9 Best Renters Insurance Companies in New Jersey of 2023

Renters insurance shouldn't be overlooked if you're a renter in New Jersey. Find out which companies PropertyNest named the top insurers in New Jersey and which one might be right for you. Learn about what renters insurance, what it covers, and how you can earn discounts.
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If you live in a rental home or apartment in New Jersey, it’s an absolute must that you purchase renters insurance.

If your rental is burglarized and your expensive laptop or valuable jewelry is stolen, you’ll have to bear the cost directly for new replacements.

And if you don’t have a lot of cash or savings in the bank to cover damaged or stolen personal belongings, a renters insurance policy can help by paying the costs and preventing you from paying out-of-pocket.

So, renters insurance for Garden State gives you peace of mind that you’ll be protected.

The average basic renters insurance in New Jersey is $13 a month, or you might want to go with an additional plan which costs more but provides greater coverage.

For that low price, renters insurance will cover damage to your personal possessions, liability claims, and medical bills for guests who are injured due to an accident in your rental.

In addition, if your rental becomes temporarily unlivable and unsafe due to a fire and you have to move out, renters insurance will cover your living expenses, such as hotel stays and restaurant meals.

In a nutshell, renters insurance is the best defense against things that happen in your life that you have no control over.

Finding the best renters insurance policy in New Jersey can be a challenging endeavor.

You need to search for the most affordable policy with great quality and better customer service with a live agent or the policy’s website. And you need to know how much you want to pay and what will be covered, among other things.

Compare the coverage and cost of the best renters insurance providers in New Jersey picked by PropertyNest expert editors:

Best Renters Insurance Companies in New Jersey 

  • Lemonade: Best for Resolving Claims Instantly
  • Allstate: Best for the Cheapest Rates
  • Liberty Mutual: Best for Young Renters
  • American Family: Best for Excellent Customer Service
  • State Farm: Best for Those Who Need a Local Insurance Agent
  • Nationwide: Best for Customized Coverage at No Extra Cost
  • Travelers: Best for the Most Endorsements
  • The Hartford: Best for the Most Unique Riders
  • Farmers Insurance: Best for Personal Property Coverage

Lemonade: Best for Resolving a Claims Instantly

Lemonade Renters Insurance, New Jersey
Editors star rating review
4.5
Editor's Rating (4.5 Stars out of 5)

Lemonade is the newest company on this list that sells renters insurance in New Jersey. Despite being young, it’s currently the darling of insurance companies.

It’s more for the tech-savvy, as you can only buy a policy on Lemonade’s website and mobile app.

It’s also ideal for those who want a policy that is simple to understand and has great clarity from a tech-based company.

But here’s the main reason why we chose Lemonade.

The insurance company states that about 30% of its claims are paid out instantly once you give your claim details in the company’s app. Similar companies usually take a few weeks to resolve a claim.

Also, bear in mind that Lemonade favors total coverage for personal belongings.

Rather than giving you an actual cash value, Lemonade offers replacement cost value (RCV) coverage for your belongings, so you are in a good financial position to purchase new replacements even if your items are old, such as a three-year-old laptop.

Lemonade offers a range of plans to accommodate the needs and budgets of its customers. For only $5 per month, you can get started with just the basics; however, if your desired features include more than what's provided in this package, then an additional fee may apply based on how much time/money they would like their account set at different price points (e.g., monthly or annually).

The cost of renters insurance varies depending on where you live, the condition your building is in, and what kind of coverage you need.

Read the full Lemonade renters insurance review.

Lemonade Renters Insurance Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Affordability, with coverage starting as low as $5 a month.
  • Online signup and claims processing are designed to be quick and easy.
  • Lemonade’s Giveback program donates a percentage of revenue to charitable causes.
Cons
  • Not for those who want to talk to a live customer service agent.
  • Availability varies by state.
How is Lemonade Renters Insurance Rated?
J.D. Power (out of 1,000)853
BBBB+
NAIC Complaint Index1.94

Allstate: Best for the Cheapest Rates

allstate--renters-insurance-nj.jpg
Editors star rating review
5.0
Editor's Rating (5 Stars out of 5)

For many renters, deciding on which renters insurance to buy is based on how much it costs. In the scheme of things, purchasing renters insurance won’t leave a dent in your pocket and will cost you only around $180 a year.

