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Should I bundle my auto and renters insurance policies?
Yes, if you’re a tenant and you own a car, you should consider bundling your auto and renters insurance policies. There are two major advantages to doing so:
- It’s more convenient to work with one insurance company than two separate ones
- You can save a lot of money by bundling your policies
We’ll discuss the benefits of bundling your car and renters insurance in detail below.
1. It’s more convenient to work with one insurance company
When you have multiple insurance policies (i.e. auto and renters insurance), you can simplify your life by getting them from the same company.
Bundling your policies means less paperwork. Instead of keeping track of separate monthly payments and worrying about when they’re due, you can consolidate both of your payments into one invoice.
Additionally, if you need to ask questions about your policies (or adjust or cancel them), you only have to deal with one company. This saves you a lot of time and makes your experience as a customer smoother.
2. You can save money by bundling
This is the biggest perk of bundling your insurance. Most companies will give you a discount when you buy more than one policy, and some will let you combine your insurance deductibles, which lets you save money if you have to file an insurance claim.
Bundling discounts on renters and auto insurance
Many providers offer discounts of 5% to 10% on your monthly premiums when you buy more than one policy. If they apply this discount to your auto insurance (which can cost upwards of $1,500 per year), that can amount to yearly savings of several hundred dollars.
Some companies will tell you upfront how much you’ll save if you bundle with them, whereas others won’t tell you until you’re actually ready to buy a policy. To find out what kind of renters insurance discount you can expect, call up your insurer (or a local insurance agent) and ask.
Getting one deductible for multiple policies
In addition to offering discounts on your premiums, some insurers will allow you to pay one deductible for both of your policies instead of a separate deductible for each one. (Remember, your deductible is the amount that you have to pay out of your own pocket when you file an insurance claim for lost or damaged property.)
What this means: If a hurricane damages both your car and the property you keep inside your apartment, you’ll have to file claims on both your auto and renters insurance.
If you have two deductibles of $500 (which is the average for both renters and auto insurance), your insurer will subtract $500 from both claims before they reimburse you, so you’ll have to pay a total of $1,000 out of your own pocket when you replace your damaged property. Conversely, if you have one deductible, you’ll only have to pay a total of $500.
How to bundle your renters and auto insurance policies
Bundling your renters and auto insurance is usually simple and easy. You can buy online or over the phone. Either way, the process is the same regardless of whether you’re looking to buy both policies at the same time or you already have one policy and you need to buy the other one.
Buying renters and auto insurance online
These days, most companies allow you to buy insurance online. If your insurer offers a bundling discount, they’ll almost certainly give you the option to buy both policies together when you visit their website. If you already have a policy, sign into your insurer’s online portal and look for a page where you can add a second policy.
Buying over the phone
You can also call up your insurance company or agent and tell them you’d like to bundle your renters and auto insurance together.
This is often the better option (even for the phone-shy) because insurance companies aren’t always upfront about their discounts on their websites. If you call your insurer, you can directly ask them what kind of a bundling discount you can expect instead of hoping they mention it somewhere on their website.
How to get the best auto and renters insurance bundles
Here are three tips that will help you snag the best auto and renters insurance bundle possible:
1. Look for a discount on auto insurance, not just renters insurance
Car insurance is much more expensive than renters insurance. Many auto insurance policies cost upwards of $1,5000 per year, whereas renters insurance usually costs $200–$300 per year.
This means that discounts on auto insurance go a lot farther. Getting a 10% discount on renters insurance usually means saving a couple dozen dollars per year, whereas getting a 10% discount on auto insurance can mean saving hundreds — virtually canceling out the cost of your renters insurance policy.
2. Bundle as many policies as possible
If you have other insurance policies in addition to renters and auto insurance, you might be able to get an even bigger discount if you bundle them all together.
For example, some insurers allow you to bundle your renters, auto, and life insurance to maximize your discount. Other potential bundling options include pet insurance and other types of vehicle insurance, such as motorcycle, boat, or RV insurance.
Usually, the more expensive the policies, the bigger the discount.
3. Shop around
Bundling discounts can vary substantially from insurer to insurer. To find the best deals on cheap auto and renters insurance, you might need to spend some time shopping around. Call up different insurers and ask what they offer.
You can read our renters insurance reviews to get an idea of what discounts the major renters insurance providers all offer. Note that the discounts that you’ll receive will depend on several factors, including what state you live in, so your offers might not be exactly the same as ours.
Read our reviews of:
Should I shop around if I already have an insurance provider?
Yes, even if you already have a provider, there’s no harm in shopping around and switching if you find one that offers a more competitive auto and renters insurance package. Keep in mind that your current insurer might charge a fee when you cancel your renters insurance, although it will probably be small.
To avoid paying this cancellation fee, you can wait until shortly before your policy is due to expire and tell your provider that you don’t want to renew it. Maybe sure to buy your new policy before your old one expires to avoid gaps in your coverage.
When should you start bundling your policies?
You should start bundling any time you realize that doing so will save you money.
If you have a car, you’re legally required to have auto insurance in almost every state, and although renters insurance isn’t required by law, having it is a good idea. This means that if you’re a tenant (instead of a homeowner) and you own a car, you need both policies — and if you need both policies, you can probably save money by bundling.
How to cancel your renters and auto insurance bundle
If you want to cancel one of your policies, call your insurance provider or search for a cancellation page on their website.
Keep in mind that if you cancel one of your policies but not both, you might lose your multi-policy discount and end up paying more money to your insurer, not less.
Like we mentioned earlier, you might have to pay a small cancellation fee. If you’re canceling your renters insurance policy, you should also check and make sure that doing so won’t put you in violation of your lease. Although renters insurance isn’t required by law, some landlords do require it, and if you terminate your policy without buying a new one, you could face eviction.