If you don’t have thousands of dollars in the bank to cover liability claims and replacements to damaged belongings, a renters insurance policy in New Jersey can help. For an average cost of $14 per month, you can get personal liability, medical payments to others, personal property, and loss of use coverage.
Since finding the best renters insurance company for your budget and home will require some research, the This Old House Review team is here to help with this guide on New Jersey renters insurance.
4 Best Renters Insurance Companies in New Jersey
Here are the four best renters insurance companies in New Jersey based on coverage, pricing, customer service, discounts, endorsements, and more:
- Lemonade: Easiest Sign-Up
- Liberty Mutual: Best Discounts
- American Family: Most Comprehensive Coverage
- Nationwide: Best Standard Policy
- J.D. Power Rating: 853/1,000
- A.M. Best Rating: N/A
Lemonade offers affordable renters insurance coverage in New Jersey with policies starting as low as $5 per month. Signing up is easier than ever using Lemonade’s mobile app. You can have a renters insurance policy in less than two minutes. If you ever find yourself needing to file a renters insurance claim, the mobile app comes in strong once again taking only minutes to submit your claim and receive payment.
Benefits of Lemonade Renters Insurance
✔ Policies start at $5 per month
✔ Giveback program donates unused policy money to charities
✔ Signing up for a policy takes less than 2 minutes with the Lemonade app
Learn More: Lemonade Renters Insurance Review
Liberty Mutual has the most industry experience out of the providers in this review, with over 100 years in the business, but that isn’t the only notable feature about the company. Liberty Mutual has liability coverage of up to $1 million, 24/7 customer service for claims, and five customer discounts.
Benefits of Liberty Mutual Renters Insurance
✔ Available in all 50 states
✔ Premiums as low as $5 per month
✔ Actual cash value and replacement cash value personal property policies, which allow you to choose between replacing items based on their current value or based on their new value
Learn More: Liberty Mutual Renters Insurance Review
American Family offers the best customer service out of the insurance providers in this review. If you need to file a liability, personal property, medical payments to others, or loss of use claim, you can talk to a customer service representative at any hour of the day, any day of the week. You also have access to a customer login and mobile app for self-service.
Benefits of American Family Renters Insurance
✔ 24/7 customer service for all policy, claims, sales, and general questions
✔ Unique travel protection add-on that offers benefits, like trip cancellation and global medical insurance
✔ Five discounts, including ones for using auto pay and for being related to another American Family customer
Learn More: American Family Renters Insurance Review
Nationwide offers both comprehensive and customizable coverage. In addition to liability, loss of use, medical payments, and personal property coverage, customers can get ordinance or law coverage, building additions and alterations, and credit card protection with every policy.
Benefits of Nationwide Renters Insurance
✔ Over 90 years of experience
✔ A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau (BBB)
✔ Endorsements not offered by the other providers, like refrigerated property and limited water backup
Learn More: Nationwide Renters Insurance Review
New Jersey Renters Insurance Coverage
New Jersey policies have four areas of coverage and optional add-ons called endorsements:
- Liability: If your pipe bursts and damages your neighbor’s belongings or if your dog bites your neighbor, this part of your policy will replace their belongings or pay their medical bills. Most New Jersey property managers will require this type of coverage so that they don’t have to take on the cost themselves.
- Personal property: This protects the personal belongings in your apartment that you own. Take inventory of your items before signing up for a policy so you get enough coverage to protect all of your belongings.
- Loss of use: When a fire or another event damages your rental enough that you have to temporarily live elsewhere during repairs, your insurance will cover those living expenses.
- Medical payments to others: When a guest injures themselves in your home, your policy will cover a certain amount of their medical bills.
- Endorsements: If you want extra protection for items or events that aren’t covered in your policy, you can check with your provider about additional coverage options. Most companies will offer jewelry or scheduled personal property, identity theft, and earthquake coverage.
How Much Does a Renters Insurance Policy Cost in New Jersey?
