Best Cheap Renters Insurance in California of April 2024 (2024)

Top 5 Renters Insurance Providers in California

We rated multiple companies using our comprehensive methodology and determined the following eight to be the best affordable providers of renters insurance in California.

Toggle Renters Insurance

Our Pick for Custom Pricing

Best Cheap Renters Insurance in California of April 2024 (1)

4.1

Our Rating

Cost: 4.3
Availability and Ease of Use: 3.6
Brand Trust: 4.5
Coverage: 4

Our Review

A.M. BestAJ.D. PowerNR

MONTHLY COST$12.59

Pros and Cons

Pros Basic plan available from $5 a month in most areas Completely customizable coverage to set your own price Offers unique add-ons like pet protection and identity theft coverage Cons Is newer to the industry and lacks real customer reviews May be challenging to speak with a customer service representative via phone

Why We Chose Toggle

Toggle is a tech-forward renters insurance provider that can be a good choice for anyone working to build their credit. As a renter, the monthly payments you make to your landlord are not reported to the three major credit reporting bureaus responsible for maintaining credit score data. However, Toggle’s unique Credit Lift option can help you report and get credit for your monthly rent payments.

If you are looking for a more customizable option for your renters insurance, Toggle may be worth considering. It includes more unique options for add-on coverage, ranging from protection for pet damage to specialized coverage for the tools and equipment if you have a side hustle. This high level of customization also allows you to set your own price with the most basic levels available at just $5 per month. Toggle is also underwritten by 21st Century Assurance Company, combining the financial strength of major insurers with the personalization range of a fintech startup.

Discounts and Endorsem*nts

Based on our research, Toggle currently offers a diminishing deductible discount and a multi-policy discount. Although it does not offer any additional discounts on renters policies, Toggle users do receive a wide variety of discounts on products and services such as meal kits, streaming services, moving services, internet, and dining.

The company also offers multiple policy endorsem*nts, including:

  • Identity protector
  • Temporary living costs
  • Pet Parent
  • High-value items
  • Side hustle

Allstate Renters Insurance

Our Pick for Seniors

4.3

Our Rating

Cost: 5
Availability and Ease of Use: 4.2
Brand Trust: 4.7
Coverage: 2.5

Our Review

A.M. BestA+J.D. Power835/1000

MONTHLY COST$14.08

Pros and Cons

Pros Unique personal property inventory app for tracking value Claims typically processed within 14 days, with over 14,000 available claims center employees Multiple discount options Cons Quotes don’t include much detail on coverage Lacks earthquake coverage in California

Why We Chose Allstate

Allstate offers excellent coverage in almost all our ranking factors. From customer service availability to additional benefits, it’s a great choice for renters all over the country, including the Golden State. However, our quote didn’t include an option for earthquake protection, putting it further down the list for California.

Discounts and Endorsem*nts

Discounts

  • Autopay
  • Claim-free
  • Multi-policy bundling
  • Retired seniors

Add-ons

  • Identity theft protection
  • Scheduled personal property add-ons

Travelers Renters Insurance

Our Pick for Deductible Options

Best Cheap Renters Insurance in California of April 2024 (3)

4.0

Our Rating

Cost: 4.1
Availability and Ease of Use: 5
Brand Trust: 4.3
Coverage: 3

Our Review

A.M. BestA++J.D. Power835/1000

MONTHLY COST$14.92

Pros and Cons

Pros Multiple deductible choices from $500 to $10,000 Optional additional coverage package that includes refrigerated property and personal injury 24-hour security guard discount Cons Minimum personal property coverage of $30,000 that makes premiums higher Can’t add earthquake coverage from online tool

Why We Chose Travelers

With 168 years in business, Travelers is the most experienced company in the insurance industry. If you’re looking for a trusted provider that offers multiple deductible options, it’s the perfect choice for your rental. Though the quote we received was lower than average at $14.92 per month, Travelers offers eight deductible options from $500 to $10,000, giving you the opportunity to customize your premium based on your selection.

