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Are you one-half of an unmarried couple who live together? If so, you’re a part of a rapidly growing segment of the US population. A recent report published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revealed that, by the age of 30, three out of four women in the US will have cohabitated with an unmarried partner.

Living together can be fun and exciting, but if you don’t plan properly it can also be frustrating and messy. One way to help ensure smooth sailing – even when unexpected events occur, like a fire or a robbery – is to obtain adequate insurance coverage. Here are four tips to help you and your partner make sure you’ve got the coverage you need.

Your landlord’s insurance doesn’t cover you.

By law, your landlord is required to have an insurance policy that covers the building you live in. That policy does not, however, cover any of your personal property. You need a separate Lawrenceville renters insurance policy that covers your belongings and protects you in the event that your things are damaged or stolen.

Your partner’s insurance doesn’t cover you, either.

Most cohabitating couples want to save money by combining as many accounts (and their associated bills) as possible. With the economy still in a sluggish state, it’s a reasonable desire. Standard renter’s insurance, however, only covers a single individual and his or her belongings. If your partner has renter’s insurance but you don’t, you aren’t covered. You need your own policy to safeguard your possessions.

If your partner owns the home you’re living in, she already has a homeowner’s insurance policy that covers the home and her possessions. That policy cannot, however, be extended to you unless you marry her. Until then, you need a separate renter’s insurance policy to cover your belongings.

Joint renter’s insurance policies can be more trouble than they’re worth.

Some insurance carriers offer joint insurance policies. These can be helpful, but they’re also far more difficult to terminate or change if your relationship ends. If you need to make changes to a joint policy, you and your significant other must both agree to those changes in writing. If the two of you break up, and your partner moves out but won’t agree to be taken off the joint policy, you may be financially responsible for extra coverage that you no longer need. Consider a joint policy very carefully before jumping in with both feet.

Covering your joint possessions requires a little extra effort.

It’s not uncommon for cohabitating couples to make large joint purchases such as appliances, furniture, or electronics. Covering these items, however, can be complicated. It’s possible for each of you to claim a certain amount of ownership over a particular item, but you’ll each need to provide proof of your financial contribution (such as a receipt or cancelled check) to your insurer.

Obtaining renter’s insurance is easy and often surprisingly affordable. If you’re cohabitating with a partner, take some time to sit down and discuss your insurance coverage. The few moments it takes to make sure you’re both adequately covered right now can save you from disappointment and confusion in the event that you need to file a claim in the future.

Call Guardian Insurance today at (770) 277-4779 for all of your renters insurance needs.

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