Table of Contents
- How much does renters insurance cost in Boston?
- Average price of renters insurance in Boston
- The cheapest renters insurance in Boston: GEICO
- The best renters insurance in Boston: Allstate
- Other Boston renters insurance providers you should consider
- How to learn more about renters insurance providers in Boston
- What else do you need to know about renters insurance in Boston, MA?
- How we gathered our data on renters insurance prices for Boston
How much does renters insurance cost in Boston?
The cost of renters insurance in Boston ranges from $12.42 to $32.92 per month. The city’s average price is around $23.68 per month, which is slightly more expensive than the national average of approximately $20.00 per month.
The cheapest renters insurance in Boston comes courtesy of GEICO at only $12.42 per month. Midvale and Progressive tie for the most expensive renters insurance providers with policies costing $32.92 per month.
The relatively high renters insurance rates in Boston are the result of several factors:
- High crime rate: Boston has relatively high rates of robbery and burglary. Because renters insurance covers theft and vandalism, insurers charge you more if you live in an area with a high risk of property crime.
- Freezing winters: The temperature during Boston’s frigid winters regularly dips below zero. If you have an older rental, then this means a high risk of frozen pipes. Consequently, your rates will be higher because renters insurance covers water damage from frozen and burst pipes. It also covers your hotel stay while your apartment is being repaired. (This is known as loss-of-use coverage in renters insurance.)
- High cost of living: Boston has a higher cost of living than any other city in Massachusetts. In addition to higher housing and transportation costs, this also means higher renters insurance costs.
In addition to these location-related factors, several personal factors can also affect your renters insurance premium:
- Your claims and payment history: If you’ve filed a lot of insurance claims in the past, you might be flagged as a high-risk customer. The same is true if you have a track record of missing insurance payments or paying late, which could disqualify you from coverage altogether.
- Your chosen coverage and deductible: Your premium will be higher if you opt for a higher amount of personal property coverage or add riders or endorsements to your renters insurance policy. You’ll also pay more each month if you choose a low renters insurance deductible (the money you have to pay out of pocket before your insurer will cover your losses).
In the following sections, we’ll give you a breakdown of the prices offered by Boston’s major renters insurance companies and show you where to go to get the cheapest policies.
Average price of renters insurance in Boston
The table below shows the average cost of renters insurance in Boston per month and year for all of the major insurance providers in the city, as well as how their prices compare to the average.
|Insurer||Price (monthly)||Price (yearly)||Difference from average|
The cheapest renters insurance in Boston: GEICO
GEICO offers the cheapest renters insurance in Boston by a wide margin, with rates as low as $12.42 per month.
Does that mean that GEICO is the best renters insurance provider in Boston? To find out, let’s look at some of GEICO’s major pros and cons.
Advantages of GEICO’s renters insurance in Boston, MA
- Potential bed bug coverage with Assurant: GEICO sells renters insurance for their partner companies. They often sell policies for Assurant, who (unlike most renters insurance providers) offers coverage for bed bugs.
- Discounts if you already have their auto insurance: Like most other companies, GEICO offers a bundling discount for buying both renters and auto insurance, which means you could save money if you already have their auto insurance. However, this discount varies by location, so you’ll need to speak with a representative to confirm your eligibility.
Disadvantages of GEICO’s renters insurance in Boston, MA
GEICO has one major disadvantage: they don’t actually provide renters insurance.
Confused? Here’s the deal: when you purchase renters insurance through GEICO, another company will actually provide it. Essentially, GEICO is just a reseller for other companies’ renters insurance.
While that’s not always a disadvantage, we included it on our list of cons because GEICO frequently sells renters insurance from Assurant.
Why does that matter? Assurant has low ratings on the Better Business Bureau’s website (1.03 out of 5 stars) and has a reputation for subpar customer service and a claims handling process that’ll give you a headache. In addition, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) reported that it received 21 complaints about Assurant in 2020, which is a very high number given their small share of the renters insurance market.
Should you get GEICO renters insurance in Boston?
It’s hard for us to recommend GEICO’s renters insurance in the Boston area. As we just said, that’s because they often sell policies from Assurant, a company that’s known for poor customer service. (If it wasn’t clear, when you buy a renters insurance policy from GEICO, you don’t get to choose which insurer you’ll get.)
However, we still recommend giving them a call. In addition to Assurant, GEICO partners with Homesite, Travelers, Stillwater, and Lemonade, all of which have respectable NAIC and BBB ratings. If you rent in the Boston area, there’s no guarantee GEICO will offer you one of their policies, but it never hurts to investigate.
The best renters insurance in Boston: Allstate
Allstate doesn’t provide the cheapest renters insurance in Boston, but they don’t provide the most expensive, either. They also offer several features that Bostonites may find particularly useful.
Pros of Allstate’s renters insurance in Boston, MA
- Allstate offers flood insurance: Allstate partners with the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) to sell flood insurance policies. While buying flood insurance will raise your premiums, it’s worth the cost. Melting snow can easily cause Boston’s older buildings to flood, and the city’s high tide flood levels are expected to increase over the next few decades.
- Allstate offers several useful add-ons: As mentioned, Boston has a high crime rate. Allstate has a couple of optional extras (known as renters insurance riders) that can help. For instance, you can buy something known as a scheduled property rider to get more coverage for jewelry and other valuable items. Allstate also offers an identity theft rider to protect you if fraudsters get ahold of your credit card info.