So if you’re on a budget or want low-cost but high-quality coverage, it’s good to know that Allstate offers one of the cheapest renters insurance in New Jersey and across the country.

The average monthly price for Allstate in New Jersey is $15.

It beats heavy hitters like State Farm and Travelers based on a sample policy with $20,000 in property coverage, $100,000 in liability coverage, and a $500 deductible.

Besides being very affordable, Allstate offers several discounts.

Bundling auto and life insurance policies, renters insurance, and installing a security system will get you discounts.

But besides these norms, Allstate offers some unique discounts not found in competitors. These are: being a member of the U.S. military, being 55 and older (up to 25%), and not filing a claim for a set period of time (20%).

Also, Allstate covers damage to personal property in non-traditional ways, including theft in a school or an office, malicious mischief, riots, and civil commotion.

Sudden and accidental damage from artificially generated electrical current.

Read a full Allstate renters insurance review.

Allstate Renters Insurance Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Coverage for additional living expenses is included in a standard policy.
  • The website has ample learning resources for consumers.
Cons
  • Standard policies don't cover floods or earthquakes.
  • Replacement cost coverage usually requires a higher premium.
How is Allstate Renters Insurance Rated?
J.D. Power (out of 1,000)837
A.M. Best - Financial Strength RatingA+
NAIC Complaint Index2.05
BBBA-

Liberty Mutual: Best for Young Renters

liberty-mutual-renters-insurance-nj.jpg
Editors star rating review
4.5
Editor's Rating (4.5 Stars out of 5)

Liberty Mutual has been in business for over 100 years and has always offered low-cost insurance for renters, starting at $5 a month.

This makes it ideal for young renters and college students living in off-campus apartments. These people are usually just starting out in the workforce or are still in college and don’t have the means to buy renters insurance.

But if they looked at Liberty Mutual, they would see that the insurance company has a policy that caters to the young. The company can offer them the lowest rates for personal property coverage.

In addition, for New Jersey coverage, young people can take advantage of the cheapest renters insurance available. A basic policy can start as low as $5 and go up to $14. Liberty Mutual’s fees are 15% cheaper than its competitors in this class.

Read a full Liberty Mutual home insurance review.

Liberty Mutual Renters Insurance Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Cheaper renters insurance rates than average in New Jersey.
  • Easy to file a claim online that takes only 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Discount when you bundle coverage.
  • Covers 50 states, so if you move out of New Jersey, your rental insurance can follow you.
Cons
  • Its quality of service is unfavorable.
  • Runs near the bottom of a J.D. Power renters insurance study.
How is Liberty Mutual Renters Insurance Rated?
J.D. Power (out of 1,000)834
A.M. Best - Financial Strength RatingA
BBBA+
NAIC Complaint Index2.37

American Family: Best for Excellent Customer Service

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Editors star rating review
4.5
Editor's Rating (4.5 Stars out of 5)

Reviewers in New Jersey emphatically agree that American Family has the best customer service compared to other renters insurance companies.

That’s because you can communicate with American Family’s customer service any day of the week and at any hour of the day.

So you can resolve issues regarding personal property, medical payments to others, and loss of use claims anytime you feel like it. And, if you wake up in the middle of the night because you want to file a claim that’s been keeping you up, you can do that.

Besides customer service, American Family has a plethora of additional benefits.

An add-on travel protection allows you to cancel a trip, for example.

American Family will pay for the costs if your sump pump overflows or your sewer backs up. And if you are a victim of identity theft, American will pay for your losses.

