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Texas Department of Insurance
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May 20, 2024

Does my roommate’s renters insurance cover my stuff?

Insurance advice college edition


If you lease your apartment or home with a roomie, you should each buy your own renters insurance.

Big yikes: Your roommate’s policy won’t pay for your stuff if it’s lost in a robbery or fire. Their policy covers only their belongings.

Renters insurance costs less than $20 a month.

Reasons to buy a policy:

  • It pays for your belongings – clothes, electronics, home décor, furniture – if they’re damaged or stolen from your rental home or car and while you’re traveling.
  • If you need to move out of your rental home while it’s being repaired, it might pay for rent somewhere else and food.
  • It also covers medical expenses and your legal fees if someone is hurt at your place.

If your parents have homeowners insurance, their policy will pay a certain amount to replace your belongings. But it’s likely that renters insurance would probably cover more than the limits of your parents’ homeowners policy. Check with their insurance company to get coverage amounts.

Watch our video featuring tips about college students and insurance.

Learn more

April 4, 2024

Do you need flood insurance as a renter?



If you rent your home or apartment, you may have bought renters insurance to protect your belongings from theft, fire, or damage from a burst pipe.

But there’s more to consider. Renters policies typically don’t pay for losses due to floods. But a flood insurance policy could.

If a flood causes damage or loss, your flood policy covers personal belongings such as clothing, furniture, electronics, kitchenware, and curtains.

A flood policy doesn’t cover cash, precious metals, stock certificates, and other valuable papers. A policy also doesn’t cover cars, trucks, or personal property kept in a basement.

Shop before storm season. It typically takes 30 days for a flood policy to take effect.

Ask your insurance agent if they sell flood insurance. If not, you can buy a policy from the National Flood Insurance Program. You can also call them at 800-427-4661.

Learn more

January 12, 2024

Power out, food spoiled? Your insurance might help.


If you lose power and the food in your refrigerator spoils, can your insurance help?


Some homeowners and renters policies will pay up to $500 for spoiled food if the power fails under certain circumstances. Call your agent or company to ask if your policy will pay. Sometimes there is not a deductible.

Take pictures or keep a list of the food that spoiled.

And clean any food spoilage to prevent damage to your refrigerator.

Have other insurance questions? Call the TDI Help Line, 800-252-3439, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays.

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January 17, 2023

Texas law encourages renters to buy flood coverage


A Texas law (House Bill 531) emphasizes that renters insurance doesn’t pay for flood damage.

Renters insurance, available for about $20 a month, pays to repair or replace the things you own if they’re damaged by fire, smoke, theft or vandalism, and certain kinds of water damage.

But most renters policies don’t pay for losses caused by floods.

Renters worried about flooding should consider buying a separate flood policy. Ask your agent if they sell flood insurance. If not, you can buy a policy from the National Flood Insurance Program. You can also call them at 800-427-4661.

Landlords are now required to:

  • Tell potential renters if they know the dwelling is in a 100-year flood plain.
  • Tell potential renters if they know the dwelling had flood damage at least once in the previous five years.
  • Encourage renters to buy flood insurance.

Even if your home isn’t in a flood plain, you might want to consider a policy. Flooding can happen anywhere at any time. Poor drainage systems, broken water mains, neighborhood construction, and summer storms can result in flooding.

Learn more

August 4, 2022

Safety and savings tips when you go back to college


Many college students live off campus.

Freedom, right?

But you need to watch out for yourself.

Some money-saving and safety tips:

  • Call your health plan to find nearby urgent care centers that are in your plan’s network. This could save you money when you need care.
  • Look for the fire alarms and exits in your apartment complex. Some alarms sound a bell. Others have a voice feature telling you where to go if there’s a fire.
  • Consider renters insurance. At less than $200 a year, a renters policy can pay to replace your things after a fire or other disaster. It might also pay for you to live somewhere else while repairs are being made.
  • Let your auto insurance agent know that you’re back at school. This might save you money.

Hear more expert advice about going back to school in the latest Texas Insurance Podcast.

View podcast Q&A: How college students can stay healthy, safe, and protect their stuff

Learn more

June 17, 2021

Average cost of renters policy? $15 a month


If you rent an apartment or house, it’s a good idea to have renters insurance. It pays to replace your personal belongings if they’re stolen or damaged by a fire, storm, or burst pipe.

We talked to a Houston-area real estate agent about the importance of having renters insurance.

Christy Rodriguez says renters should weigh the cost of renters insurance (about $15 a month) to the cost of relocating and replacing their belongings if their rental is damaged.

Renters insurance also pay for a hotel and food if you need to move out while your rental is being repaired. It also pays if someone is hurt in your home, and we all have that one friend…

Learn more about renters insurance.

June 2, 2021

Starting your financial future together


Getting married soon? You’re not the only happy couple! Wedding planners report being booked through the year as couples reschedule weddings postponed due to the pandemic. We can’t help you find a caterer, but we do have an insurance checklist to get you off to a good financial start.

Renters insurance: The average renters policy in Texas costs about $20 a month. That’s a great way to protect those nice wedding gifts. It will pay to replace items damaged by a burst pipe or other cause. It will also cover personal items stolen from your home or car.

Auto policies: Combining your auto policies may save you money. Most insurance companies offer a discount if you have more than one vehicle, and rates are usually lower if you’re married.

Health coverage: You have several options for health coverage. If both of you have coverage through work, compare the policies. One may have better benefits, a lower deductible, or a lower cost to add a dependent. And check to see if there’s a deadline to add a spouse.

Life insurance: As your situation changes and your family grows, you may need life insurance. Consider how much income would need to be replaced to help with childcare, your mortgage, and other debts.

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