For those who have property to rent out, there is potential to make a considerable income from being a landlord.
However, when things go wrong, it can be an expensive bill. While landlord insurance is not compulsory, it can be valuable to have, to prevent you from losing a vast amount of rental income and to cover unwelcome expenses.
If you’re considering taking out landlord insurance, then follow our guide for four quick steps to landlord insurance comparison and how to get the best deal for your needs.
Four quick steps for landlord insurance comparison
- Make sure you are searching for the right insurance
Landlord insurance can cover a range of ventures. Landlord insurance may be used commercially when letting out shops or business premises. Alternatively, landlord insurance could also include short-term renting such as home letting, or systems like Airbnb. Some landlord insurance policies might only cover you if renting out residential property to tenants for longer than six months.
With landlord insurance covering a range of options, it is essential that you start by comparing the right insurance for your needs. If you choose the wrong type of landlord insurance, then you may not be covered when you make a claim. It may be wise to speak to an agent at Compare Insurance who can understand your exact needs for landlord insurance and can help to make sure that you are looking at the right type of landlord insurance for your needs.
- Know what you need
Many aspects could be included within the scope of landlord insurance. Make sure that you research what you need before comparing quotes, that way you will only see the prices for the insurance that you need and will not be tempted by cheaper deals that have less coverage.
One of the aspects you may wish to include is buildings cover. Buildings cover will protect you if the property is damaged. Many mortgages will ask for buildings cover as a stipulation for a mortgage. Alternatively, you may not need buildings cover if the property is a freehold building that is covered by comprehensive building insurance for the whole block.
Other aspects that you may not be able to afford without insurance protection include legal expenses if you have a dispute with a tenant. You may also need cover for malicious damage or theft by tenants.
- Cover for vacancy
When searching for landlord insurance quotes, it is important to consider your use of the property for the length of the insurance policy. If you are planning major renovation works or are not able to find tenants for the property, then this can invalidate your insurance policy.
Typically, if a property is left vacant for over 30 days, then insurers may invalidate your policy unless you take out additional cover for the unoccupied period. If you know in advance that there will be periods where the property is vacant, then make sure to tell your insurance agents so that that can factor unoccupied property insurance into your quote.
- Know what the insurer needs
To make sure you receive the payout that you deserve for claims, then it is vital that you comply with the stipulations that your insurer requires. There are many ways that you may accidentally invalidate your insurance claim, so it is wise to check the terms and conditions of each insurer to understand what they require from you and whether it is feasible.
Firstly, one of the primary reasons for invalidated cover is by not having a smoke or carbon dioxide alarm. Insurers will often ask for alarms to be positioned on every floor of the property, and if they are not maintained or tested regularly, then this may invalidate your claim too.
Other aspects insurers may require you to consider include gas safety inspections and portable appliance testing for electrical equipment. It is likely that all reasonable standards of safety must be maintained to ensure your insurance company is happy and will pay in the event of a claim.
Another consideration when getting started with landlord insurance comparison is whether your insurer will stipulate that you have to tell them what your tenants do. For example, if you choose to let your property to students or those who receive housing benefits, then your insurer may ask you to tell them this. They may also raise your premiums too. Make sure to check whether your insurer needs to know the occupation of every tenant and if they do, make sure to update the insurer every time a new tenant moves in.
If you want to make comparing landlord insurance stress-free, then get in touch with the team at Compare Insurance, who can talk you through the process and find the right insurance for you.
As a landlord with multiple properties, it might also be an idea to review your inheritance tax exposure. A simple life policy may help reduce this risk.