American Family Renters Insurance Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Easy access to a customer login and mobile app for self-service.
  • The insurance has fewer than the expected number of customer complaints.
  • Many discounts such as when you use auto pay.
  • If you are related to another American Family customer, you get a discount.
  • Property claims are “better than average.”
Cons
  • One study claims that renters insurance customer satisfaction ratings are below average.
How is American Family Renters Insurance Rated?
J.D. Power (out of 1,000)833
A.M. Best - Financial Strength RatingA
BBBA
NAIC Complaint Index0.37

State Farm: Best for Those Who Need a Local Insurance Agent

statefarm--renters-insurance-nj.jpg
Editors star rating review
4.5
Editor's Rating (4.5 Stars out of 5)

Most renters insurance companies we reviewed can be accessed by their app. You can file and track a claim, pay bills, and more.

But America’s largest insurance company, among many other things, is perfect for those who want to consult or connect with a local live agent to do their business or take care of problems.

Most of these people are older or retired and not computer or smartphone-savvy.

For these people, they want connection rather than technology, they want to talk to a live person who can comfort them, for example, in case of a loss.

Besides the standard coverage, one of the many features that stand out is the replacement cost coverage that all members receive. A standard policy covers the actual cash value of lost or damaged property. State Farm, in contrast, covers the current market value of the lost or destroyed property even if your property depreciates.

However, if you only want the actual cash value coverage, State Farm allows customers to skip the replacement cost coverage for a credit on your account.

For renters, State Farm only offers two discounts.

Multiple policy discounts when you bundle renters insurance with auto insurance.

If you have smart home protection, smoke detectors, alarms, deadbolt locks, and any measure that makes your rental safer, you are qualified for a home protection device discount.

Read a full State Farm renters insurance review.

State Farm Renters Insurance Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Includes inflation coverage.
  • Very few customer complaints for an insurance company of its size.
  • Can be costly if you add on add-ons.
Cons
  • State Farm fails to list different coverages and savings on its site.
  • Only two discounts are available for standard renters insurance.
How is State Farm Renters Insurance Rated?
J.D. Power (out of 1,000)836
A.M. Best - Financial Strength RatingA++
BBBA+
NAIC Complaint Index1.77

Nationwide: Best for Customized Coverage at No Extra Cost

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Editors star rating review
4.0
Editor's Rating (4 Stars out of 5)

Nationwide’s rental insurance for New Jersey residents offers the standard coverage, which includes personal property, liability, and medical payment coverage.

What makes Nationwide stand out is two coverages that are unique to the company and are offered for no extra cost if you buy a basic renters insurance policy.

The credit card add-on means you are covered for any unauthorized charges on your credit or debit cards up to your policy limit.

The building addition or alteration policy kicks in if your landlord allows you to make home improvements to your rental, all of which are covered.

Nationwide Renters Insurance Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Some free coverage and helpful add-ons.
  • Top provider in the industry.
  • Personalized service due to the availability of local agents.
  • Inflation protection.
Cons
  • Below average customer satisfaction and reviews.
  • Rates may be higher than some.
  • For reviewers, credit card coverage is at the bottom of their needs since most come with loss protection.
  • Content replacement coverage a bit misleading. Your replacement cost coverage may involve repairing your items rather than replacing them.
How is Nationwide Renters Insurance Rated?
J.D. Power (out of 1,000)859
A.M. Best - Financial Strength RatingA+
BBBA+
NAIC Complaint Index0.04 (Very Low)

Travelers: Best for the Most Endorsements

travelers--renters-insurance-nj.jpg
Editors star rating review
4.0
Editor's Rating (4 Stars out of 5)

Travelers is best for renters in New Jersey who want to extend or add to the basic standard coverage, which is called an endorsement. There are seven unique endorsements, and that is the most of any insurance company we looked at while compiling this list.

Two add-ons you have to pay for include:

Structural Coverage

Coverage for structures in and around your rental, like garages and sheds.

Additional Replacement Cost Protection Coverage

If your renters insurance coverage doesn’t cover your home or apartment rental repairs in their entirety, you can get an add-on that costs an additional amount of up to 25% of your existing insurance.

