It’s spring! We posted an article last week pointing out that the busiest time of year for moving is between now and October. Families move with the school calendar and so you’ll be seeing more and more For Sale signs around your towns. Some of these are landlords selling to investors or people who want to move in and make a nice home for their family.

Some of you might find yourselves in the situation of moving because you are graduating from school, are facing a job change, or had your rental sold-out from either under you. Or maybe you aren’t moving at all and for that, you should be truly grateful because moving ranks right up there with death and losing a job as far as being stressful.

We asked dog lover and NEW PAWSibilities fan Justin Schmick of Farmers Insurance Schmick Agency to share information about renter’s insurance for those of you who are currently are or will be renting.

We are in no way affiliated with Justin or any other insurance agent, realtor, attorney, or any other professional who takes the time at our request to write an article on a specific topic of interest. What Justin didn’t mention is that agreeing to purchase renter’s insurance could be the reason you got the apartment over everyone else who was looking. Rentals for families with pets can feel impossible to find. Renter’s insurance is one way to show the landlord or leasing agent that you are a responsible dog owner and the best choice to take care of the property. Hopefully, you’ll never use your policy like every other type of insurance. But if you need it you’ll have it and you’ll have Scruffy. Or whatever you and Justin chose to name the Beagle. Justin can be found on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/schmickagency/

Renter’s Insurance: Why You Should Consider It: Justin Schmick, Farmers Insurance

If you are renting and own a dog you absolutely need renter’s insurance. I’ll tell you why. Let’s say Dave and Julie just got married. They decide they need to get themselves a dog in the home they are renting. Naturally, Dave and Julie go to NEW PAWSibilities and bring home Scruffy, their brand-new Beagle. You can also ask me what to name the dog since Beagles aren’t typically scruffy.

Scruffy is a good dog but he’s super territorial like some dogs can be. One day Janice from next door walks into the front yard to leave her new neighbors some extra brownies she baked. So that the neighbors won’t miss then she decides to leave the brownies on the front steps. Yes, we should all have neighbors as wonderful as Janice although she’s known as the diet killer.

Scruffy, who’s on a longish lead, doesn’t know Janice and assumes she is there to harm him or his new family. Scruffy bites Janice and causes some fairly serious injuries causing an emergency trip to go to the hospital to get checked out. Because Janice’s job requires her to be on her feet most of the day and Scruffy bit her in the ankle, Janice has to take a week off of work.
Who’s going to pay for Janice’s doctor bills? Who is going to reimburse Janice for the week of work she had to miss? The answer might make you think twice about adopting that cute little Beagle Janice has been wanting since she moved away to college and left her childhood Beagle at home with her brother. Without renter’s insurance, the answer is you. Yes, YOU are going to be on the hook for those payments. Have you ever taken a look at the bill your health insurance company receives after you have a hospital visit? It usually has a lot of digits. Remember, you just bought a house and you have way better use for the money than paying off someone’s medical bills and a possible lawsuit.

Renter’s insurance, which is good for more than the possibility of any dog-related insurances or damages, runs in the $100.00 – $200.00 a year range depending on several factors. Having renter’s insurance doesn’t mean your dog might not cause an injury but it can certainly help you to avoid all that trouble and hopefully keep Janice as a good neighbor who keeps bringing brownies. You’re probably thinking that your dog will never be unleashed, trust me, they are escape artists, and Scruffy would never, ever bite someone. Let’s say that’s all true and it probably is. The biting part, not the running around unleashed part, especially at 11:00 at night.

Just for fun, it’s fun because you bought renter’s insurance and are able to decorate your home instead of paying medical bills, let’s bring Dave, Julie, and Scruffy back but this time we’re leaving Scruffy at home because she has been through enough. Dave and Julie are renting a nice apartment downtown and Scruffy decides one day after Dave and Julie head to work that he’s lonelier than usual and maybe his new family is never coming back. Separation anxiety is a thing with most shelter dogs.

Scruffy becomes anxious and starts to panic and scratches and chews on the lovely oak cabinetry that Dave and Julie’s landlord has just put in. Those cabinets are part of the existing structure of the apartment. Their landlord he has an insurance policy that covers those $2,000 cabinets so you are off the hook, right? Wrong.

While the landlord is not going to come after you for the money to pay for the cabinets, his insurance company has the legal right to recoup what they are spending replacing those cabinets. Unless you purchased renter’s insurance their high-priced legal team will be contacting you and requesting payment in full for that $2,000.

Let’s hope those two incidents didn’t happen to Dave and Julie in one week. Well, because they were smart enough to adopt instead of shop they likely did their research and learned how affordable and smart renter’s insurance is and they purchased it before they ever adopted Scruffy from NEW PAWSibilities.

Life, even without a dog, has a way of being unpredictable. Purchasing the appropriate amount of insurance, renter’s homeowners, automobile, and health doesn’t mean the unexpected doesn’t happen. It does mean you’ll be better prepared to not have to lay out the cash you don’t have or choose to spend when something does happen.