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Is renter's insurance affordable?

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ATLANTA -

There are more renters in homes and apartments than ever before.  But, according to national statistics, more than half don't have renter's insurance. The number one reason is that renters, who generally have tighter budgets, think they can't afford it.

Coverage for a renter is actually quite cheap because it's not covering the structure, only your belongings and that's a big difference. If you buy a cup of coffee every day, a recent survey says you spend $20 a week. According to insurance statistics, the average cost of renter's insurance in $15 a month, so it is something you can afford.

Why should you get renter's insurance? All too often in apartment fires, residents lose everything from clothing to electronics. According to insurance providers, too many renters think their landlord's insurance will cover them. It doesn't.

If you have your own insurance, it could cover not only your losses but the cost of housing while your place is getting fixed.

First, shop around for the best deal.  Bundling -- combining car and renter's insurance -- might be the best option. Also, take pictures of everything you want covered, and be generous with your calculations.  Renter's insurance is so cheap you can afford to cover it all. And, ask if you need to buy extra insurance, called a rider, for very valuable items such as a family heirloom.

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