This endorsement is great if there’s an increase in the cost to rebuild your home, such as an increase in the cost to redo your rental due to an increase in labor or materials.

Travelers Renters Insurance Pros & Cons

Pros
  • More additional forms of coverage are offered.
  • HIghly rated.
  • Competitive price compared to other renters insurance.
Cons
  • Add-on rates are comparatively high.
  • Few discounts offered.
  • May be slow in processing claims.
  • Renters must pay the full premium at once.
How is Travelers Renters Insurance Rated?
J.D. Power (out of 1,000)801
A.M. Best - Financial Strength RatingA++
BBBA
NAIC Complaint Index3.88

The Hartford: Best for the Most Unique Riders

The Hartford Renters Insurance, NJ
Editors star rating review
4.5
Editor's Rating (4.5 Stars out of 5)

A rider is a type of insurance policy that covers those who are insured with additional coverage and benefits.

The Hartford made our cut because the company offers unique riders. Here are some that other insurance companies do not offer.

Equipment protection covers not only electronics that break down but also small appliances like microwaves that aren't built into the unit.

What’s unique is that if you buy electronics and appliances that are more environmentally friendly or energy-efficient, the insurance pays for the upgrade.

The valuable items rider will pay up to $10,000 for stolen, lost, or damaged property per item to replace it.

Business properties in your home, such as office equipment and your laptop, are protected.

Most renters insurance companies don’t cover mold, but at least with The Hartford, you can take out a rider for coverage against mold damage and liability.

With assisted living care coverage, a person who has a relative who resides in an assisted living care home will be covered.

This means that the relative’s personal property, liability, and additional living expenses are covered.

A policy covers liability and even includes broken windows if you're responsible for property damage.

For example, if your six-year-old throws a baseball at your neighbor’s window and it gets shattered, you’re covered.

You can even get coverage to protect yourself and your roommate. Both persons must be unrelated and have an equal interest in the rider. This is unique in that this coverage comes with no additional charge.

Hartford Renters Insurance Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Premiums are lower than those of many competitors.
  • No coverage limit is imposed for lost or damaged electronics.
  • Customers age 50 or older who are members of AARP can bundle auto and renters insurance to save money on premiums for both.
  • If you live in a rental building that offers 24-hour, in-house security, you can get a discount on your premiums.
  • Loyal customers who keep renewing their policies receive ongoing discounts.
Cons
  • A significant focus on AARP members might turn off millennials and younger customers.
  • The insurance receives a relatively high number of customer complaints.
How is The Hartford Renters Insurance Rated?
J.D. Power (out of 1,000)886
A.M. Best - Financial Strength RatingA+
BBBA+
NAIC Complaint Index5

Farmers Insurance: Best for Personal Property Coverage

farmers--renters-insurance-nj.jpg
Editors star rating review
4.5
Editor's Rating (4.5 Stars out of 5)

Farmers Insurance puts its personal property coverage first.

Farmers will not only cover theft from your rental, as other insurance companies do, but will also pay you if you are subjected to theft from your car, rental vehicle, or hotel room while traveling.

The company features floater insurance, which is a policy that covers personal property that is easily movable and comes with more coverage than other similar renters insurance companies.

Also known as a “personal property floater,” Farmers cover belongings with high value, such as jewelry, furs, expensive electronics like computers and stereo equipment, musical instruments, and art.

The personal articles must be valued above $500.

In addition, you can get an add-on called Identity Shield. If your identity is stolen, Farmers will help you notify all three credit bureaus of identity theft and replace any important documents, to name a few.

Also, the Farmers mobile app, available for iOS and Android platforms, is intuitive and easy to navigate. You can access bills and payments, policy documents, claims filing and management, and direct contact with a Farmer's agent.

