Before you move in to an apartment, you should protect yourself from floods and other damage inflictors such as fire and theft, by purchasing renters insurance. It is relatively cheap, depending on your selected policy, and will cover damages and replacements of items in your apartment (and your car). Unlike most other types of insurance, renters is not required by law. However, it is highly recommended and many landlords require it to move into their properties.

Protect yourself from flooding by first noticing and reporting any leaks resulting from rain or an appliance. Insist that the problem is addressed quickly, and follow up by ensuring that the leak does not occur again with the next rain, appliance use. Also be sure to check ceilings for leaks, as water can often spill out of higher apartments and leak into yours.

If flooding from rain begins unexpectedly or an appliance in either your apartment or a neighbor’s breaks and begins to leak or flood, immediately move all items away from the water. Move any transportable values, such as computers, to your car, a neighbor or friend’s house or at least another room. Also, call the office and inform a manager of the issue immediately. If you can seal leaks, do so, and try to contain the water with plastic bins or barriers.

When it is time to fix the damage, landlord insurance will usually cover the building itself, including the carpet and provided appliances. Your renters insurance will typically cover damages to your personal property, as long as flooding is included in your policy. However, if you have previously informed your landlord or apartment manager of a leakage or risk for flooding and no action was taken, the complex may be responsible for covering your personal property as well as structural damage.

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