Tag Archives: landlord insurance

What’s included in the cheapest landlord insurance quote?

If you are searching for the cheapest landlord insurance quote, you may be concerned whether the cover provided is sufficient for your needs. If that is a worry, therefore, you might wish to consider some of the following observations:

  • cheap is a relative term – what might appear to be the cheapest landlord insurance quote for you might be less so for someone else;
  • much depends, of course, on what you need the insurance to cover and the circumstances surrounding your particular ability to pay the necessary premiums;
  • if price is a factor influencing your choice of insurance provider, therefore, you may wish to pay special intention to exactly what landlord cover you need;
  • in other words, you may wish to avoid certain policies that include in their standard provisions cover which you do not, or are unlikely to, need – otherwise you may end up paying more than may be needed for unnecessary aspects of cover;
  • for example, you may want to ensure that your buy to let property is adequately protected against the major perils of fire and smoke damage, flooding, impacts from vehicles or falling debris, storm damage and vandalism, but is there any risk of subsidence affecting the building?
  • not all let property insurance (or owner-occupied home buildings insurance for that matter) automatically include cover against such a risk;
  • whilst paring down the cover you need to the barest essentials might be a way of making some savings, you might want to make sure that you do not overlook other items that might prove critically useful;
  • by way of example, there may be times when your property inevitably remains vacant (between change-overs of tenancy, say), when special provision may need to be made for the continuation of adequate cover. In that case, you may wish to seek out a separate unoccupied property insurance quote;
  • although a useful way of finding the cheapest landlord insurance quote might be to exclude all those items of cover which no not apply in your particular circumstances, therefore, you may still wish to ensure that adequate landlords cover on your property is maintained at all times.

Making a landlord insurance comparison

Making a landlord insurance comparison is likely to involve similar choices to those you make when comparing other forms of insurance, namely:

  • do the policies you are comparing offer the cover you need at a competitive rate;
  • do they include every aspect of landlords protection you might need, yet also exclude elements you are unlikely to need (and therefore have no reason to pay for);
  • your landlord insurance comparison might also take into account those elements of any given policy that are included as standard features;
  • if there is cover you need to buy as an additional option, of course, this might increase the overall cost of your insurance;
  • an example might be compensation offered by an insurer for loss of rental income following an insured event which leaves your property unable to be let for a while. Some policies – but by no means all – provide a degree of compensation (up to prescribed limits) for such loss of rental income;
  • perhaps more important – and a potentially more serious and costly risk – relates to the building insurance on your property and the peril of subsidence. Some landlord insurance policies (just as some home buildings and contents insurance policies for private residences) specifically exclude this risk and you may need to buy it as an add-on. Some landlord policies, however, include it as a standard item of cover;
  • if you own buy to let property – or, indeed, if you are an owner-occupier – there may be occasions when the premises are left empty and unoccupied. Your tenants may have vacated, for example, and you face a delay of more than 30 days (45 days in some cases) in agreeing a new tenancy. In that case you may also be looking for an unoccupied insurance quote to ensure that adequate cover remains on your property during the time that it is empty;
  • as a landlord, you may face the risk of tenants causing malicious damage to your property or the contents which you own. Some buy to let insurance policies include protection against such risks as a standard feature, whilst others may offer it as an additional option (at additional cost);
  • if price is a consideration in making your landlord insurance comparison, you might wish to choose a policy which offers a wide range of options with respect to any voluntary excess you may care to bear. Typically, the higher the excess you take on, then in some cases, the lower the premiums you have to pay.

The key concepts of insurance for landlords

There are a few key ideas arising in the area of insurance for landlords that may be worth getting to grips with if you are or are about to become, a landlord:

  • if you obtain income from letting out property or part of your own property, then you are a landlord;
  • properties that are being used for the purposes of generating income typically cannot be covered by owner-occupier buildings and contents insurance;
  • it may be possible to use only buildings insurance in situations where your property is being let on an unfurnished basis, however, it might be prudent to check to make sure that everything you believe to be a fitting (thereby theoretically covered by the buildings insurance) is also so seen by the insurer;
  • to decide what is the best landlord insurance for you, may require a little effort in terms of comparing a number of quotations – remembering that something that you have heard is the best, may be the best for another landlord but might not prove to be so for you;
  • some landlords insurance may offer considerably more than simply buildings and contents cover, for example, some policies may include things such as rental income protection, malicious damage by tenants and elements of legal fees protection (qualifying conditions may, as you would expect, apply in all cases);
  • landlord insurance (and the same may also be true for owner-occupier home buildings and contents insurance cover) may not cover a property that remains unoccupied for more than a specified number of days and if you believe your property may exceed the specified limit, you may wish to make inquiries regarding unoccupied property insurance;
  • in cases where you have taken out a buy to let mortgage, you may wish to note that your mortgage agreement may require you to maintain appropriate insurance in place, at all times, covering the full rebuilding costs of the property concerned – in effect, that may necessitate you having formal insurance for landlords unless you wish to risk being in breach of your mortgage contract.

Let property insurance – commonly asked questions

The following questions are frequently asked with respect to let property insurance.

Is it required if I have a flat in a larger block?

Typically, yes, it is.

Just as if you were an owner-occupier in a flat or apartment, it may be advisable to have buildings and contents insurance for your property.

In some cases there may be common shared elements of insurance across a split property, nevertheless, if you are using your property for the purposes of income then you will need to ensure that your own cover (and any shared cover components) explicitly covers landlord properties.

What about if I only rent out my property for a few weeks per year?

It may be advisable to read your own policy for certainty, however; typically any use of your property for commercial purposes (including rental income generation) may require let property insurance in order to ensure that your buildings and contents insurance protection remains effective.

Supposing I am only renting out a couple of rooms and still occupy the property as my own residence?

Typically, such a situation may make no difference – though again, it may be useful to consult your policy to be sure.

Ordinary owner-occupier home buildings and contents insurance may be put at risk if you start to rent out sections of your own home.

Does landlords buildings insurance cover me for subsidence?

Some policies may do so but this is no longer something that you can assume to be a given, as may have been the case in previous decades.

Given the potentially catastrophic costs of rectifying a subsidence problem, it might be a good idea to search for landlords cover that does provide protection in these circumstances.

Will buy to let insurance cover unpaid rent arrears if tenants abscond?

That may be rather unlikely. Classic landlord insurance may also not cover you if you become embroiled in a legal battle trying to force eviction.

On the plus side, some let property insurance policies may cover you for wilful damage caused by tenants etc. The cover may also extend to third party liability damages awarded against you by a court.

Taking Out Landlords Insurance

Getting landlords insurance quotes may be necessary if you have a buy to let property.

The reason for that is clear.

Your house is being used for commercial purposes – the generation of rental income. That means that ordinary owner-occupier home buildings and contents protection simply will not apply to your circumstances due to the very different risk profiles involved in the two property types.

In fact, if you change the residency status of an existing owner-occupied property to rented out, any existing insurance may become immediately invalid. That may perhaps apply even if you have started renting out only a single room and you continue to occupy the rest yourself.

That’s why whether you’re purchasing a buy to let house or are simply planning to change the use of your own residential property, it is highly advisable to consider the insurance implications and obtain some landlords insurance quotes.

Some things that may very well be worth thinking about when you do so are:

  • does the policy cover subsidence as standard (increasing numbers may not);
  • does it give new-for-old or market value replacement of contents;
  • take into consideration the level of insurance that is offered by way of third party insurance;
  • does it deliver legal cover in the event of troubles such as being sued for third party damage etc (such cover is typically only provided for insured perils so legal action to evict tenants will typically not be covered);
  • does it cover malicious damage by tenants (not all let property insurance policies cover this); etc.

Of course, the price will be a account but given the likely size of your financial investment in your property, being driven exclusively by the desire to find the cheapest landlords insurance may not be advisable.

It is importnant to check out the terms of the cover as this often differs between providers. What’s best for one landlord will probably not be best for you.

if you are a landlord you might also want to avoid trying to use cover for owner occupied homes. In the event of a claim, insurers are typically able to establish the exact occupancy status of a property and you may find your claim rejected and you may be listed as someone that makes false insurance declarations and claims.

Landlords insurance quotes are typically easy to obtain and they may indicate just how much protection you can achieve for a relatively modest price.