Discounts and Endorsem*nts

Discounts

  • Claims-free
  • Multi-policy bundling

Add-ons

  • Additional housing improvements
  • Personal property replacement cost
  • Valuable personal property

USAA Renters Insurance

Our Pick for Military Members

4.4

Our Rating

Cost: 4.8
Availability and Ease of Use: 4.6
Brand Trust: 5
Coverage: 3

Our Review

A.M. BestA++J.D. Power894/1000

MONTHLY COST$18.17

Pros and Cons

Pros Advertises premiums as low as 33 cents per day — about $10 per month Standard coverage includes flood and earthquake insurance Provides unique offerings geared toward military members Cons Discounts are lacking compared to competitors on this list Policyholders must be eligible service members or family of a service member

Why We Chose USAA

For military members, USAA renters insurance is an excellent option. Its standard policy offers all the usual coverage and features you’d expect in a renters insurance contract and then some. USAA covers all policyholders for flood and earthquake damage, which is often only available through expensive add-ons.

Additionally, USAA offers personal property replacement cost coverage, which means its payouts don’t factor in depreciation. One considerable downside is that you or a family member must be retired from or currently serving in the military to qualify for USAA membership.

Discounts and Endorsem*nts

Discounts

  • Active-duty military
  • Claims-free
  • Home security systems
  • Multi-policy bundling

Add-ons

  • Business property
  • Personal property replacement cost

Nationwide

Our Pick for Valuable Endorsem*nts

4.5

Our Rating

Cost: 4.5
Availability and Ease of Use: 4.6
Brand Trust: 5
Coverage: 4

Our Review

A.M. BestAJ.D. Power852/1000

MONTHLY COST$17.92

Pros and Cons

Pros Includes tree removal from covered perils Dwelling coverage for any additions or alteration to the building Many optional add-ons to fine-tune your policy Cons Higher premiums for standard policies No earthquake coverage offered on our quote in California

Why We Chose Nationwide

Nationwide is known for its extensive list of endorsem*nts. Getting a policy with Nationwide is the right decision for renters looking for fine-tuned coverage that’s catered to their needs. Policies come at a higher rate, especially with the add-ons, but they can be worthwhile for Californians that want some extra protection.

Discounts and Endorsem*nts

Discounts

  • Claims-free
  • Multi-policy
  • Protective device

Add-ons

  • Brand New Belongings
  • Building ordinance or law
  • Identity theft protection
  • Loss assessment
  • Special limits of liability
  • Water backup (limited)

The Cost of Renters Insurance in California

According to data collected by Quadrant Information Services in 2023, renters insurance costs $187 per year or $15.58 per month on average in the state of California. The cost of your unique policy will differ based on the size of your rental, your specific location and any endorsem*nts or discounts that you select or are eligible for. Using the chart below to get an idea of the relative price of the top renters insurance providers in the state.

The cost of renters insurance can vary greatly based on your location and the amount of personal property coverage you need. Find out how much you can expect to pay in your area using the chart below before getting a quote from your preferred providers.

Cheapest Renters Insurance in California

Cost is the most important factor to consumers when selecting a renters insurance company according to our 2024 survey, so we identified to the top 5 cheapest providers in California to help you find the perfect fit. We recommend getting quotes from at least three of these providers to make sure you aren't sacrificing coverage for a low cost policy. The cheapest renters insurance provider in California is State Farm with policies costing an average of $11.75 per month.

Common Renters Insurance Claims in California

Best Cheap Renters Insurance in California of April 2024 (6)Because renters insurance doesn’t cover the property that tenants live on, renters are generally unaffected by some causes of property damage that subject homeowners to risk, such as wind and hail. However, that doesn’t mean renters are entirely in the clear. Here are several common losses that California renters experience.

Theft

Protection of personal property is a major component of a typical renters insurance policy, and theft is a major cause of loss for renters across the country. While you wouldn’t be responsible for the broken window a burglar left behind, you would need to file a claim to replace your TV or jewelry that was stolen.

Often, renters insurance covers theft of belongings from your apartment and vehicle, even when it is off-premises. These situations are prevalent causes of property crimes in California, according to the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC). Out of all the reported property crimes in California in 2021, 63% were larceny thefts and 16% were burglaries.

