Some top tips for landlord insurance

November 26, 2011

Landlords Insurance

If you are thinking about landlord insurance, you may find the following points useful;

 

  • do not be misled into thinking that you will be able to get by with owner-occupier home buildings and contents insurance cover – that form of property and contents insurance typically becomes invalid (or is inapplicable to begin with) the moment you start to obtain rental income from any property you own;

 

  • do your research thoroughly and look at a number of options for landlord insurance – policies and the cover they provide may differ significantly from one to another and not all may be equally suitable for your particular situation;

 

  • if you have several properties that you currently use to generate rental income, consider a property portfolio insurance option – it may be possible to cover your properties on one multi-property policy and this may lead to benefits in terms of cost-effectiveness and administrative simplicity;

 

  • look carefully at the policy’s added cover benefits – you may be able to anticipate that a policy will typically cover buildings, contents and third party liability, however, some policies may also offer additional cover in areas such as the loss of rental income that may arise should your tenants be forced to move out of your property whilst you undertake repairs etc;

 

  • periodically review your cover – both your situation as a landlord and the market position with respect to available options may change over time, therefore, it may make sense to periodically sit down and review any existing cover you may have against alternative options;

 

  • recognise that unoccupied property is different – typical standard insurance for landlords may not provide cover for properties that sit unoccupied for periods greater than 30-90 days (variable by policy and circumstances), so, if you think your property may become unoccupied for an extended period, you may wish to investigate what is called unoccupied property insurance;

 

  • remember to comply with legislation – a landlord insurance policy may typically require that your property conforms to all prevailing local and national safety regulations (e.g. gas inspection laws for rental properties) and if you fail to do so, you may put your insurance cover at risk.
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