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Personal Insurance > Home & Property Insurance > Tenant Insurance

Tenant Insurance

Tenants need insurance too. We can help make sure you're properly protected.

Whether you rent an apartment, a condo unit, or a home, as a tenant, you share some of the same insurance needs—and potential liabilities—as a homeowner. At RBC Insurance®, we can help you understand and find the coverage that is right for you.

How tenant insurance protects you

While your landlord most likely has property insurance on the actual building in which you live, your landlord's policy does not provide financial protection for your personal belongings, upgrades you have made to the home/unit, or your own personal liability to others. Below is an overview of how tenant insurance protects you and tips to keep in mind when considering your coverage options.


You are on: Your personal belongings

Protection for the personal belongings in your rental

As mentioned above, your landlord's property insurance does not cover your personal belongings such as furniture, televisions, computers, clothes, jewellery, etc.

For example, if lightning struck your apartment building and your unit caught fire and all of your personal belongings were ruined, you would be financially responsible for replacing or repairing all of your belongings—your landlord's insurance policy would only pay for repairs to fix the actual apartment building and unit itself.

How much coverage do you need?

The amount of personal belongings coverage you choose should reflect what it would cost to repurchase everything you currently have as personal belongings inside your home. If you're not sure, itemize all of your belongings, room by room. Apply an approximate amount to each item and then total these amounts.

You also need to decide whether to protect your personal belongings against All Perils or Specified Perils:

  • All Perils coverage protects your personal belongings against the widest range of risks and only excludes the perils specifically listed in your policy. (The Enhanced Plus plan provides the most comprehensive perils coverage.)
  • Specified Perils coverage protects your personal belongings against the most common risks, which will be listed in your policy. Examples of common perils include: fire and lightning; falling objects; water escape, rupture and freezing; smoke; windstorm or hail; vandalism and more.

Another thing to keep in mind is that some personal items, like jewellery or computer software, also have special coverage limits (opens new window). If these limits do not protect your possessions, you may be able to "schedule" them separately on your policy to increase your protection.



  • If you have some very valuable items like jewellery, artwork, etc., ask us about scheduling them separately on your policy to increase your protection.
  • Photograph or videotape all your belongings and keep a record of serial numbers and receipts where applicable in a secure location (such as a safety deposit box.) If you ever make a claim, your visual record of the missing or damaged items will make the process much easier.
  • Update your personal belongings inventory at least once a year.

You are on: Upgrades to your rental

Protection for improvements and betterments to your rental

Like your personal belongings, your landlord's property insurance will not cover any upgrades you have made to your rental—such as better carpets, high-end light fixtures or built-in cupboards. With your tenant insurance policy, however, tenant's improvements and betterments coverage comes standard and provides protection up to a specified dollar amount.

All improvements and betterments you make to your rental are covered for the same perils that your personal belongings are insured against—either All Perils or Specified Perils.



  • If you make upgrades to your rental unit, be sure to advise your insurance company of the renovations to ensure you are properly covered.
  • Be sure to keep receipts and proof of all upgrades you have made to your rental in a secure location (such as a safety deposit box.)

You are on: Additional living expenses

Compensation for additional living expenses

If you cannot live in your rental while repairs are being made after an insured loss, your tenant insurance will also help to cover some of your additional living expenses, such as moving costs, a hotel room, restaurant meals, storage and more.

There are three circumstances that may entitle you to this coverage:

  • If your unit is considered unfit to live in due to an insured peril and you have to move out while the damage is being repaired, your plan will cover necessary and reasonable additional living expenses.
  • If you are denied access to your unit by the police, fire department or other civil authority because of damage to a neighbouring premises, your plan will cover a necessary and reasonable increase in living expenses for up to two weeks.
  • If you sub-let part of your rental home or unit to another tenant and he or she is forced to leave because of an insured loss, your plan will reimburse your full rental value while the repairs are being made.

You are on: Accidental damage or injury to others

Protection for accidental damage or injury to others

Having liability coverage is critical when you are a tenant. That's because you are responsible for any damage you cause to any part of the building in which you live and for any injury or harm you cause to others living in or visiting the building.

The liability coverage provided under your tenant insurance policy protects you financially if you unintentionally cause property damage or bodily injury to others—while inside the building where you live or anywhere in the world. For example:

  • You forget that you have food in the toaster oven, and it catches fire, damaging your apartment and part of your neighbour's apartment as well. (Your neighbour's and landlord's insurance companies may cover these damages but will still come to you to seek reimbursement.)
  • Your housekeeper slips on a spill on your kitchen floor and injures her back.
  • You throw a baseball on the beach while on vacation in Florida and you accidentally knock out a bystander's tooth.

Liability coverage helps protect you whether someone sues you or not:

  • Your policy will pay for property damage or personal injury you unintentionally cause even if you are not legally liable.
  • If someone does sue you due to injury or property damage covered by your policy, your insurance company will defend you against the suit and cover the costs associated with your defence.


It’s a good idea to purchase as much liability coverage as you can afford—we recommend at least $1 million in coverage and offer up to $2 million in coverage.


Note: The information above is a summary only and does not include all terms, conditions, limits and exclusions.


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