Earthquakes

According to the United States Geological Survey, about 10,000 earthquakes occur each year in the southern California area. Of those 10,000, approximately 15 to 20 are greater than magnitude 4.0.

If you’re worried about damage to your property from earthquakes, The California Earthquake Authority is the primary insurer for earthquake coverage in California. This separate earthquake coverage can run as low as an additional $2.08 per month, according to the quotes we received.

Wildfires

Fire and smoke is a covered peril in typical renters insurance policies, which is great news for California residents. In addition to the always-present risk of a fire starting from within apartments, such as from cooking mishaps or burning candles, many Californians are subject to prevalent wildfire risk.

The record damage from wildfires in 2020 at 4.3M acres of land burned prompted many insurance companies to raise premiums or pull out of California property insurance entirely. In recent years, however, the state has seen a decline in the number of wildfires and associated damage. According to data from The Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, the number of acres burned by wildfires was the lowest it has been since 2013 last year.

Is Renters Insurance in CA Worth It?

Renters insurance can certainly be a worthwhile investment in your peace of mind. It’s similar to homeowners insurance, but it excludes dwelling or structural coverage, which are covered under your landlord’s own policy.

In order to help determine whether or not it’s right for you, here are the four types of insurance coverage that a standard policy typically covers during a claim:

Personal property:This category covers either the replacement cash value (RCV) or the actual cash value (ACV) of your personal belongings after a covered loss occurs.

Liability: A personal liability claim covers anything from medical bills to legal fees if you are deemed responsible for someone else’s injury in your home. This is typically the category that is most important to landlords, since it protects them as well.

Medical payments to others:Claims under this category pay for medical payments if someone gets injured in your home through no fault of your own.

Loss of use: Also known as additional living expenses (ALE), this coverage type pays for temporary living expenses if you are displaced from your apartment. For example, if you’re forced to relocate after a damaging snow storm, your policy will cover lodging and restaurant costs up to a certain amount.

Now that you knowwhat renters insurance covers, here are some examples of events that might qualify for a claim under your policy:

  • Water leak damage
  • Someone injured in your home
  • Electrical or short-circuit damage
  • Lightning
  • Falling objects
  • Explosions
  • Theft and robbery
  • Vandalism
  • Hail, snow, or sleet
  • Wind
  • Fire and smoke
  • Earthquakes (if your policy includes this endorsem*nt)

Frequently Asked Questions about California Renters Insurance

No state legally requires renters to obtain insurance, though landlords often require proof of a policy upon lease-signing. Even when it’s not required, many renters purchase a policy to protect themselves from excessive expenses due to damage to your personal property from a covered hazard, as well as liability scenarios.

The average cost of renters insurance in California is $187 per year or $15.58 per month which is slightly higher than the national average of $15 monthly. Your actual rate will depend on a variety of factors related to both you and your rental unit.

No, standard renters insurance policies don’t cover earthquakes. If you’d like this coverage, you should add it to your policy as an endorsem*nt or purchase the coverage from the California Earthquake Authority, which can be inexpensive and worthwhile for renters in California.

College students may need renters insurance if they rent an apartment from a landlord that requires it. If you’re in school and looking for a policy, we recommendchecking out Lemonade as a top insurer for college students. You can find affordable basic coverage on your personal belongings and liability.

Although a renters insurance policy isn’t mandated by law, a California landlord can require their tenants to hold a renters insurance policy.

While there are no laws requiring renters insurance in California, a landlord can add that stipulation to their leasing agreement.

All areas of California are prone to flooding. Flood coverage is not included in a standard renters policy. However, it is is available through the federally backed National Flood Insurance Program and dozens of private flood insurers.

Related Posts in California

  • Top homeowners insurance provider in California
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  • Top pet insurance California
  • Top solar providers in California

Other Insurance Resources From MarketWatch Guides

Read our comprehensive guides on the following insurance categories to find top providers and peace of mind that you have all aspects of life covered.

