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yeah, but the problem is that you have to worry about shit you rent. Really, you have to worry about it more than shit you own. My stuff is, well, mine, and nobody else will give me trouble if I destroy it.

Rented stuff belongs to someone else. I need to take due care, and if I do happen to break it, I usually have to pay more than what getting the equivalent thing off craigslist would cost me.

Also, when you rent, you usually commit to renting for a certain number of months (or sometimes years) - in many ways a lease is much less flexible than owning, because I can't sublet, and I can't force the landlord to lower the price, so if I want to leave, and the market prices of the rental is lower than what I paid for it, I'm potentially on the hook to pay off not only the difference between market value then and market value now, but instead the entire value of the lease.

That is what insurance is for.

yeah... but, for example, buying insurance on your rental car doubles it's cost. And getting anything out of insurance is such a hassle. If I had a nice new leased car and my brother put a dent in it learning to drive, I'd have to deal with it. even if it didn't jack up my insurance premiums, which it would, dealing with a little dent is probably going to cost you at least 5 hours. But the thing is, I don't rent; I own a jalopy. so the kid put a dent in it... so what? It wasn't the first dent, and won't be the last dent. Driving a car that is worth a weeks pay is a much lower stress experience, for me, at least, than driving a car that is half of a year's post-tax earnings. Sure, the thing will die one of these days. but who cares? Push the thing to the side of the road and call a cab and a wrecker to haul it off to the junkyard. borrow a friends car (because I'm free with loaning my jalopy, I have some credit) or rent until I find my next jalopy. It's been pretty good for the time I've had it.

Another example; a while back I stepped on my thinkpad. Now, being a 200lb guy, the monitor cracked. Will insurance cover "A fat man stepped on it?" If they do, they'd probably pay retail to replace it (lenovo wanted $700 to fix it, and that'd be factored into premiums.) I think I ended up paying $80 for a new LCD and spent two hours installing it. Probably less hassle than dealing with insurance would have been.

Insurance is best for risks that are beyond your capability to deal with... Usually for small things, it's cheaper, long term, to deal with it yourself. And unless you /enjoy/ bureaucracy, it's usually less work, too.

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