What is Contents Insurance?

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We often find that landlords don’t realise that contents cover can be an additional extra. The new Commercial Insurance Act puts the responsibility on landlords. For them to ensure that they have the correct cover for their property. It is now law that landlords are responsible if they are not insured fully in the event of an insurance claim.

Not all landlord insurance policies cover landlord’s contents. It is difficult to define what landlord’s contents are. In practical terms, imagine you were to turn the house upside down, the items that fell out would be included as contents. The building insurance covers fixed items such as fitted kitchens, bathrooms, and carpets.

Are appliances/white goods covered for landlord’s contents insurance?

Not everyone’s insurance policy covers white goods. We have an exclusive policy with Aviva insurance which includes landlord’s contents cover up to £5,000. This includes white goods whether fitted or not. Not all policies are the same though. Some landlord insurance policies do not include contents cover or it may be an optional extra. It is so important that you insure your house correctly.

Make sure that you have the right amount of appliance cover for anything that you have in the property. Some of the appliance cover you may have will have a warranty and sometimes it will have an extended warranty, so you need to check. You may have anything for instance such as a washing machine and personal possessions as well so you should always check these. You may have fridge freezer and other home appliances that you may need to cover. To have peace of mind especially if you are in future to be repairing/replacing these items. Personals possessions cover will be unlikely as this would be done by the tenants. Whilst you may be able to get appliance cover you need to understand that any call out charges for repair of these wouldn’t come under your insurance policy and that person possessions are the tenants responsibility.

Do I need contents insurance for my tenant’s belongings?

You won’t need to include cover for your tenant’s belongings in your landlord’s insurance policy as this is up to your tenants.

What does landlord’s contents insurance actually cover?

The exact details of your policy could vary between insurers so you will need to check.

However, you would expect the following to be covered as standard or alternatively as an add on: –

  • Furniture such as sofas and cabinets
  • Kitchen appliances like ovens and sinks
  • Curtains
  • Carpets
  • Paintings and pictures
  • Light fittings
  • Outbuildings such as sheds or outhouses
  • Garden and any contents in the garden
  • Communal areas, if you are letting your property out to multiple tenants

What will I be insured against with landlords contents cover?

This really does depend on your provider but we have a hugely diverse selection that you can choose from.

You will usually find that the following is covered:-

Theft by tenant

If your tenant is stealing the contents that you had in your property then you would be able to make a claim against them.  Obviously you would need to ensure that there was an inventory and it was contained within your tenancy agreement.  You may find that you have a recovery by law in any event.

Malicious damage by tenant

This isn’t always included within policies it is normally an added extra.  If your tenants cause deliberate damage to your properties contents then you may be able to make a claim.  However, most landlords have a tendency to remove this from their policy because it can be expensive.  We have found and often inform landlords that this is not a good idea.  Saving a few pounds at the outset of an insurance policy where you may end up paying out thousands at the end due to this is not a worthwhile exercise.

Accidental damage

If the contents of your property were damaged by accident.  Again this isn’t standard cover. You would need to check your policy and whether it is included.  It can be at a cost but again it is so worthwhile

Alternative accommodation

If your tenants require alternative living arrangements as a result of any caused.  This would normally be in most policies but it is something that you need to check.

Loss of rent

If you lose rental income as a result of damage caused.  This isn’t always in every single policy and again you should check to see whether it is included.  It doesn’t mean that they will pay out for your rent in the event that your tenant doesn’t pay it.  This is not what this cover is for.  It is in the event that your property is damaged to such an extent that the tenants have to move out.  For instance by way of fire or storm.

What isn’t covered by landlord’s contents insurance?

You will find that each policy is different and so is every provider.  Some items may not be covered by standard landlord’s contents insurance policy meaning that they will require an extra level of coverage to be able to make a claim.