The average cost of renters insurance policies in New Jersey in 2019 was $56 per year, or $13 per month, according to the Insurance Information Institute (III). This is lower than the national average of $14.50 per month.
Factors to Consider Before Buying Renters Insurance
As you search for a policy to protect your home, keep these factors in mind:
- Named-peril vs. all-risk policies: Renters insurance policies are either named-peril or all-risk. Named-peril only covers the events listed, while all-risk policies cover all events except the ones mentioned as exclusions. Regardless of which policy you choose, make sure you know what is and isn’t covered before purchasing from a provider.
- Climate: New Jersey can experience cold winters with several feet of snow. This extreme weather can cause frozen pipes and other damage from the weight of snow. Before buying a policy, make sure you have coverage for these events so that you don’t have to pay out of pocket for repairs.
- Auto insurance provider: You may be able to get a discount for buying renters insurance through the same company that provides your auto insurance.
- Valuable items: The personal property portion of your policy likely won’t cover valuable items, like jewelry and antiques. If you own a variety of those items, you may want to look into an endorsement for them.
How New Jersey Renters Insurance Works
When an event that’s listed as covered on your policy damages your belongings, makes your home inhabitable, causes damage to your neighbor or their belongings, or injures your guest, you can file a claim.
Most companies have a customer portal to file the claim yourself or a phone number to file a claim with a customer service representative. Some companies will also have a mobile app or a chat function on their website.
Your provider will cover the cost of the event as long as it doesn’t exceed the amount of coverage you purchased. If the damage exceeds the amount of coverage in your policy, you’ll have to pay the remaining amount.
Events Renters Insurance in New Jersey Covers
Here’s a list of covered losses found in most New Jersey renters insurance policies:
- Fire and lightning
- Windstorm and hail
- Theft and vandalism
- Damage by vehicle
- Smoke damage
- Falling objects
- Weight of snow, ice, and sleet
- Water damage not caused by flooding
Lemonade, Liberty Mutual, American Family, and Nationwide offer the most comprehensive renters insurance in New Jersey, offering several add-on and discount options.
Before picking a provider, get renters insurance quotes from all three so that you can compare coverage and pricing:
FAQs About Renters Insurance in New Jersey
Our Rating Methodology
The This Old House Reviews Team is committed to providing comprehensive and unbiased reviews to our readers. This means earning your trust through transparency and having the data to back up our ratings and recommendations.
With that in mind, we created an objective rating system to score each home insurance company. Here’s what that review process looked like:
- We analyze the information on each company’s website. This allows us to determine what products and services are offered by each home insurance provider.
- We get a sample quote from the companies by either talking to a sales representative or by using the online quote tool. This tells us what a policy looks like and costs.
- We test customer service by talking to a company representative, finding out their hours of operation, and determining what technological features are available for customers.
- We update all of this information on a continuous basis, storing it in a proprietary database that allows us to compare dozens of home insurance companies against each other.
With this data, we created a rating methodology to score each home insurance company. Our rating system is a weighted, 100-point scale based on the following factors:
- Coverage (30): We rated home insurance companies higher if they offered the six main types of homeowner protection—dwelling, other structures, personal property, loss of use, liability, and medical payments to others coverage.
- State availability (7.5): Companies scored higher if they covered more states than their competitors.
- Customer service (15): This factor is based on our communications with the company representatives, as well as the companies’ claims and quotes processes, availability throughout the week, and customer service information found on their websites.
- Technology (12.5): Technology can increase the efficiency of filing and tracking home insurance claims. Companies scored higher if they had technology options like mobile apps and online chat functions.
- Reputation (20): We gauged trustworthiness based on years of experience and Better Business Bureau ratings.
- Additional benefits (15): Companies that offered optional features, like discounts and endorsements, scored higher than competitors that didn’t.
The This Old House Reviews Team has a full-time researcher who collects and regularly updates data points from every company to help us compare them on key factors such as coverage, service, and dependability.
To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at firstname.lastname@example.org.