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How many Canadian renters lack tenant insurance?


January 11, 2022   by Alyssa DiSabatino


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Correction: This story has been changed to reflect new information. The survey had 491 respondents rather than 1624, and the percentages of renters with insurance was 65% in Quebec, vs. 46% in the rest of Canada, rather than 48% vs. 28% as previously reported. Canadian Underwriter regrets the error.

If your client is a renter, how would they go about financially protecting their belongings in case of theft or damage? Hopefully they answer with tenant insurance, but unfortunately, many Canadians answer differently. 

Almost half of Canadian renters do not have tenant insurance, finds a survey conducted by TD Insurance. 

Conducted nationally between August 24-26, TD’s 2021 Tenant Insurance Survey found that, out of the 491 Canadians who were surveyed, 41% were without tenant insurance. 

One may think that renting a property should be followed up by purchasing tenant insurance. But, whether it’s due to cost, feeling as if they don’t have much to insure, or incorrectly believing they have coverage under their landlord or roommate’s policy, many Canadians are forgoing tenant insurance and, in doing so, putting themselves at financial risk. 


While landlords have property insurance for the building or house itself, this doesn’t include coverage for the contents of a tenant’s rental unit, and  in case of common risks such as theft, fire or water damage  many tenants do not have sufficient protection for their belongings.  

What’s more is 43% of survey respondents named personal electronics, such as mobile phones, cameras, televisions and laptops as the most valued possessions they would want to protect against loss or damage. 

Furniture came next at 22%, with jewelry, clothing and recreational equipment at 8%, 5%, and 2%, respectively.  

Tenant insurance is not a legal requirement for renters in Canada. However, some landlords make it a condition in their rental agreement. In fact, 49% of survey respondents say their landlord requires them to have tenant insurance. 

Without tenant insurance, renters could be held responsible for damage to the unit and could face steep repair expenses, on top of the costs for replacing personal belongings.  

This is important because 51% of survey respondents noted they would have trouble replacing their belongings without insurance. Only about 20% stated they could replace all or most of their personal property without the help of a tenant insurance policy. 

In an email statement to Canadian Underwriter, TD Insurance notes that the survey sample “was reflective of the Canadian population and renter audience.” 

“Overall, the findings show that Canadians from coast-to-coast require some education when it comes to the benefits of tenant insurance,” the email statement reads. “However, there were some interesting regional differences. For example, Quebecers are significantly more likely to be among the 51% of Canadian renters who say that have tenant insurance (65% QC, vs. 46% rest of Canada) and more likely to be able to name at least one event covered by insurance (84% vs. avg. of 75% for rest of Canada).

“Protecting personal property that often can be expensive to repair or replace makes sense for homeowners and renters alike,” Craig Richardson, vice president of claims with TD Insurance, says in a news release. “Insuring a home isn’t just for homeowners. It’s a savvy way for renters to protect their valued belongings and help cover potentially expensive replacement or repair costs when an accidental or unexpected loss happens.”

 

Feature image by iStock.com/humanmade