Landlord Insurance

What is landlord insurance?

It’s a type of insurance specifically for buy-to-let landlords, which provides different levels of cover depending on what is required. Most mortgage providers will make it compulsory for a landlord to take out building insurance, but other types of insurance, such as rent guarantee or legal cover are optional.

What is Landlord Buildings insurance?

This is a type of landlord insurance that is usually compulsory, but you should check with your mortgage or loan provider as to conditions. This type of insurance covers your property for loss or damage such as:

  • Fire or smoke damage
  • Theft or vandalism
  • Natural disasters (i.e. storm or earthquake)
  • Burst pipes
  • Oil or water leakage

One of the most important covers with this type of insurance is for Property Owner’s Liability. This is usually included as a standard with Buildings Insurance but it’s best to check the conditions of your cover. Owner’s Liability Insurance means that you are covered should your tenant, or a guest or visitor (even a burglar!), be injured on your property. If someone was hurt to the point they couldn’t work or needed extensive medical treatment, this insurance would come in very handy.

What is Landlord Contents insurance?

This insurance covers fire damage and theft of your buy-to-let property’s contents, but will depend on whether you let it furnished or unfurnished. Contents covered under this include furniture, kitchen equipment, curtains and carpets. You can also add an additional level of cover for accidental damage. This cover is only for contents you have provided in the let, it does not cover tenants’ contents and you should advise them to take out their own policy.

What is landlord portfolio insurance?

This insurance is for portfolio landlords with 5 or more properties. By insuring several properties on the same policy, it can save you money compared to insuring individually and you can set the same renewal date- which will help save you time on paperwork!

What is landlord legal cover?

This type of cover can be added to Building insurance policies and covers you for legal protection should you experience the following:

  • Property damage
  • Nuisance or trespass
  • Accommodation costs
  • Repossession
  • Recovery of rent arrears

Whilst this can be added to Buildings insurance cover, it’s often included in rent guarantee insurance so ensure you’re not paying for the same cover twice if you have separate policies for different insurance types.

What is landlord home emergency cover?

This cover is usually offered as an add-on to Buildings and/or Contents insurance. It protects your property and tenants against the loss of essential services 24/7, such as:

  • Securing doors/ windows
  • Drains and sewers
  • Pest infestation
  • Plumbing repairs
  • Heating repairs
  • Boiler breakdown
  • Lost keys

What is rent protection / guarantee insurance?

Rent protection, also known as rent guarantee, insurance covers missed rent payments if your tenant is unable to pay. The best-case scenario is that your tenant is having only short-term financial difficulties, which means with rent guarantee insurance you’ll still be able to make mortgage payments until they are able to start paying again, plus work out a payment plan for the missed rent. The worst-case scenario is that they are unable to pay and they will need to be evicted under Section 8 notice of possession. Most rent protection policies will cover the cost of eviction as well.

Do I need landlord insurance?

If you have a buy-to-let property then your mortgage or loan provider may require you to take out certain insurance policies. Other insurance covers are optional but some are highly recommended, such as rent guarantee insurance in case your tenant defaults on rent. Others may not be so relevant or seem expensive, but you can shop around for the best deals and many policies include optional extras within the fee.

How much cover do I need for landlord insurance?

This will depend on how many properties you let out, whether you self-manage and any conditions that your mortgage provider has set out in relation to the loan. Every landlord should have Buildings insurance as a standard but if you’re letting an unfurnished property, you may decide not to take out contents insurance. Likewise, if you live near the property and handle repairs yourself, you may decide home emergency insurance isn’t necessary either- although it’s recommended to have some 24-hour emergency contacts on hand.

Will my landlord insurance cover my tenants too?

Landlord contents insurance doesn’t cover tenants’ contents. You should advise them to take out an insurance policy, which are often at very low monthly costs, to cover loss or theft of their own possessions. Buildings insurance usually covers temporary accommodation for tenants if the damage means the property is uninhabitable.

How much does landlord insurance cost?

Rates vary depending on location, value of the property, level of cover and many other factors. You can use a price comparison site to shop around for the best deals. If you have a few properties, it might be worth contacting a broker to discuss your requirements and get the best offer. You’ll also need to be aware of any excesses you might pay in the event of a claim. The monthly cost of insurance may be low, but if you have to pay out £100’s of pounds in excesses, it may outweigh the benefits.

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