Renters insurance is a common solution for renters looking for protection from the many unpredictable situations that come along with leasing a home or apartment. It’s an affordable solution providing renters peace of mind that their personal belongings will be safe if any damage occurs.
One of the most common risks that can damage your belongings is bed bugs. These pests can infest your home, damage your possessions, and cause itchy welts on your body. They’re not easy to get rid of and can result in significant financial strain from time taken off work, medical bills, replacement of furniture, and more. In addition to that, an extermination can cost you hundreds of dollars.
So, if renters insurance protects renters from damages to their leased home, are bed bugs included in this coverage? Here we’ll discuss exactly what renters’ insurance covers and if these pesky bugs are included in these policies.
What is Renters Insurance?
Renters insurance is a policy designed to protect the renter as opposed to the landlord. Landlords will typically have homeowners’ insurance that will protect the building itself, but not your personal property within the home. This typically does not protect against damage to your personal belongings or provide protection if someone is injured on your property.
Renters insurance provides coverage for the renters’ personal possessions in the case of damage such as a flood, fire, or other unpredictable perils. Possessions and situations covered will vary from policy to policy. Renters insurance can save you from financial stress in an unfortunate time for only about one to two hundred dollars a year. It’s an important, but not mandatory investment for renters.
Renters insurance is not required by law. Many landlords do recommend the purchase of renters’ insurance and may even include it as a mandatory requirement in the lease. To see if you, as a renter, are required to purchase a renter’s insurance policy, be sure to check your lease agreement.
What is Covered by Renters Insurance?
As stated, renters’ insurance generally covers a lessee’s personal belongings and personal liability if someone gets injured on your property. Personal liability coverage within a renters’ insurance policy will cover the medical bills of the injured person, therefore, saving you from paying thousands in medical fees.
Renters insurance may also cover a temporary living expense if damage in your home or apartment has caused an uninhabitable living situation. This may cover hotel expenses, cost of food, and more.
As for damage to your property, renters’ insurance will generally cover damages from:
- Fires and smoke
- Storms such as hail, wet snow, sleet, wind, and lightning
- Flooding or plumbing overflow
- Electrical failures and short-circuit damage
- Volcanic eruptions
Although this is an extensive list of scenarios, there is no mention of bed bugs. That’s because bed bugs and the damage they can cause on a home are not typically covered by renters’ insurance. This is unfortunate considering bed bugs can create thousands of dollars of damage, from ruined furniture to medical bills.
Renters insurance policies generally do not cover bed bugs or bed bug damage because they are not considered an uncontrollable peril. These pests are instead considered to be an upkeep concern. Therefore, the responsibility of bed bugs and preventing an infestation falls on the landlord or lessee. Bed bugs and other pests are usually considered a maintenance concern.
Renters insurance typically states that it is the renter’s responsibility to mitigate damage posed by pests and vermin. Instead of an unpredictable scenario that insurance covers usually, bed bugs are including in the regular maintenance a renter must do to control risks in the home.
Ultimately, you must defer to the language of a particular policy of insurance to verify coverages and responsibilities.
Are Landlords Liable for Bed Bugs?
The responsibility of bed bugs either falls on the landlord or the renter. Whoever is held responsible will most likely have to pay extermination fees, damages, and more.
Whatever party is responsible for bed bugs varies by location and local laws. Generally speaking, if you live in a multi-unit facility, such as an apartment complex, your landlord will be responsible for the extermination and costs associated with bed bugs. If you are renting a single-unit home, typically, the renter will be held accountable for the infestation. This also depends greatly on whether or not the infestation was present prior to moving in.
To find out if you are liable for a bed bug infestation, consider reaching out to a qualified bed bug attorney or landlord tenant attorney in your area.
How Bed Bug Injury Law Can Help
Bed Bug Injury Law is dedicated to helping renters navigate through the confusing process of an infestation on a rented property. Bed bug infestations are an extremely stressful situation, and with the added stress of locating who is responsible for the infestation, renters can become overwhelmed.
Bed Bug Injury Law may be able to help renters file claims against negligent landlords that have caused or failed to eliminate bed bug infestations. Landlords should be held responsible for negligent actions that can lead to significant damage in your current home. If you are a renter, be sure to contact a bed bug attorney if:
- Your landlord is not taking proper cleanliness precautions to mitigate pests
- Your landlord knew of a bed bug infestation and did not disclose it to you
- Your landlord refused to take appropriate actions once a bed bug infestation was confirmed
- Your landlord refused to pay for extermination when the infestation was caused by negligence
If you suspect a bed bug infestation on your rented property, be sure to capture photo evidence of any adult bed bugs, bed bug eggs, bed bug waste, and bed bug bites. Keep track of any financial damages such as time taken off work, medical bills, damaged furniture, and extermination costs. These items are crucial to forming a strong case.
Bed Bug Injury Law may be able to assess your situation to see if you have a case. If you have a strong case of landlord negligence, we may be able to help you pursue legal action to cover damages, medical bills, and more. For a professional assessment of your case, reach out to Bed Bug Injury Law today!
Disclaimer: The information provided on this website is for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. This firm handles claims nationwide on a pre-litigation basis. Some attorneys are not licensed to practice in certain jurisdictions. Although most bed bug cases resolve without a lawsuit, should one need be filed in a jurisdiction the firm is not authorized to practice, our lawyers work with local counsel upon the execution of a new agreement.