If you live in a rental home or apartment, renters insurance helps prevent you from paying out-of-pocket expenses for damaged belongings or liability claims. To help protect you from unexpected disasters, Allstate, State Farm, and Farmers all offer affordable and comprehensive renters insurance coverage to Chicago residents.
To help Chicago renters choose the best renters insurance company, the This Old House Reviews Team described the plans, coverage details, and pricing of the top three providers in the city.
Best Renters Insurance Companies in Chicago
When deciding the best renters insurance coverage for Chicago residents, our team looked at multiple factors, including customer service, plan options, discounts, and more.
With an online tool that helps you calculate the value of your belongings, Allstate provides the tools necessary to create a customized policy that fits you and your home’s needs. Allstate offers standard personal property, loss of use, medical payments to others, and liability coverage, with five optional coverages available for purchase.
Take a look at the benefits and drawbacks of an Allstate renters insurance policy:
Allstate Pros & Cons
|Offers five additional coverage options||Offers only three deductible options|
|Personal property coverage can be an actual cash value (ACV) or replacement cash value (RCV) policy||Coverage limits vary by state|
|No limit on loss of use coverage|
To help its customers save money, Allstate offers five renters insurance discounts:
- Multi-policy discount—If you purchase renters and car insurance policies from Allstate, you can qualify for the multi-policy discount.
- Safe home discount—Certain safety features in your rental like smoke alarms or security systems can qualify you for this discount.
- Easy pay plan—Signing up for automatic payment saves you 5% on your policy.
- 55 and retired discount—If you’re at least 55 years old and retired, you can save 25% on your policy.
- Claim-free discount—Not filing a renters insurance claim can save you up to 20% on your policy, and increases each year you stay claims free.
2. State Farm
State Farm offers some of the most extensive renters insurance coverage, with no caps on personal property or loss of use coverage. If you’re looking for coverage beyond personal property, liability, loss of use, and medical payments to others, State Farm offers eight additional coverage options that you can purchase.
Compare the advantages and disadvantages of a State Farm policy:
Statefarm Pros & Cons
|No limit on personal property and loss of use coverage||Offers only three deductible options|
|Provides eight additional coverage options||Only provides two discounts to customers|
|Offers premiums that are below or in line with the national average of $15 per month|
State Farm is specific in explaining the events that are covered in each renters insurance plan. This provider covers losses that fall into the following three categories:
- Accidents—Coverage includes impacts from vehicles, falling objects, fire, smoke, and water damage from appliances or plumbing.
- Weather impacts—Weather impacts include damage caused by the weight of snow or ice, lightning, windstorms, hail, and water damage from frozen plumbing.
- Malicious mischief—This includes coverage from theft, vandalism, riots, and civil commotion.
As an experienced renters insurance agency with over 90 years of experience, Farmers provides customers low deductible options and no limit on personal property coverage. The company simplifies the process of receiving a renters insurance quote, allowing customers to receive their quotes online by filling out personal and property information.
Here are the advantages and disadvantages of a Farmers renters insurance policy:
Farmers Pros & Cons
|Provides a 24/7 claims service||Not available in all 50 states|
|Has over 90 years of industry experience||Provides only one add-on coverage option|
|Offers six deductible options|
Although Farmers only provides one add-on coverage option, the company offers separate insurance policies that can supplement your renters insurance. The two policies include:
- Pet insurance—This helps cover the cost associated with your pet’s surgery or physical rehabilitation.
- Umbrella liability insurance—This coverage offers you an extra layer of protection that helps cover the costs of at-fault wrecks.
Chicago Renters Insurance Coverage
Like many cities, renters insurance policies in the Windy City contain liability, medical payments to others, personal property, and loss of use coverage. In addition, many providers offer optional coverage, or endorsements.
Here’s what each type of coverage entails:
- Liability—This coverage protects you if you inflict injury or damage to a neighbor or their property. Landlords typically require $100,000 worth of liability coverage.
- Personal property—Personal property coverage helps cover the expense of unexpected damage to your personal belongings.
- Medical payments to others—If someone is injured in your home, this coverage helps pay their medical bills.
- Loss of use—If you have to evacuate your home due to an unexpected event, loss of use coverage pays for additional living expenses, like the cost of food or a hotel room.
- Endorsements—Endorsements are optional coverages offered by a provider. Typical endorsements include earthquake and jewelry coverage.
How Much Does a Renters Insurance Policy Cost in Chicago?
In 2017, the average cost of renters insurance in Illinois was about $13.91 per month, according to the Insurance Information Institute. That was below the national average of $15 per month.
Factors to Consider Before Buying Renters Insurance
Before selecting a renters insurance plan, consider the following factors:
- RCV vs. ACV policies—These policies relate to personal property coverage. Replacement cost value (RCV) policies cover items based on their value at the time of purchase. Actual cost value (ACV) policies cover items based on their current value, which factors in depreciation over time. Some plans allow you to choose between RCV and ACV personal property coverage, while others are preselected.
- Named peril vs all risk policies—Named peril policies cover damages specifically described in your policy, while all risk policies cover all damages except the ones listed as exclusions in your policy.
- Discounts—Common discounts include bundling renters and auto insurance, installing home safety equipment in the home, and being claims-free.
Compare Renters Insurance Coverage Options
If you’re not sure which renters insurance policy is best for you, compare the providers below.
Compare Renters Insurance Companies
|Personal property coverage limits||$25,000–$150,000||No limit||No limit|
|Liability coverage limits||$100,000, $200,000, $300,000, or $500,000||$100,000, $300,000, $400,000, $500,000, $750,000, or $1,000,000||$100,000, $200,000, $300,000, or $500,000|
|ACV or RCV||ACV or RCV||ACV or RCV||ACV or RCV|
|Monthly price||About $16||About $12||Varies|
|Unique add-ons||Scheduled personal property, uninsured/underinsured motorist||Waterbed, computer||Identity shield|
|Customer service||24/7||Hours vary by department||Monday through Friday 7 am–11 pm and Saturday through Sunday 8 am–8 pm|
We recommend Allstate, State Farm, and Farmers renters insurance for renters in Chicago who want comprehensive coverage at an affordable rate. Before selecting a policy, we encourage you to get renters insurance quotes from all three companies to help you compare costs and coverage details.
Frequently Asked Questions About Renters Insurance in Chicago
Is renters insurance required in Chicago?
No. There’s no ordinance or state law requiring Chicago renters to obtain renters insurance. However, it’s legal for landlords to require renters insurance for tenants moving into their units.
What does renters insurance usually cover?
Typically, renters insurance covers liability, personal property, medical payments to others, and loss of use coverage. Protections under these coverages include the cost of replacing damaged belongings, liability claims, and payment for an injured guest’s medical bills.
How much does renters insurance cost in Chicago?
Illinois renters insurance costs around $13.91 per month. However, the overall cost of your renters insurance policy will depend on your residence type, rental location, and number of pets, among other factors.
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