WILMINGTON -- Monday a fire destroyed a Wilmington family's home, ruining everything inside. The woman who rented the home says she didn't have renter's insurance, and now she's wondering how she will replace it all. Cynthia Howard says that could have been avoided by insuring her belongings inside her rented home on Carnation Court. The Wilmington Fire Department says the fire started in the family's entertainment center. Howard says she lost everything in it's path. "Nothing is salvageable. Everything is destroyed," Howard said, "With the help of the good Lord all I can do is pray about it." According to the Fire Department, Howard isn't alone. They say lots of renters don't protect themselves. "Ninety seven percent of the fires that involve tenant and landlord, they don't have any insurance at all," Chris Elrod, Wilmington Fire Chief, said. Insurance agents say renter's insurance is rarely ever requested, even though it's inexpensive; often around 100 dollars a year. "Renter's insurance according to some of the insurance agents i spoke to," Captain Elrod said, "is some of the cheapest insurance than any one can purchase." It's cheap, but you'll pay a high price without it. Something Howard says she wants other renters to know. "I would advise anyone that living and renting a home to get insurance," Howard said. Howard also says while she isn't sure how she'll replace everything, her most precious possessions escaped the fire unharmed. "I feel better than I did yesterday knowing that my kids got out OK." The Red Cross helped Howard, and her family, find a place to stay for three days.
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