Farmers Renters Insurance Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Floaters are available for extra coverage for valuable items.
  • Farmers offers a wide variety of coverage.
Cons
  • Covers inside water problems but doesn't cover damage from outside water sources.
  • Farmers renters insurance isn't available in every state.
How is Farmers Renters Insurance Rated?
J.D. Power (out of 1,000)831
A.M. Best - Financial Strength RatingA
BBBA-
NAIC Complaint Index0.56
Compare the Best Renters Insurance Companies
CompanyPropertyNest RatingJ.D. Power (out of 1,000)A.M Best RatingBBB Rating
Allstate5.0837A+A-
USAA5.0886A++A+
Lemonade4.5853Not RatedB+
American Family4.5836*AA
Erie Insurance4.5851*A+A+
Farmers4.5831AA-
Liberty Mutual4.5834AA+
State Farm4.5836A++A+
Hartford4.5886*A+A+
MetLife4.5904*A+D-
Nationwide4.0859A+A+
Progressive4.0819*A+Not Rated
Amica4.0854*A+A+
Travelers4.0801A++A

Is Renters Insurance Mandatory to Rent an Apartment in New Jersey

In the state of New Jersey, renters insurance is not legally required to rent an apartment. However, it is highly recommended by renters and landlords alike due to the numerous advantages renters insurance provides.

What is the Average Cost of Renters Insurance in New Jersey?

The average renters insurance cost varies from state to state.

The average cost of basic or standard renters insurance in New Jersey is$13 per month or $165 per year.

The affordable fee is lower than the national average of $15 per month.

But note that the average cost will raise the cost of your policy due to your rental location.

For example, if you live in a city in New Jersey with a high crime rate or in a natural disaster zone.

Is it Possible to Lower Your Renters Insurance Rate?

If you want to lower the cost of your policy, you can do several things:

  1. You can increase your deductible. Your deductible is the amount deducted from your payout for a loss of property. For example, if you have a $1,000 deductible and a claim for $5,000 in property damage, your insurance check will be $4,000. The higher your deductible, the cheaper your premium.
  2. If the company you choose offers car insurance, most will offer you a discount if you bundle your renters policy with your auto coverage. For example, a 5% bunding discount on a $3,000 auto policy would cost you $150. This figure can nearly pay for your renters insurance premium.
  3. Your policy will also give you a discount if your rental has a security system, such as smoke detectors, burglar alarms, safety devices, or deadbolts.

Remember that your rate will increase every time you file a claim for your personal items.

So, filing a claim only if the item is worth more than your deductible makes sense.

What Does New Jersey Renters Insurance Cover?

In the Garden State, Renters Insurance covers four areas. Of note is that these four areas are what usually make up renters insurance no matter where you live in the U.S. It is the riders and add-ons that make each renters insurance different.

Here’s a full list of covered losses found in most New Jersey renters insurance policies:

  • Fire and lightning
  • Windstorm and hail
  • Theft and vandalism
  • Explosions
  • Riots
  • Damage by vehicle
  • Smoke damage
  • Falling objects
  • Weight of snow, ice, and sleet
  • Water damage not caused by flooding

Liability

Liability protects you against lawsuits from people who have bodily injuries or property damages that you or your family caused to them.

Liability also covers your legal defense, and a standard policy includes up to $100,000 in liability coverage.

For example, if your dog bites your neighbor, this policy will pay for any medical bills incurred.

Personal Property

This policy protects your personal property if there’s a covered peril.

A covered peril is a damaging event that’s carried in your policy, such as theft or vandalism.

And if there are climate changes like lightning and windstorms and your property is damaged too, that’s also covered.

Also, if it happens that there’s a fire, smoke damage, an explosion, and other events that may be listed in your insurance, you’re covered again.

