You have a property you rent out but you don’t know what insurance you need. Will your usual home insurance policy do? This guide will help you out.
Your normal home insurance policy is designed for home owners not landlords. As a landlord you have other things to worry about, such as:
If you only have a standard home insurance policy, you may be breaking the terms of your mortgage. Make sure you check with your mortgage company what insurance you need.
A traditional home insurance policy will offer buildings cover but make sure you check with your insurance provider if it’s ok if you rent out the property. You also need to make sure you get the right level of cover. Here is a little guide on how to work it out.
If you do, then chances are you will need landlord contents cover. Most home insurance policies will not provide cover for contents if a tenant damages something. A landlord policy will provide cover for the cost of replacing or repairing these items. When buying your cover make sure you check how much cover is offered as standard, you can usually add more cover if you need it.
Remember you are not responsible for your tenant’s belongings but it would be worthwhile letting them know, as they will need to get their own cover.
Accidental damage cover is either offered as standard or as an option on most landlord policies. Most home insurance providers will not provide cover if tenants have an accident. For example, if you or your tenants accidentally smash a window or drop something and it cracks a sink, accidental damage cover will cover you.
Say if a tenant were to fall down the stairs because you had not maintained them properly, they could take legal action against you. Property Owners Liability cover will provide you with cover if your tenants decide to pursue legal action for any injuries, medical expenses or loss of earnings If you decide you need cover, you also need to think about what level of cover is right for you. For example, if you have tenants who earn a lot and they sued you for loss of earnings, the damages awarded to them could be high.
A lot of landlord’s don’t think they need employers' liability cover as they don’t have a team of people employed to work on their property. If you do employ people on a casual or volunteer basis such as a cleaner, handyman or gardener you will probably need cover. If, for example, they injured themselves on your property due to it being poorly maintained they could seek compensation. Employers' liability cover will provide you with cover for any legal costs and compensation claims.
It’s a good idea to choose a landlord insurance policy that covers for loss of rent. This will cover your lost rental income if your tenants can’t stay at your property after an insured event such as damage from a flood. Some policies also cover the cost of alternative accommodation for your tenants if they have to move out of the property.
If you are faced with unexpected legal costs, such as contract disputes, debt recovery and evicting squatters, then legal expenses cover could help.
If your property is likely to be unoccupied from time to time? Make sure you check with your insurance providers to see if you are covered.
To provide this service we work with Arthur J. Gallagher Insurance Brokers Limited, one of the UK’s largest insurance brokers.