Top tips covering landlords insurance

If you are in the process of starting to let out property for the first time, you may find the following tips to be useful when you are considering landlords insurance:

  • remember the principles – typically, if you are using property for the purposes of generating rental income then you are a landlord and will typically require let property insurance rather than owner-occupier cover;
  • do not be misled by rumour and myth – in the event that you had to make a claim, contrary to what some may believe, insurance providers may have sophisticated means of checking the exact occupancy situation of the property concerned. If they find that you have owner-occupier cover for property that has tenants in it (even if they only occupy a part of your property) then you may find your claim is refused;
  • think carefully about your requirements – for example, if you are letting out your property on an unfurnished basis then there may be no obvious reason why you should be paying for buildings and contents insurance when perhaps a buildings only policy may be perfectly adequate;
  • shop around for your landlords insurance – different providers of this type of insurance may have very different elements of cover in their policies and their pricing structures may also be significantly different, with some perhaps being more suitable for you than others;
  • think about tenants/1 – some policies may offer cover against malicious damage caused by your tenants though this is by no means universal in all such policies;
  • think about tenants/2 – remember that if you are successfully sued for damages arising from injuries to one of your tenants, then a court may award very significant sums against you, so having a healthy provision for third party liability cover in your policy may be highly advisable;
  • think about tenants/3 – some policies may offer cover for a loss of rental income if your tenants are forced to move out due to a problem arising which is an insured risk on your policy;
  • do not forget subsidence – the costs associated with serious subsidence problems may be potentially ruinous if you need to pay them out of your own pocket, which is why those policies that provide subsidence cover may prove to be very attractive. Although once commonplace in property policies, it is no longer necessarily always included as standard on all policies providing landlords insurance or owner-occupier home buildings and contents cover.