Tenants of rental properties could be falling foul of their lease conditions when it comes to taking out the right insurance cover.

A survey of 1,000 tenants across the UK was carried out by Nationwide, and the results showed that only around half have any contents insurance in place.

And now, Martin Pitchford, has said that the 48% of tenants without cover was the equivalent of just over 2.1m households across the UK.

“Many renters are under the misapprehension that it’s the landlord’s responsibility to arrange contents insurance, and others avoid taking out cover because of the cost in an attempt to bring down their monthly outgoings.

“But in fact, this haphazard approach to insurance could leave many tenants in breach of their tenancy agreements even though a large percentage of renters said they didn’t know whether cover was required as part of their lease agreement or not.”

Martin said in recent months, landlords had started to clamp down on tenants and a large majority were now asking to see proof of contents insurance before they allowed a tenancy contract to be signed.

“It’s very worrying that so many tenants don’t have this cover in place and that such a large percentage believe their landlord would have to arrange cover to protect their belongings if they were lost, stolen or damaged.

“It can be easy to dismiss contents insurance as unnecessary, particularly if you are renting a partially furnished property. But the value of your own possessions can be deceiving. If you have a television, laptop and phone, these three items alone could run into four figures.

“And your contents are your sole responsibility – nothing to do with your landlord – so it’s up to each tenant to make sure they’re covered by the right kind of policy.

“Don’t think that skipping insurance will save you money either: it may seem like a cost you could do without initially, but in the long term, not having cover in place could cost you far more.”