Cons of Allstate renters insurance in Boston, MA
Every insurance company has its disadvantages, and Allstate is no exception:
- Their website makes it hard to get a reliable quote: Allstate’s website isn’t very reliable. If you use it to shop, you might not end up with the policy you thought you were buying. To avoid confusion, we recommend taking advantage of Allstate’s large network of agents and purchasing a policy over the phone.
- Allstate has several customer complaints: We’ve encountered several complaints from customers who said that it wasn’t easy to file a renters insurance claim with Allstate. They also said that Allstate was slow to cancel their policies. However, almost every large insurer has received a few complaints like this, so this doesn’t necessarily indicate a problem with Allstate.
Overall, while Allstate’s coverage is fairly standard, we found that they offered a slightly better deal in the Boston area than most of their competitors. The adverse reports we saw weren’t bad enough to be deal-breakers.
Still, everyone’s circumstances are different, so be sure to do your homework before purchasing a policy to make sure they’re right for you.
Other Boston renters insurance providers you should consider
Other insurers in Boston might be a better fit for your specific needs. You should consider another provider if you:
- Consider yourself tech-savvy
- Graduated from (or teach at) Boston University
- Come from a military background
Best Boston renters insurance for tech-savvy renters: Lemonade
Lemonade is an excellent option for renters who prefer to manage their renters insurance online. They handle all policy applications and renters insurance claims through their website and app.
They make it very easy to get a quote and file renters insurance claims online, without talking to anybody on the phone. The downside is that if you file a complicated claim that their app’s AI can’t process on its own, it can be hard to get in touch with a customer service rep to inquire about your claim’s status.
Best Boston renters insurance for Boston University alumni: Liberty Mutual
Liberty Mutual is one of the cheaper renters insurance providers in Boston, and on top of their already-low base rates, they offer a lot of discounts on renters insurance — including a discount for alumni and employees of Boston University (BU).
Liberty Mutual also offers discounts for:
- Being a retired, active, or reserve military member
- Switching to them from another provider
- Purchasing your policy online
- Receiving your policy documentation digitally
- Not filing any insurance claims for five or more years
- Setting up autopay through your bank
- Bundling your renters and auto insurance policies
- Installing safety equipment, including home security systems, deadbolts, fire sprinklers, fire alarms, and smart home security devices
Best Boston renters insurance for military servicemembers and veterans: USAA
USAA is one of the best renters insurance providers in the country (in every city, not just Boston). Their prices are reasonable, they have a reputation for fairly processing their customers’ claims, and their standard policies provide both flood coverage and earthquake coverage — which makes them unique among renters insurance companies.
The catch (and of course there’s a catch) is that they don’t insure everyone. They only make their policies available to current military servicemembers, veterans, and the spouses and children of other USAA members. They don’t make exceptions, so if you’re not eligible for one of their policies, you’ll have to look into another provider, such as Allstate, Liberty Mutual, or State Farm.
How to learn more about renters insurance providers in Boston
We offer a breakdown of popular renters insurance providers on our website, including their business models and their ratings from J.D. Power and AM Best, who rate insurance companies for their customer service and financial stability, respectively.
For more information, click on the links below for our renters insurance reviews:
What else do you need to know about renters insurance in Boston, MA?
There’s just a few more things you should know about renters insurance in Boston before you buy a policy:
In MA, you may be eligible for discounts if you’re a university employee or alumnus
Massachusetts is home to 114 institutes of higher learning. Thirty-five are located in Boston. If you’re a student or alumni of a university in Boston, you may be able to get discounts on both renters and auto insurance.
We mentioned Liberty Mutual’s discounts for students and alumni of Boston U. Harvard students and alumni might be eligible for discounts from MetLife, Travelers, and Electric as well.
Call an insurance agent in your area to find out if you’re eligible for a discount on renters insurance.
Does renters insurance require a credit check in Boston?
Yes, most renters insurance providers will run your credit in Boston, and your credit history will likely affect your premiums. If you’re worried, check out our guide on getting renters insurance without a credit check for tips on limiting the impact your score will have on your rates.
Can landlords require renters insurance in Boston?
Yes, landlords can require renters insurance in Boston. If your landlord requires renters insurance as a condition of the lease, they have the right to evict you for refusing to get it or for letting your policy lapse.
(This is true for the rest of the country as well, except Oklahoma. They’re the only state that prohibits landlords from making renters insurance mandatory.)
How we gathered our data on renters insurance prices for Boston
We obtained renters insurance quotes from the city’s top insurance providers to gauge the average price of renters insurance in Boston.
Our renters insurance quotes assume the following:
- Personal property coverage: $30,000
- Personal liability coverage: $100,000
- Guest medical coverage: $1,000
- Loss-of-use coverage: Insurer’s default (usually based on personal property coverage)
- Deductible: $500
- Insured party: 30-year old male, employed, unmarried, with no pets
The demographics and policy details we chose obviously don’t apply to everyone. You might not be an employed, unmarried 30-year-old man without pets, and you may decide to choose a different deductible or different amount of coverage. This means you’ll receive slightly different quotes than we did, but because the price of renters insurance is so low, your rates probably won’t be that different in absolute terms.
We didn’t include down payments or installation fees in our quotes. If you’d like more information about how those may impact your premiums (and how to avoid them), check out our post on getting renters insurance without a down payment.