly. Utilities, of course, are not included at that price. Neither is the hundreds of gallons of gasoline you’ll need each year in order to commute. Decatur is about an hour southwest of Champaign, and far closer to Saint Louis than to Chicago. For those already living here, or with career opportunities here, it’s a great chance to save some money. But Decatur is growing at a far slower rate than other cities in Illinois. For many people, however, an easy apartment search and a low cost of living are highly preferred.
The city of Chicago is a housing market of its own. While the views from North Harbor Tower are lovely, it will cost you quite a bit to live there. A studio could run you $1,731 monthly, and a three-bedroom apartment can go as high as $4,548. For many, the cost is worthwhile. Career opportunities abound and the rents in Chicago are significantly offset by the fact that commuting by car is usually not necessary.
In fact, owning a car at all is often not necessary in Chicago. Depending on your choice of vehicles, this could save you close to a thousand dollars a month on the payment, insurance, and maintenance. Don’t assume that every apartment in urban Illinois is expensive. A quick review of a popular housing site shows apartments in Chicago for well under $1,000 a month. Some of these homes are income-restricted, but many are not. In a tight market like this one, you’ll need to keep your eye on availability and be ready to act fast.
The suburbs of Chicago are another market. In cities like Buffalo Grove and Schaumburg, you can find apartments that won’t break the bank and offer more for your money than many apartments in the city. Arlington Heights, Hoffman Estates, and other suburbs offer additional options so cast your net widely. Do bear in mind that you’ll need a car if you live in the suburbs in most cases. That’s simply a truism of suburban life across the country.
There’s another sector of the housing market in Illinois that we haven’t considered, namely “large cities that aren’t Chicago.” In Champaign, for instance, you can expect to spend anywhere from $600 to $1,000 a month. But in Champaign and cities like Carbondale, you need to be aware of the significant student population. There is a right time and a wrong time to be looking for an apartment, since UIUC boasts almost 45,000 students.
If you’re moving to Illinois, part of planning and budgeting is considering where you want to be and what you want to have access to. Don’t be discouraged by the high prices that people will warn you about. A short commute outside of an urban area or good luck could be all you need to be in the thick of things and still find affordable housing. Renting in Illinois requires some legwork, but getting the home you want is worth it.
Once you’ve found the perfect home, make sure you have the perfect protection. Just call (800)892-4308 or click above to get the Illinois renters insurance you need with easy payments and coverage you can rely on. Effective Coverage insurance experts are happy to answer your questions and help you to understand what type and amount of coverage may best fit your personal situation.