AirBnB insurance holds the key to unlocking the huge opportunity of renting out a property to short term tenants.
But get it wrong and you could be without cover – not just for your buildings value but also your legal liability.
Don’t be fooled into thinking AirBnB home insurance UK just means your standard home insurance policy. It doesn’t, and if you get it wrong your insurer may well refuse to pay out, even though you’ve paid your premium fair and square.
Those home insurance policies are designed for just you and your family at home. To an insurer that’s a very different risk compared to lots of new people coming and going without background checks, with the increased risks of damage and loss.
Thankfully, at Emerald Life we make AirBnB insurance simple. If you have a short term left property then you can go through our fast online quote form and simply select that you are letting it out through AirBnB.
That allows us to judge the right pricing automatically and apply the correct endorsements to your landlord insurance policy so you have in writing that your AirBnB property is covered. You can also cover the property if you are letting out on other sites, or privately. There are options in Emerald’s online journey that will help you select the right option, but if you are in any doubt just call and one of our specially-trained call centre agents will be on hand to help.
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But What Does AirBnB Insurance Include?
Most importantly, AirBnB insurance means your insurer has taken account of the nature of your short term let and priced it correctly and noted on the policy that it is an AirBnB.
That means in the event of a claim you are covered and the insurer cannot reject a claim on the grounds that it is an AirBnB and they were not informed.
So you have cover. And that’s the most important thing. But what is included in that cover?
AirBnB Home Insurance – Buildings Cover
One of the most obvious and important aspects of cover – both of standard home insurance and landlord insurance – is the buildings value.
That means if the property were totally destroyed, the insurer would pay to reinstate it up to the buildings sum insured. That is why it is important to use an accurate estimate of your rebuild value as the buildings sum insured. Note that this is not the same as the market value, but just the cost of work and materials to rebuild the physical structure of the house.
Your buildings cover also includes smaller damage to the property – such as doors in a break-in – as well as fixtures like sinks and baths.
If your AirBnB is a leasehold flat then you should investigate what your insurance responsibilities are because buildings insurance is usually the responsibility of the freeholder and included in your service charge as part of a block insurance policy.
It is likely that your lease requires you to obtain permission from the freeholder in order to let out your flat, and the freeholder insurance may also not pay out if there is damage to the buildings and it later turns out the flat is let to short-term tenants. Make sure they understand that you are specifically looking to let it out on AirBnB.
AirBnB Home Insurance – Contents
With an AirBnB it is likely you have provided a lot of things to make guests’ stays comfortable.
Those items can be insured against theft and loss with an AirBnB insurance policy. That could include all sorts of things like curtains, carpets and appliances.
At Emerald Life we actually provide £5000 of cover free with a landlord insurance policy, including AirBnBs. However, you can always increase that level if you have more in there.
Please note though that landlord contents cover only includes your contents as landlord and nothing belonging to tenants.
If your tenants are travelling then they may want to consider travel insurance. A good travel insurance policy can include cover for items they take with them.
Landlord Liability Cover
An important cover for all homeowners but arguably more so for AirBnB hosts is property owner’s liability cover.
That’s landlord legal cover which means if someone is injured on the property and sues you your legal fees are covered.
With Emerald Life you can opt for £2 million or £5 million of legal expenses cover for such claims.
What To Look For In AirBnB Host Insurance
- Liability cover in case a guest (or anyone else) is injured
- Buildings cover if it is your responsibility
- Cover for your contents. Note that insurers may exclude claims arising from theft by tenants. However, break-ins, floods and fires can still happen.
What If I Am Letting A Spare Room?
A landlord insurance policy is designed for a property you let that you don’t live in.
But if you are letting your spare room on AirBnB then it is likely that your insurer will have different conditions and so it is worth asking.
In general this could be covered by a home insurance policy – especially if it allows lodgers or paying guests. However, whatever policy you have it is important that you contact your insurer and let them know.
It is probably also worth asking to get their approval in written confirmation, ideally as an endorsement on the policy, to make things clear in the event of a claim.