These are normally items such as:-

  • Items damaged by escape of water in unoccupied properties
  • Loss, damage or theft in unoccupied properties
  • Expensive or valuation items such as electronics or works of art
  • Items damaged as a result of wear and tear
  • Loss, damage or theft caused by legal activity
  • Damage caused by tenants if either of their credit reference was poor

You need to check what requirements you have from your insurers to ensure that you are paid out in these instance.  It is critical that you look at this.

How much does a landlord contents insurance cost?

The premiums you pay for contents insurance will depend on a number of factors but it can be wide-ranging and you should ask us for the alternatives

The factors are as follows:-

The contents

The more expensive and valuable the belongings the more likely it is going to cost you to cover them.  Is it worthwhile leaving expensive items at the property?

Your security

Installing solid security measures is not only likely to keep your property safe but can also majorly reduce your contents insurance premium as a result. Five lever mortice locks and window locks could cut your premium.

The location

Unfortunately this is something that a lot of landlords can’t do anything about.  If you are in a high crime area it may raise your premiums it’s just an unfortunate situation.

Your policy

We often find that landlords have taken out a policy but don’t actually know what it covers.  When we receive it from other brokers they haven’t got half the cover that they should have or have reduced it such to the bone that it is not worth having.  You need to see what added extras are and add them to your insurance quote such as accidental damage etc.  The higher the level of cover that you would expect the premium to be more expensive.  The lower the cost more than likely the lower the cover.  You may want to consider combining contents and buildings insurance policies as this can also reduce the cost.

Your excess

You will find that some insurance companies will allow you to increase a voluntary excess payment so that in the event that you may make a claim you pay for the first £500.00 or £1,000.00 for example.  They may be willing to lower your premiums but it is not always the case.

Your claims history

If you have made a number of claims previously you need to disclose them.  Insurers might see somebody who is more than likely to make another claim in the future if you have.  However you have to be honest.  The new insurance Act puts a responsibility on all landlords to ensure that they make full disclosure. In the event that you didn’t and you suddenly find that you make a claim and the insurance company have found out that you have made a claim in the past they may not pay it out.  So be honest and you will get the best possible cover for you.

Compare landlord’s insurance quotes

Always look at the various ways of comparing your insurance.  Just because it is cheaper doesn’t necessarily mean that it has actually got a better cover.

Whilst you will be able to compare quotes you need to ensure what they cover and what the excesses are together with any additional extras.

You should remember that the cheapest available policy isn’t always the best.  Also, ensure that you don’t end up underinsuring yourself as this could be critical.

Are you a student landlord and have furniture? Is this covered in your landlord’s contents insurance?

Most if not all insurance companies would not cover furniture within the property. They would treat this as an added extra. It is therefore important that you check what the policy includes for a furnished property. Look for a policy that will replace belongings on an old for new basis. This means that your possessions will be replaced with shiny new ones should you make a claim. Most student landlords don’t realise that their furniture isn’t covered in the event of a claim against theft, loss or damage by fire. Think how much it would cost to replace such furniture for you?

Can tenants get their own contents insurance as I don’t have any furnishings at the property, so I don’t feel I need it?

The items that you might want to consider in relation to your property are appliance cover. It is often that washing machine, fridge freezers and appliances might need your insurance to cover these. We outline it above what you will need to do. What you don’t want to find that you leave items at the property that are personal to you and these would need personal possessions cover. It is a difficult item to get so therefore we would suggest you always remove your personal possessions. Obviously, if an appliance needs repairing or replacing then you would normally get an home appliance engineer to deal with it for you. The insurance is not there to deal with wear and tear but gives you peace of mind as outlined above. You may find that you are able to extend an warranty with any of your current appliances that could also deal with the wear and tear and repair and replacing of it.

I have students in my property, can they get students contents insurance rather than me deal with the contents?

This all depends on what type of possessions you have left in the property. You will often find that student properties have furniture that needs to be insurance and you must deal with this.