  • Leading Pet Insurance Companies
  • Top Travel Insurance Companies
  • Best Homeowners Insurance Providers
  • Leading Renters Insurance Companies
  • Affordable Renters Insurance Providers
  • Top Term Life Insurance Providers
  • Budget-friendly Homeowners Insurance Companies

Methodology: Our System for Ranking the Best Renters Insurance Providers in California

Through in-depth research of the industry, we created a comprehensive rating system to rank renters insurance providers. We researched each company by gathering cost information and requesting quotes, combing through policy information, secret shopping and reading customer reviews to understand the customer service experience, and accessing financial reliability scores.

We used these rating factors to determine the best renters insurance companies to help with your decision when looking at policies:

  • Cost: 40%
  • Availability and ease of use: 25%
  • Coverage: 20%
  • Brand trust:: 15%

We routinely monitor and update data on a regular basis to ensure the reviews reflect the most up-to-date information and advice. See our full methodology here

A.M. Best Disclaimer

How We Gather Cost Data

We at the MarketWatch Guides Team gathered renters insurance quotes for the providers in this article using data from Quadrant Information Services. Quadrant is a leading source of property and casualty insurance solutions and data.

The sample renter our quotes are based on is a 30-year-old single male with good credit and no prior claims history. Our sample policies featured a $1,000 deductible and the following coverage and limits:

  • Personal property: $30,000
  • Loss of use: $9,000
  • Liability: $100,000
  • Medical payments: $1,000

For each provider, we gathered a quote for 50% of the ZIP codes in every state the provider is licensed in. We used the most populous ZIP codes for our study. We took the average of these individual quotes to calculate a national average premium per provider.

In some cases, cost data for a top renters insurance company isn’t offered in Quadrant’s database. To gather price information for these providers, we manually pulled quotes directly from insurers’ websites or representatives. We used the same sample homeowner demographics and comparable policy details for more than 20 ZIP codes across the U.S.

Our sample rates are for informational purposes only. Actual premiums will vary.

*AM Best rating accurate as of April 2024.AM Best disclaimer

If you have questions about this page, please reach out to our editors at editors@marketwatchguides.com.

Best Cheap Renters Insurance in California of April 2024 (7)

Mike MillerSenior Writer

Mike Miller is a writer with a decade of experience producing product and service content to help consumers make informed purchasing decisions. Mike has a bachelor’s degree in creative advertising. In his spare time, Mike enjoys riding and fixing motorcycles, reading a good book and spending time with his wife and two cats.

Best Cheap Renters Insurance in California of April 2024 (8)

Allie RosaEditor

Allie Rosa is an editor with experience writing and editing in home, education, thought leadership and other areas. Before joining the team, she was a senior editor working with entrepreneurs and small-business owners. Allison has a bachelor’s degree in English and holds a master’s degree from Columbia University.

Best Cheap Renters Insurance in California of April 2024 (9)

Mark FriedlanderAdvisor

Mark Friedlander is Director, Corporate Communications, at the Insurance Information Institute (Triple-I), a New York-based nonprofit research and education organization focused on providing consumers with a better understanding of insurance. Mark serves as a national spokesperson for the Triple-I, handling a wide array of insurance industry media issues. His responsibilities also include spearheading the association’s hurricane season communications strategy and its member company support and media outreach in Florida, where he is based.

Best Cheap Renters Insurance in California of April 2024 (2024)

FAQs

Best Cheap Renters Insurance in California of April 2024? ›

Which company offers the cheapest renters insurance? According to our research, State Farm and Toggle tend to offer the cheapest renters insurance policies at $10.50 and $12.59 per month, which is about 20% less the national average.

What company has the cheapest renters insurance? ›

Which company offers the cheapest renters insurance? According to our research, State Farm and Toggle tend to offer the cheapest renters insurance policies at $10.50 and $12.59 per month, which is about 20% less the national average.

What is the best renters insurance in California? ›

The best renters insurance companies in California are American Family, Mercury, Nationwide, Lemonade and USAA, according to our research. The average cost of renters insurance in California is $171 per year, according to the Insurance Information Institute (Triple-I).

