Your personal items are not protected from theft, vandalism, fire, or water damage under the property owner's insurance. Repeat: your landlord is NOT responsible for damage to YOUR personal property. A burst water pipe or smoke from a fire in another apartment are just two examples of minor incidents that can lead to major property damage.
To protect your belongings, you may need to purchase renter's insurance. Renter’s insurance covers personal property, which is damaged by fire, smoke, vandalism, water and hail and windstorms. Renter's insurance is usually very inexpensive-sometimes less than $100 per year-and can be obtained through any insurance agent. When you sign up for renter's insurance, be sure to ask for the clause that indicates "replacement value." Many policies cover only "actual cost" value, which means that if the computer you bought three years ago is damaged or stolen you will only be able to collect for the value of a three-year-old computer, not the cost of a new one. Renter's insurance also may pay for temporary living expenses if your apartment is damaged or destroyed. It may also provide liability coverage in case anyone is injured in your apartment.
If you are a full-time student (and ONLY if you are full-time) you may have some limited coverage under your parents' homeowners insurance. You or your parents should check with the agency that provides their coverage to see the amount of coverage you will have (if any) for your possessions while you are living away from home. Renter’s insurance is a policy that provides protection and compensation for your personal property if it is destroyed or stolen.
With most policies, each tenant of an apartment must have their own renter’s insurance policy.