Most Common Items Stolen in Home Burglaries
TypeItemsCoverage
Cash or Other Forms of CurrencyBank notes, bullions, gold or silver (non-jewelry), coins, medals, smart cards, stored value cards.Most renters insurance policies will only cover up to $200 in stolen cash.
Electronic EquipmentPhones (iPhones, Androids, etc.), computers, laptops, iPads, earbuds, smart watches, TV sets, gaming systems, Alexa or Google home devices, etc.Standard renters insurance policies cover the loss or damage of electronic devices.
ClothingDesigner purse/handbags, shoes, jewelry, designer watchesStandard renters policies cover your personal clothing or designer handbags etc.
Power ToolsDrills & drivers, saws.Covered under the personal property coverage.
Kitchen appliancesRefrigerators, microwaves, blenders, electric mixers, ice makers, coffee machines, and other appliances.Renters insurance covers personal appliances if they are damaged, stolen, or destroyed by a covered peril.
Prescription drugsWill not cover stolen prescription drugs.
Personal informationBank accounts, identity information stolen from documents, or stolen personal equipment.Most companies do not include identity theft as a covered peril in a standard renters insurance policy.
FirearmsPistols, riflesLegal firearms are covered under personal property coverage.

Loss of Use

If there’s a fire or another covered event that damages your rental to the point that you can no longer live there safely, loss of use will reimburse you for any meals that you have at restaurants, as well as any basic or necessary living expenses that you have to pay out of pocket.

This means expenses from the smallest detail to the largest, from toothbrush and toothpaste to living expenses like a hotel or motel room.

Medical Payments

This policy pays for medical bills if a person's bodily injury happens on your rental property, regardless of fault.

Remember that your insurance will cover all the events listed above as long as they don’t exceed the amount of coverage you bought.

Unfortunately, if any damage exceeds the amount of your coverage, you will be responsible for paying the costs that aren’t covered.

Covered losses include things like damage from fire, smoke, theft, vandalism, lightning, windstorms, explosions, and water from internal sources like plumbing leaks, a furnace, an air conditioner, and a water heater.

What are Endorsements?

Endorsements, also known as add-ons, are additional coverage added to your insurance to raise your coverage.

For example, standard renters insurance rarely covers damage from perils like earthquakes and floods. So you should get an endorsement for each if you want the added protection.

For some insurance companies, an endorsement may not be available for the coverage you need.

If this is the case, you may purchase a separate insurance policy to ensure you have additional coverage.

What Does Renters Insurance Typically Exclude?

A high-value property may only be covered up to $1,000 or $1,500. You may need to buy a separate rider if it's worth a lot more.

Some renters insurance has extra pet liability for an additional cost, but make sure to check this thoroughly since certain dog breeds are not included in your policy.

That’s because these breeds are regarded as dangerous or aggressive to renters insurance companies.

Certain natural disasters, such as earthquakes or floods, are usually not covered, even if they damage your property. This means you’ll have to shell out for repairs on your own.

Also not covered are vehicles, but remember that your bike is covered.

But if you leave your expensive Chanel clutch in your car and it is stolen, that’s covered.

Keep in mind that your car is not covered if there’s damage.

Accidentally losing or misplacing items that are small in price (your iPhone) or high in cost (your pricey engagement ring) is also not covered.

Renters insurance won’t cover infestations as well, such as bedbugs or mice.

And unless you share renters insurance with your roommate, your roommate’s property isn’t covered.

In most cases, renters insurance companies advise that you shouldn’t share a policy because you may have more property to cover than your roommate or vice versa.

So it’s a good idea if you and your roommate get your own renters insurance.

How Much Coverage of Renters Insurance Do You Need?

When you buy renters insurance, you’ll need to figure out how much coverage you need.

Renters insurance is like any insurance policy, as the cost of your insurance depends on how much coverage you purchase.

Basic coverage plans typically start with $20,000 in personal property coverage.

Liability coverage starts with $100,000, which can pay damages and legal expenses if you are sued because you accidentally injured or hurt another person or damaged that person’s property.

It’s recommended by various sources that you should have enough coverage for your personal effects in the event they are damaged or destroyed.

The coverage should protect the total value of your personal belongings, from clothes to furniture and electronics to appliances.

It’s important to know that one of the reasons why renters insurance is cheap is because the basic policy has very low coverage limits for valuable items.

