Typical Homeowners Insurance Falls Short of Properly Protecting a Rental or Investment Property
Real Estate has never been more expensive than it is today. Mix that with the lowest borrowing rates in decades and you get an influx of people investing in real estate and by default, becoming "Landlords". Unfortunately many landlords overlook or don't even consider how this changes their position and insurance needs.
Vaughan, Canada, February 26, 2016 (Newswire.com) - Being a landlord is more than depositing a rent cheque once a month. You are responsible for maintaining the property, communicating with your tenants and of course, properly insuring the property. What that means is being aware of where typical homeowners insurance falls short of properly protecting a rental or investment property. Here is what to keep in mind regarding Landlord Insurance:
1. Homeowners Insurance is not equal to Landlord Insurance
A Landlord needs greater protection in areas a regular homeowner would not as a rented home is at different risk than one that is owner-occupied. For instance, should your rental property become uninhabitable your Landlord Insurance would cover you for lost rental income while it is repaired. It would also offer increased coverage for damages and legal representation should you be sued for losses related to injury or property damage claims.
Additionally, Landlord insurance would include Landlord Property Insurance where your appliances and furniture in the rental are insured as well.
2. Umbrella Insurance
Umbrella Liability insurance would cover you against many unforeseen liabilities and the cost of lawsuits outside typical limits and jurisdictions. This would also cover wrongful eviction lawsuits and settlements.
3. Open Communication with Tenants
Ensure your tenants are properly informed about the role they play and what they are responsible for in terms of the Landlord insurance and the property. Ensure they are aware of risks and communicate any issues to you in a timely manner. Of course when selecting a tenant, you want to go through the proper due diligence in performing background and credit checks and ensuring there is a signed Tenant Agreement in place.
4. If the rental is a Condo…
If your rental property is a condo you have much more to consider in your Landlord Insurance. For comprehensive protection for a condo you’ll need a policy that includes protection from Condo Deductible Assessments, Condo Property Damage Assessments and other assessments that can be the obligation of the individual unit owner and not the building’s insurer.
This is a simple and concise list of things to consider if you are a new Landlord. Real Estate has proven to be a worthwhile investment but it is important that you are prudent and are properly informed of the inherent risks of being a Landlord. It is highly recommended that prior to entering any rental agreement you contact your broker to ensure that you have a comprehensive policy that will offer you the peace of mind in knowing that your investment is protected and flourish.
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