Landlord insurance renewal tips.
The past 12 months or so have seen major changes to the climate in which landlords do business. That changing climate has made it more important than ever that you review and reconsider your precise landlord insurance needs before the next renewal date comes around.
An article in The Week magazine on the 2nd of December 2016, for instance, described just some of the ways in which landlords have been struggling to adjust to the new climate for buying to let – and managing the essential business expenses of repairs, maintenance, mortgage repayments, letting agency fees and insurance.
Here are some tips about what to look out for when you receive the next renewal notice for your landlord insurance:
- things change – and none the more so than in the business of buying to let and the increasing burden of regulation, landlords’ obligations and amendments to the tax regime;
- take all these changes into account, therefore, when reviewing any renewal notice you receive about your landlord insurance – does it still provide the comprehensive cover you need or have changes meant that your insurance needs to provide greater protection in certain areas;
Ask the experts
- interpreting many of the changes and understanding just how they might affect your buy to let business may prove more difficult than it first appears – and overlooking any particular element may prove costly in time to come;
- a valuable safeguard against any such oversight is to consult the experts at a specialist landlord insurance provider such as us here at Primecover – not only are we able to guide you through those elements of cover your particular buy to let business may need, but we might reveal important aspects of insurance which you might not have thought about;
Review the elements of insurance you need
- landlord insurance covers a number of different risks faced both by the structure and fabric of your property, but also by the business itself;
- you might want to ask yourself whether you have cover for all the elements which you might need – and whether the level of cover is sufficient to meet the demands of the current buy to let climate;
Building and contents insurance
- have you sufficient cover for the building and its contents to allow its complete reconstruction and the replacement of contents in the event of a major incident leading to a total loss – this might involve reviewing and renewing your estimate of current rebuilding costs;
Landlord liability insurance
- you have a duty of care towards your tenants, their visitors, your neighbours and even members of the general public, such that any injury or property damage they may suffer in connection with your ownership of the dwelling might entitle them to claim damages from you in compensation;
- very substantial sums may be claimed in this fashion, so you might want to make sure you have a minimum of £1 million landlord liability insurance;
Employer’s liability insurance
- if you employ anyone else to help run your buy to let business, make sure you have the minimum level of at least £5 million employer’s liability insurance – since that is the law;
- typically, most landlord insurance policies do not include this element of protection as standard, so you will need to buy standalone cover;
Compensation for loss of rental income
- landlord insurance typically provides a degree of compensation for loss of rental income following a major incident which leaves the property temporarily uninhabitable – review the maximum amount payable under any such provision and ensure that it is sufficient to safeguard your business in these circumstances.
Taking the opportunity to review your landlord insurance cover before the next renewal date, therefore may ensure the appropriate level of protection for the property and your buy to let business.
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