Self-storage units are becoming more popular among Americans because people do not have enough room and space to store their possessions safely and securely.

Right now 10.8 million Americans make use of a storage facilities which comes out to one in every ten households. If you are one of those people looking into a self-storage unit, there are specific insurance needs that need to be taken care of to protect you from damaged goods.

When it comes to protecting your things, storage units do a great job. The units are locked up from an outside gate with high walls, and often have strong and heavily guarded doors. The units are typically well built, with cameras and barbed wire fences prohibiting theft and destruction.

However, these units are not full proof. Your items inside the unit still need to be covered by a form of insurance.

You Will Need and Can Receive Self-Storage Protection From:

  • Fire
  • Theft
  • Hurricane
  • Tornado
  • Wind
  • Hail
  • Lightning
  • Leaking water
  • Smoke
  • Earthquake

It is worth noting that this list does not cover flood insurance. That is usually purchased separately. These types of exceptions are worth keeping note of as floods are quite common and can do a great deal of damage.

Should I Purchase Self-Storage Insurance Coverage?

Self-storage companies will often require proof of insurance that all or most items stored will be covered.

It can be covered in a few different ways. The first option is to check and see if your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy extends to your items that are stored outside of your home or apartment. If covered, you can prove your insurance to the storage company to save from purchasing an additional policy. To see if your policy extends to self-storage, contact your insurance company directly.

If it doesn’t cover your storage items, it may be cheaper to extend your current homeowner’s insurance or renters insurance, as opposed to buying a new storage insurance policy. For a higher cost rate of course, the storage facility essentially becomes the second location of your possessions.

You need to be wary though that your insurance policy from your homeowner’s insurance may have limitations for covering items offsite. Items in a storage unit may only cover up to 10 percent of the policy limit under home insurance. If your policy is for $100,000, then your insurer would pay for $10,000 worth of damages. If you need more insurance to cover the extra items in your storage unit, look below for further self-storage unit options.

Specific Self-Storage Insurance

If you know that your current possessions are worth more than 10 percent of your homeowner’s policy or you don’t have a renter’s or home insurance, you are going to want to purchase self-storage unit insurance to cover your items.

Storage facilities have made it easy to buy directly from them and offer their own form of insurance. These options offer the minimum basic essentials, and usually cover around $2,500-$5,000. For those with items more expensive than that, purchasing an external self-storage insurance policy may be the way to go.

The third option is look into an independent self-storage insurer. This is a tailored insurance plan that typically has a higher coverage amount. For those will expensive items, this plan can cover up to $15,000-$20,000 in damages. The monthly cost of these policies range from an average of $20-$30.

Purchasing an external self-storage insurance may be the way to go if you aren’t covered by homeowner’s or renter’s and need more than a basic form of insurance to cover all your items. A specific self-storage insurance covers hazards that are tailored to the possible encounters related to self-storage units. This makes is easier to file claims if something does happen.

It is also worth noting, that certain items may not be covered under a self-storage insurance policy. Certain items such as furs, jewelry, collectable art, watches, antiques, securities are more prone to damage, and are expensive to replace.

Similarly, some possessions have limited coverage under a home insurance policy. To protect your more expensive items, you will need to purchase an additional floater insurance policy. For example, jewelry is only covered up to $1500 in which the floater policy would cover the item if lost or damaged.

Final Thoughts

Self-storage insurance is a great idea if want that extra bit of coverage and protection for your stuff. If you don’t have a renter’s or homeowner’s insurance, purchasing it would be the best course of action as the tailored coverages will be specific to the self-storage unit, saving you money.

If you want bare minimum coverage, purchasing a specific self-storage insurance from your storage company is the way to go. If you already own a homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, recommends extending your coverage for storage facilities as it will be a better deal. It costs you more, but you policy will be extended to cover items that are not just inside your home.

Ultimately, it is your decision and a balancing act on how much you are willing to pay to protect your things.