What is the average cost of renters insurance in CA? ›

How much does renters insurance cost in California? The average cost of renters insurance in California is $187 per year or $15.58 per month which is slightly higher than the national average of $15 monthly.

How to decrease the cost of renters insurance? ›

How can I save on renters insurance? You may be able to lower the cost of your policy with several renters insurance discounts, such as having multiple policies with Progressive, quoting in advance, paying in full, receiving documents by mail, and living in a gated or secured community.

Is Lemonade renters insurance good? ›

Whether someone considers Lemonade renters insurance as good or not likely depends on their coverage needs. If you're a renter who does not have a significant amount of valuable personal property, Lemonade's affordable premiums and easy buying process can make it a good choice.

What is the most common renters insurance? ›

The typical renters insurance policy offers $100,000 in liability coverage. For renters, this amount is often sufficient. However, if you entertain company frequently at your home or if your assets exceed your limit, you should consider a coverage amount equal to at least the total value of your assets.

What company has the best renters insurance? ›

According to our analysis, the best renters insurance companies of April 2024 are:
  • State Farm – Best for Price.
  • Westfield – Great for Combining Auto Insurance.
  • American Family – Best for Families.
  • Auto-Owners – Best for Discounts.
  • USAA – Best for Military.
  • Allstate – Best for Renters with Poor Credit.
Apr 2, 2024

How much renters insurance should a landlord require in California? ›

According to Investopedia, most renters insurance covers: Personal possessions. Living expenses (in the case that an apartment becomes uninhabitable), and. Liability/medical insurance that typically covers $100,000 to $300,000 of damages, in case someone gets injured on the property.

Is Progressive renters insurance good? ›

Progressive earned the No. 8 spot in our rating of the best renters insurance companies. The company offers optional water backup and personal injury coverage, as well as a discount for living in a gated community – options not provided by all insurers in our rating.

Can my landlord make me get renters insurance in California? ›

Unlike some other states, California landlords are allowed to require tenants to obtain and maintain renters insurance while they are under the terms of the lease.

Why is renters insurance so expensive? ›

Insurance is all about risk, so customers that live in areas with higher risks of claims usually have to pay more for coverage. Some location-based factors that impact renters insurance rates can include: The rate of crimes, especially theft, in your ZIP code.

Is apartment insurance worth it? ›

Renters insurance coverage is almost always worth it. It is much more affordable than other policies, including home or auto insurance, and provides valuable financial protection. Even if you can save enough money to cover unexpected loss, renters insurance may be worthwhile.

What is a good deductible for renters insurance? ›

You'll choose your deductible when you buy a renters insurance policy. A higher deductible means your claims will cost you less money out of pocket. Typically, renters insurance deductibles are $500 or $1,000, but companies often provide a range of options.

Is it better to have a higher or lower deductible for renters insurance? ›

A higher renters insurance deductible may be better if you have money saved up and would prefer to lower your premiums. However, a lower deductible may be better if you would rather pay higher premiums in exchange for your insurance company covering a greater percentage of each claim.

Is it better to have a lower deductible renters insurance? ›

If you want lower out-of-pocket expenses for unexpected repairs, go with a lower deductible (and higher premium). If you prefer a lower insurance premium, choose a higher deductible, and expect to pay more when you file a claim. Learn how to get cheap homeowners insurance.

How much is renters insurance per month in Virginia? ›

Compare Renters Insurance Premiums in Virginia

Based on our list of top renters insurance companies in Virginia, average premiums range from $8.50 to $16.85 annually. The state monthly average cost of renters insurance is $11.33 which is lower than the national average of $15 per year.

Why is my renters insurance so high? ›

Insurance is all about risk, so customers that live in areas with higher risks of claims usually have to pay more for coverage. Some location-based factors that impact renters insurance rates can include: The rate of crimes, especially theft, in your ZIP code.

Is renters insurance really worth? ›

Renters insurance coverage is almost always worth it. It is much more affordable than other policies, including home or auto insurance, and provides valuable financial protection. Even if you can save enough money to cover unexpected loss, renters insurance may be worthwhile.

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