Valuable items include jewelry, art, and collectibles such as old maps, stamps, and first-edition books.

So, you will have to purchase an endorsement for full coverage, which will increase your monthly rate.

When Coverage is Not Enough Coverage

As suggested above, many of your possessions will not be covered by your personal property limit.

If you own priceless or exorbitantly expensive things like that Longo print, don’t expect that your insurance will cover the full cost of that artwork.

That’s because renters insurance companies cap how much they’ll pay you for valuable properties like jewelry.

To make sure that your jewelry is insured to its full value, you once again have to acquire more coverage.

Your other choice is buying a rider, which is a provision in your policy that adds more benefits to your basic renters insurance.

For both, your rate will go up. However, riders are usually low in price because they don’t involve too much underwriting.

How Much Renters Insurance Should You Buy?

Like any insurance policy, the cost of your renters insurance depends on how many personal properties you have and how much coverage you need.

The more you have to lose, the more insurance you need.

Many consumers, however, want to save money on their premiums, but this can backfire when there’s an event that’s not covered, leaving the consumers underinsured.

To determine how much renters coverage to buy, make a note of all your properties, list them on a spreadsheet or similar documentation, and include the cost for each item.

Use a roundabout figure if you can’t remember how much you paid for an item or lost the receipt.

Your inventory won’t be needed when you purchase insurance, but the documentation can cover you if you need to file a claim because then you will be able to prove the value of everything you own.

Keeping your documentation safe is easy. Email it to you as an attachment, or give a copy to a relative or friend.

Be prepared, as discussed above, to pay for a supplemental policy or an add-on with higher coverage limits if you have expensive jewelry or artwork or other high-value items.

In addition, you'll have to decide what type of property coverage to buy: an actual cash value policy or a replacement policy.

What is the Difference Between an Actual Cash Value and a Replacement Cost Value?

Knowing the difference is important when purchasing renters insurance because your provider will ask you to decide between both.

Replacement Cost Value (RCV) is when your laptop gets stolen and is four years old, and your insurance will pay to purchase a brand-new laptop today.

The cost to replace your item means what it would cost to replace your damaged or stolen item today.

In contrast, the Actual Cash Value (ACV) policy will only reimburse you for the depreciated value of your possessions if they're damaged or destroyed. For certain items, such as laptops or tablets, this means you won't get nearly enough to replace them with new ones.

But if you’re willing to go a little bit higher in your monthly insurance cost, a replacement cost value policy will provide enough money for you to purchase new and comparable items.

The RCV typically costs much more than an ACV policy, but it pays to replace your possessions with similar new ones.

The RCV is the one that most renters insurance buyers choose. It’s the most popular option as it covers property entirely.

How to Purchase Renters Insurance

Like other insurance policies, it pays to make comparisons.

To narrow down your focus, ask around. If your family, relatives, and friends rent and have renters insurance, ask them what they like about their policies.

Ask them if they are comfortable with their monthly fee.

If you know real estate agents, reach out to them because they are probably the very few who know everything about renters insurance.

Also, look at a company’s ratings and how many stars it has.

Use the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and J.D. Power’s ratings to narrow your search.

You can also find insurance ratings from AM Best, which rates companies by their ability to pay once you make a claim.

And do what we did. Search each insurance company to find customer reviews.

That should also narrow down your search if there are several verified complaints or if the reviews contain less than four stars.

Shop around online. You can get insurance quotes online at a company’s website that can help with comparison shopping.

To get an accurate quote, you’ll want to get coverage that you actually need.

This works by calculating the value of your possessions, the weather risks in your area, and how safe your neighborhood is, to name a few.

Remember that you should enter the same limits for each type of coverage when shopping around to get a direct comparison.

Then look at each company’s optional coverages, which you must pay extra to add to your policy.

Whether that’s a rider or an endorsement, get an appraisal of your valuable necklace to see if you need more coverage that will cover the entire value of that piece of jewelry.

