Landlord Insurance


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Protect Your Rental Property With the Right Coverage

Before you hand over the keys to your income property, it would be a good idea to protect your investment with landlord insurance to cover not only the premises you are renting out, but any of the appliances and furniture you are including with the rental. Protection from possible lawsuits is also wise as a landlord, as you could be held responsible for accidents or mishaps tenants have on your property.

Did you know?: Most insurance companies won’t insure your rental property if your tenants don’t have their own tenants insurance.

If you rely on monthly income from your tenants to make ends meet, rental property insurance can also provide a financial safety net for you. In this case, standard homeowner’s insurance would not cover you for lost income. If your rental unit becomes uninhabitable due to a fire, for example, it can take months before the restoration is completed and the tenants move back in. Coverage to replace lost rental income could be crucial if your own income depends on it.


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Types Of Landlord Insurance

Every type rental property has different type of risks and recommended coverage. Depending on the number of tenants and/or rental properties you have will determine the possible risks you may face and the protection you need.

For example, a family renting a home is considered a different type of risk than a student renting a room for the school year. Short-term arrangements are often considered riskier than long-term ones, and the screening method used by the landlord can also play a role in how a landlord policy is written.

  • Residential Rental Property – This is the insurance used to protect single or multiple-family dwellings normally leased or rented on a long-term basis. It is interesting to note that landlords will want to encourage their tenants to get tenant insurance, because many carriers won’t insure landlords who take on tenants without their own insurance. The presence of tenant insurance can also open up options for the landlord in negotiating their policy as well.
  • Apartment Building Coverage – Residential property coverage usually applies to units that are one to six family dwellings. Apartment building coverage is offered to any complex or building that houses seven or more families.
  • Rented Condo Insurance – When you own a condo that you rent to tenants, you need insurance to help fill in the gaps that the condo association insurance leaves behind. This is a type of landlord insurance that is done on a case-by-case basis to make sure the coverage is just right.
  • Student Rental Unit Insurance – If you rent rooms to students, then you need insurance to protect your investment. The rules you make regarding residency in your building have a significant effect on your insurance rates.
  • AirBnB Rentals – Offering short-term rental properties through the AirBnB app can be a great way to make extra money, but it can become costly if you don’t have the right insurance. It takes a special type of insurance to adequately protect your property in this very unique situation. This type of insurance can also be used to protect landlords who own properties out-of-town, landlords who take boarders in their own homes, and people who rent out seasonal properties.

Taking on tenants increases your risk for financial loss, and you need the right insurance to offset that risk. Be sure to discuss your specific needs with your broker to make sure that you get the insurance that fits your specific situation.

Doesn’t My Homeowner’s Insurance Cover My Rental Property?

It is possible that your existing homeowner’s property insurance will allow you to purchase a rental endorsement, depending on who is renting your property. Most insurance companies require that one family only is occupying the rented dwelling. Other combinations of tenants such as a number of unrelated students can also be acceptable under certain conditions but should be discussed with an insurance professional. The downside of covering your rental property under your own homeowner’s policy is if a claim should be made regarding the rental property, this could negatively affect your homeowner’s insurance rates and availability.

Landlord Insurance Coverage

What are you getting when you pay for landlord insurance? Most landlord insurance policies are customized to meet the needs of the client, but there are some common coverage options that help to protect landlords from financial disaster. Those clauses include:

  • Structure coverage – This is the liability protection for the actual structure, or portion of the structure, you are renting out. You can also get associated structure coverage for garages, sheds, and other structures on your property.
  • Vandalism protection – You want to trust your tenants, but smart business professionals protect themselves from every contingency. Vandalism protection will make sure that you are covered in the event that you get a tenant who does not respect your property.
  • Fair rental income protection – If your property becomes uninhabitable for any reason and your tenants are forced to vacate, then you can still get paid your rental income up to a predetermined level.
  • Under construction coverage – This type of landlord liability coverage protects your property as it is being built, or while it is being renovated prior to taking on tenants.
  • Condo liability protection – As a landlord, you should never rely on your condo association insurance to protect your investment. For example, any updates or improvements you make to your condo are not covered by the condo association policy if there is a fire or some other kind of damage. You will need to protect them yourself, and that is why you need comprehensive condo coverage.
  • Theft coverage – If you rent out structures that include furniture and appliances, then you should get theft coverage to protect your property.

Do Your Tenants a Favour

Your landlord insurance does not cover the possessions and belongings of your tenants or provide them with liability coverage, so it would be good advice to suggest they consider tenant’s insurance. If their furniture, clothes, TVs, computers and other belongings are ruined by fire or water damage they caused or another uninsured tenant caused, your insurance does not cover them. When your tenants start adding up the value of their possessions, they might want to look into getting their own renter’s insurance.

See All Coverage Options

List of all home insurance coverage options

Learn more about what's covered by home insurance in Ontario.

Questions?

If you have any questions or would like a no obligation landlord insurance quote, please call Mitchell & Whale Insurance Brokers at 1-800-731-2228 or email us at info@mitchellwhale.com. We’d be happy to help!

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