Letting out property to tenants can be a highly lucrative way to earn an additional income or even a full-time living. But in order to protect your considerable investment, you need to make certain that you have the correct insurance at a level that will fully cover your property or properties.
Why you need landlord insurance
The most obvious reason for having landlord insurance is to protect your investment in the building. Landlord, or buy to let insurance, will cover your premises in the event of a fire or other incident in which the house is damaged or even destroyed.
It’s important to realise that standard home insurance will not cover any property that you are renting out and that if you fail to implement a specialist landlord insurance policy then it is likely that your insurance will be automatically voided in the event of a claim.
Legal responsibilities of landlords
The government also puts certain legal responsibilities upon landlords, which must be adhered to when renting out a property. These include:
- Keeping the property safe and free from health-related hazards
- Ensuring that gas and electrical equipment are safe and properly maintained
- Fitting smoke/ carbon monoxide alarms and testing regularly
- Following appropriate fire safety regulations
As far as landlord insurance is concerned, these responsibilities come into play in a number of ways. Firstly, if you are required to take remedial action due to an accident or other incident, your insurance policy may cover the costs. Secondly, if you fail to adhere to these requirements and your tenants or the council seek to take legal action against you, the right landlord insurance may cover your costs and any compensation awarded against you.
Protecting your property
Just as importantly, your insurance will protect your investment from your tenants. Some tenants can be wilfully destructive, while others can merely cause accidental damage to the property through ignorance or sheer bad luck. A robust buy to let insurance policy will cover you against all kinds of damage or disruption that they might inflict upon your property.
What does landlord insurance include?
Your buy to let insurance can be tailored to cover you for the things that you feel are most important. These include:
Building insurance – This is the most basic level of landlord insurance cover, and will pay out in the event of damage to the physical building itself.
Landlord’s content insurance – If you are offering a fully furnished house or flat for rent then you need to protect your furniture and other items from damage that may occur by accident or as a result of your tenants’ actions.
Legal protection – This will protect you in the event that legal proceedings are brought against you by a tenant.
Loss of rent insurance – If your property is damaged or becomes unliveable for a period of time then you stand to lose a considerable amount of rental income. Landlord insurance can cover you for these periods so that you’re not out of pocket.
To find out more or get a quote for your landlord insurance, get in touch with our specialist team of insurance advisors.