Compare Landlord Insurance: Which One Is The Best?

Learn all about landlord insurance coverage, the different policies and how to choose the best landlord insurance in the UK.

Updated: February 26, 2024
Matt Crabtree

Written By

Matt Crabtree

 

If you own a rental property, it's a good idea to have it insured in case damage or issues arise with your tenants. Landlord insurance isn't legally required; it may save you money.

However, it may be contractual if you've taken out a buy-to-let mortgage to acquire your rental property. You can have different policies covering a wide range of properties.

If you've not taken out landlord insurance cover before, you may need help figuring out where to start looking.

In this article, you'll learn about landlord insurance coverage, the different policies and how to choose the best one.

What Is Landlord Insurance?

Landlord insurance is a cover that protects landlords from risks associated with their rental property. You can add cover to the policy to emphasise protection in certain areas.

If anything happens to the property or payment issues arise, the landlord is protected against the risk and gives you peace of mind. As a landlord, you should consider what risks you want to cover with a landlord insurance policy. There is specialist landlord insurance based on the different risks.

Landlord insurance covers different property types, such as:

  • Residential property: Houses you rent out as homes for tenants.
  • Multi-property: Typically, landlord insurances more than one property.
  • Commercial property: If you rent out a factory, office, warehouse or workshop to a tenant, landlord insurance can also cover it.

Landlord insurance can include building and contents insurance, property owners' liability, tenant default insurance, and loss of rent guarantee insurance, but not always. Landlord insurance costs will vary between providers; the average cost of landlord insurance in the UK is £170.

When looking at insurance, you may come across home insurance. Home insurance differs from landlord insurance and isn't appropriate for rental properties as risks and insurance vary for rentals from owner-occupied homes.

What Does Landlord Insurance Cover?

When you buy a landlord insurance policy, you can choose the insurance based on the risks you want to cover; the more you have on your rental property, the less risk of losing money. You can get general landlord insurance as it covers most things, but you may need to add extra cover to your policy.

Most landlord insurance policies include cover for:

  • The property structure: Any part of the building will be covered; this may include outside space, such as a shed.
  • Fitted areas: Fitted areas like a kitchen and anything attached to the building will be covered, too.
  • Bathrooms, toilets and wet rooms: As long as issues aren't from poor maintenance or general wear and tear, these house areas are covered under the policy.
  • Landlord's furniture: If you've chosen to rent your property as furnished or part furnished, and you've chosen to include landlord contents cover, then the policy will consist of any landlord's belongings, flooring, blinds, and curtains.
  • Accidental or malicious damage: If your tenants do any damage, accident or on purpose, the insurance policy should cover the cost of any repairs. Damage caused by extreme weather conditions is included in the insurance policy.

If you're wondering what landlord insurance doesn't cover, we can tell you that it doesn't involve the following:

  • Damage by animals: Any damage done to the house by pets or animals isn't included in landlord insurance. Still, some providers may have pet policies you can add to your coverage.
  • Wear and tear: Any general wear or tear on the property doesn't have insurance coverage.
  • Tenant's items: Your tenants must get their own contents insurance, as your policy won't cover any of their belongings.

What Are the Different Types of Landlord Insurance?

All landlord insurance policies are helpful for property owners, but what you choose to include in your landlord insurance is entirely up to you.

To help find the best landlord insurance policies, we have explored all the different types below.

Buildings Insurance

Landlord building insurance covers the property itself. If the property's structure needs rebuilding or repairs, the landlord's building insurance will cover the cost. The cost is only covered if fire, floods and potentially vandalism cause the damage.

Buildings insurance will cover the cost to rebuild, replace, or repair things like pipes, cables, drains, windows, doors, walls, roods, fitted kitchens and bathrooms. Some policies include sheds, fences, and sheds. Your insurance should cover the total cost of rebuilding the property.

Buildings insurance costs will depend on when the property's age, conditions, building materials, and other factors that could affect your building's structure.

