It's just human nature: when your belongings are out of sight in a storage unit, they are out of mind. This is one of the biggest benefits to renting storage, but it can also come back to bite you if you aren't careful. Valuables placed into storage should be insured, not forgotten. Your possessions may be covered by your homeowner's or renter's insurance policy, but they may not, and it will be your responsibility to make sure.
Virtually all self storage facilities provide insurance that covers any damage to their building, but this does not necessarily cover damage to your items. Make sure you ask about optional tenant insurance when you rent a storage unit. This will be available for a small fee that will be added to your rental fee for valuable peace of mind.
Why You Should Get Insurance
In most cases, you can get $2,000 to $4,000 in coverage for your belongings in self storage for a fee of around $9 per month, and you can choose additional insurance if you will be storing valuables. This is a small additional price to pay if you are storing family heirlooms, furniture or other items that would be difficult to replace. Most tenant insurance policies cover damage caused by accidents like water, theft and fire damage, which are the most likely causes of damage to your belongings, and you can request additional flood insurance.
If you need to file a claim, you will do so through your tenant's insurance company, not your own policy that covers your belongings at home. This is a big advantage because it means claims will not cause a cancellation of your personal or business policies or affect the price you pay for homeowner's insurance or renter's insurance at home.
If your storage facility is located far from home, you can also request coverage for belongings in transit within a fifty mile radius. This is very important if you are going to hire a moving company to transport your belongings to self storage or to your home.
Business owners can also benefit from insurance. If you store business supplies, inventory or equipment in a self storage facility, ask yourself how your business would fare if you were to lose these items? Purchasing insurance can be a very wise investment to keep your business running.
The items and situations covered will depend on your specific policy, but almost everything that can be stored in a self storage unit can be covered, except for vehicles, which require auto insurance. Be sure you read through your policy to make sure everything will be covered. You can get coverage against fire, theft and water damage, as well as flood damage.
Make sure you calculate the value of items you place into storage and know what your items are worth. Keep an inventory and buy the right amount of insurance for your own peace of mind.