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Our top 3 tips for Landlords

Know the difference between home and landlord insurance

A growing number of landlords leave themselves unintentionally exposed to severe risk by only having home insurance on their rented properties. Although what they cover may be similar, there can be substantial differences between a homeowners and landlords’ insurance policy. Home insurance is designed to cover a property that the policyholder is residing in whereas landlords’ insurance is intended to cover a property rented to tenants. Insurance companies can be very strict on this term as landlord’s insurance can be considered a higher risk, in fact, some insurers will not offer landlords insurance.

Landlords insurance is also considered an essential product and can be a mandatory clause in many ‘buy to let’ mortgage agreements.

 

If you’re letting out a flat, look at content’s insurance.

Letting out a flat or any property within a building complex will typically mean you pay a fee within your service charge that would cover your share of the building’s insurance. Freeholders do this to make sure that the whole complex is protected by the same insurance company, minimising issues if there were to be a claim.

Although all policies can be different, this typically only covers you for the structure of your property and communal areas but does not extend to cover any of your contents in the flat which are being left for the use of the tenants.

Even If your property isn’t furnished, the property is likely to have some carpets and you will ordinarily provide some free-standing white goods such as kitchen appliances, of which these items could be at risk in the event of a Fire, Flood or Malicious Damage by the tenant which could not be covered under the building’s insurance.

In addition, our landlords’ contents policy also covers fixtures and fittings such as fitted kitchens and bathrooms which if not covered under your buildings insurance are insured under the policy where the lease agreement makes the landlord responsible.  Furthermore, the policy includes as standard up to £5,000,000 of Legal Liability.

Understand the deposit cap

As part of the Tenant Fee Ban on June 1st, you will now only be able to take 5 weeks’ worth of rent as a deposit, leaving you more at risk if there are dilapidations at the end of a tenancy. You can help challenge this in two ways…

  • Conduct comprehensive references: Meeting new tenants are like an interview, most people can present themselves in a favorable light initially but regardless of how nice they seem, it’s important to accurately vet their backgrounds. The internet is rampant with resources on how to fraudulently move into a property. Our reference handlers are regularly trained on how to spot these and keep up to date with new practices.
  • Use deposit substitutes: Offer tenants a choice between TDS or alternatives such as our Smart Deposit Warranty. This product provides two clear benefits; it allows you to provide the tenant with an even cheaper upfront cost, making your property more attractive due to a lower barrier of entry. Secondly, it provides more adequate cover to you, yielding up to two months’ worth of rent for damages at the end of a tenancy.

*not applicable where prices are quoting minimum premium.

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