Note that each insurance company will differ in cost if you want extra coverage, so that’s another reason why you should shop around.

After shopping around, save those quotes and compare them. Which company offers the most coverage at an affordable price?

Do this, and you’ll arrive at a policy that you’ll want to purchase.

Don’t Forget to Check Out an Insurance Company’s Customer Service

Try to gauge how good a company’s customer service is.

For example, see if they quickly call you back after filing online for a quote.

Or see if they take the time to go over every add-on available with patience and some hand-holding, whatever it takes for you to have a crystal-clear background on a company’s policy or policies.

If they fulfill your needs, you’ll have an idea of how much hassle you’ll have if you ever have to file a claim.

And finally, don’t just shop for the lowest rate. You should always consider the quality of coverage and the insurance company’s agents or customer service reps.

To consider the quality of the policy, you should check out an insurance company’s website besides using it to get an insurance quote.

You’ll want to know if it’s simple to find a telephone number to communicate with a customer service rep if you need to.

Also, is the website simple to use to file and track claims or pay your monthly dues?

That company is not for you if it’s an arduous process to get a refund to cover your damages.

Why Do You Need Renters Insurance If the Landlord Is Insured?

If you think you don’t need renters insurance because your landlord’s insurance covers you, think again.

A landlord’s insurance covers the apartment building but not your personal possessions.

As such, you need renters insurance to cover your personal belongings and to have liability coverage.

If you want to ensure that your possessions are covered while renting, purchasing renters insurance is a good idea, especially if you have high-cost valuables.

And besides, if you accidentally damage a neighboring apartment, you are liable for the damages.

For example, if your bathtub leaks and causes damage to your neighbor’s ceiling and possessions beneath you, you will have to cover that out of pocket if you don’t purchase renters insurance.

This can be very expensive, and your neighbor can even sue you.

And suppose you forego renters insurance and there’s a break-in in your rental apartment or a storm that causes property damage. In that case, you alone may be responsible for a lot of money in repair, replacement, and liability costs to cover your losses.

Your landlord's insurance policy doesn’t cover the space you rent or your effects. The landlord’s insurance protects the building and only the landlord’s personal belongings.

And if that landlord’s building is undergoing repair, the landlord’s insurance won’t pay for your living expenses. Only a renters insurance policy will do that.


Our Methodology

How We Ranked the Best Renters Insurance Companies in New Jersey

We gathered information from multiple trusted sites in renters insurance and the websites of insurance companies. We narrowed our search down to the needs of New Jersey residents by prioritizing the following:

Ease of Use

If you decide to buy renters insurance, you will be hit with a lot of information. You’ll need to know the difference between an RCV and an ACV, and the difference between an add-on, a rider, or an endorsement, for example.

Since renters insurance is complex, we looked at customer reviews on various sites that considered a company’s website and mobile applications based on how easy it is to navigate and how easy it is to file a claim in the fastest manner possible.

Customer Satisfaction

When looking for reviews for policy coverage, we also considered customer satisfaction. Is a company’s overall rating based on favorable reviews? Did the company receive an award for excellent service?

If so, we moved those companies to the top of our list.

Fast Response Times

Did your renters insurance respond quickly after you filed a claim? How many days or weeks did you have to wait to receive a refund?

We know you want to file a claim fast to get it off your mind and receive your refund immediately.

Affordability

We chose renters insurance that was affordable for every kind of renter.

Whether you have very expensive items you’d like to protect or basic coverage, you will find an insurer on this list that will fit your needs.

We also considered how many discounts an insurer can offer to policyholders that can reduce their monthly costs.

For example, we researched companies that offer discounts for bundling renters insurance with auto insurance and for upping the security of your rental.

Location

We've researched renters insurance quotes in major New Jersey counties and key cities - Bergen, Middlesex, Essex, Hudson, and Monmouth. We compared the renters insurance quotes and averages in cities such as Newark, Jersey City, Paterson, Elizabeth & Lakewood to understand better how much coverage would cost for your needs.