Landlord Contents Insurance

If you rent a fully furnished or part-furnished property, contents insurance will cover the cost of any repairs or replacements if the items are lost, damaged or stolen. You won't need landlord contents insurance if you rent your property without furniture.

Landlord contents cover offers protection for items like furnishings, applicants and furniture. The policy covers the cost of repairs or replacements. The landlord's contents insurance does not cover the tenant's contents, so if they want protection, they will have to get their specific insurance. Landlord contents insurance doesn't cover unoccupied properties, valuables, wear and tear, and any illegal activity.

The cost of contents insurance will depend on the value of your contents, house security, location, policy, excess and claims history.

Rent Guarantee Insurance

Rent guarantee insurance, also known as tenant default insurance, is a type of cover that protects landlords from the real risk of non-payment of rent. The policy protects property owners against loss of income. Rent cover usually ranges from six to 12 months, and the insurance provider may set monthly and maximum limits.

The rent guarantee covers lost rent and landlord legal expenses and gives you access to a legal advice helpline. The insurance doesn't cover deferral periods, high-risk tenants, commercial properties, or rental contract disputes, and it stops when the tenant leaves and if you decide to sell the rental property.

The cost of rent guarantee insurance will depend on the property, size, location, the types of tenants you're renting to and their rental income. The complexity, cover and excess you're willing to pay will also contribute to the cost.

Accidental Damage Insurance

Accidental damage insurance covers you for any single event accident that causes damage to a property or contents in the property. You can usually add unintentional damage cover onto building and contents insurance policies.

Accidental damage insurance covers the property's main structure, including permanently fitted fixtures and fittings, domestic outbuildings, and garden features like walls, gates, fences and more.

Property Portfolio Insurance

Consider property portfolio insurance if you own five or more properties. Property portfolio insurance implies insurance management across all of their owned properties.

Instead of taking out individual insurance policies for each property, all owned properties are covered under one policy. It makes paperwork less taxing, and some insurance providers will offer discounts when more properties are added to the policy.

Portfolio insurance usually includes coverage for buildings and contents, damage caused by pets, public and property owners' liability, accidental and malicious damage, length periods of no tenancies, and rent loss.

What Is the Best Landlord Insurance?

Deciding the best landlord insurance is subjective to each property owner, as some policies are more relevant than others. Look at your properties and decide what coverage you will use.

The most common landlord insurance property owners get are landlord's buildings insurance and contents insurance. From there, they add the relevant extra coverage.

Consider the following coverage for your landlord insurance:

  • Legal expenses cover: Provides cover legal expenses in contract disputes, debt recovery and evicting squatters. Not all insurance providers include legal expenses insurance, so you may have to buy it separately or add it as an extra. Including legal costs under your landlord insurance could protect you from losing money in potential tenant claims.
  • Landlord home emergency cover: Covers electrical failures, burst pipes, boiler and central heating breakdowns, and any repairs from any damages caused by the home emergency. The insurance provider will usually give you access to a 24/7 helpline in case of a home emergency.
  • Property owner's liability cover: If accidents occur inside your rental property, landlord liability insurance protects you from injury or damage claims. Property owners liability insurance is a type of public liability insurance.
  • Unoccupied property: If your rental property currently has no tenants, you’ll be protected from loss of rental income. Unoccupied property insurance is also sometimes known as tenant default insurance.

Landlord Insurance Cover: The Verdict

You must pick the right landlord insurance; the last thing you want is something to occur to your properties, and then you must pay out of your pocket to amend the issues. Not all insurance providers will offer insurance with the same coverage, so ensure you know what the policies cover before agreeing to it.

When you apply for landlord insurance, you will want to compare landlord insurance quotes to see which insurance provider gives you the best deal. Don't accept the first quote you receive; you should explore your options.

You can get landlord insurance on your residential or commercial properties, so look for a provider that offers the best insurance for the types of properties you own.

Related Guides:

Compare Landlord Insurance: FAQs

How Much Does Landlord Insurance Cost?

Do You Need Landlord Insurance?

What Properties Does Landlord Insurance Cover?

What Does Landlord Insurance Cover?

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