If you are putting your home up for rent, renting out your beach house, or considering listing a room on Airbnb, you need to look at your homeowner’s policy. A regular homeowner’s policy is generally not set up to cover losses in a rental situation; in these cases, you need to look at more specialized insurance, like a Landlord Policy.
At Propman Property Management, we recommend that our homeowner clients acquire Landlord Insurance. We also require that their tenants be covered by personal property insurance, or Renter’s Insurance.
It is best to speak to your insurance professional about your unique situation. He or she can cover the distinctions between policies and coverage. Here are some of the potential situations in which you would need Landlord Insurance:
For rental of your home or your vacation property for a period of time longer than six months, or if you do not live in the same home as your tenants, you should have a landlord or rental policy. These policies may cost up to 25% more than your standard homeowner’s policy (generally only a couple of hundred dollars per year), however, they provide property insurance for personal property you have left on site, such as your lawnmower and appliances, as well as physical damage to the home’s structure normally covered. Most also cover the loss of rental income during a specified repair period from a covered loss.
In addition, Landlord Insurance also provides liability coverage that covers medical and legal expenses in case someone is hurt while on your property.
For short-term rentals, such as a couple of weekends or weeks, most insurance companies may allow your existing homeowner’s policy to cover the rental. However, you must notify your insurance company in advance of the rental, who will then provide you with a rider to your existing policy.
If these short-term rentals become more than occasional, your rentals could be considered a business, under which circumstances standard policies do not provide coverage. In this case you would need to purchase a business insurance policy, such as those offered to hotels or bed and breakfast establishments.
In all cases, your homeowner’s, landlord or business policies cover only the structure itself. Personal possessions held by your tenants are not included in your policy. You should, as Propman does, require your tenants to provide proof of Renter’s Insurance before signing the lease.
Propman is Here to Answer your Questions
Our professionals at Propman Property Management are always available to answer any questions you might have about rentals or the rental market in Northern Virginia. Before you rent, call us.
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