However, students can get contents cover. This would cover them for their contents and belongings such as clothes and electrical items whilst they are living at university. It is often standard that gadgets aren’t normally included within contents insurance, but they can get this as additional items.

Do my students need contents insurance, and can I insist on it?

You are not entitled to insist on content cover for tenants. It is your responsibility to deal with the building and contents for your items but not the tenants. However, it is always advisable for a tenant to take out contents cover. They may have all sorts of belongings in a house or student halls, but it is their responsibility to deal with this.

Are mobile phones covered by students’ contents insurance on my policy or do they need to take out their own separate cover?

It is not your responsibility to deal with gadgets and mobiles these are totally down to any contents cover that the tenant needs to take out. They aren’t standard policies and students would need to take out their own insurance to cover this.

Where do I get buildings and contents insurance for my property?

Why not speak to us regarding any quote you may require for your buildings and contents. At Iinsure 365 we have a multiple insurance products as well as a wide range of suppliers. We can provide you with a quote within minutes for any one property or if you are a multiple property landlord as well.

We cover properties throughout the United Kingdom of all shapes and sizes from residential through to commercial as well as unoccupied.

Do you need professional indemnity/business insurance?

We have lots of products that we can supply you with whether you are working from home or in an office. Not only can we do the buildings, but we can do the contents and we can do your own business insurance. Why don’t you contact us on 01273 827090 and speak to us? Alternatively you can email on enquiries@iinsure365.co.uk or fill in the quote form here.

Why not have a look at other articles that may be of interest to you in our news centre, such as; landlords insurance, Right to manage, commercial property, blocks of flats, enfranchisements, property management, houses in multiple occupation, and lots of other categories that will be able to give you lots of information of anything you may require.

Why not have a look at other articles that may be of interest to you in our news centre, such as; landlords insurance, Right to manage, commercial property, blocks of flats, enfranchisements, property management, houses in multiple occupation, and lots of other categories that will be able to give you lots of information of anything you may require.

Do you need landlord insurance?

Landlord insurance covers the cost of your property in the event it is damaged.

A landlord policy would normally insure you for the structure of the building to include built in items such as kitchens, bathrooms and boilers etc. You would need to make sure that the property is insured for the full re-building cost including any professional fees and the cost of site clearance.

You may need expert advice to calculate the re-building cost, which is often a lot less than the market value.

Landlord insurance often covers the building or structure in the event of;

Fire

Lightening

Explosion

Earthquake

Riot

Civil disturbance

Malicious acts

Storm or flood

Escape of water

Accidental damage

It is important that you have the right type of cover.

Do I need buy to let insurance?

If you purchase a property or alternatively turn an existing property into a buy to let, then you would need to have the right type of cover. Your home insurance wouldn’t cover the cost of re-building it for you. You may have high value items in the property, and you would need to consider contents insurance as outlined above.

Landlord insurance covers you against unpredictable events like, vandalism, fire or flood. It ensures against claims should tenants injure themselves in your property and you are found to be liable.

When becoming a property investor, you need to ensure that you can ride out the misfortunes that might curtail your rental income and cause you additional costs.

What does the building sum insure mean?

This is the cost of re-building your property and it is often different from the market value. It is often found on a valuation survey when you first buy the property. Our landlord building insurance would normally state the amount that the property re-build value is for. It is important that you have the right type of cover.

Why should I choose iInsure 365.

Not only do we have a wealth of experience in the insurance market, but we pride ourselves on giving you the most comprehensive cover at the best price.

I have a mortgage can I note the lenders interest on my policy.

Of course, we are more than happy to be able to put your lenders details on the policy so that you can provide this with them.

Do you cover all types of occupancy such as DSS and student properties?

We can provide you with quotes for all types of occupancy in respect of the property including asylum seekers.

You need to realise that the different occupancy of a property can effects the value of your premium and if you don’t have the right policy for the right occupants then you may not be paid out.

It is important therefore that you give full disclosure of who is exactly in the property.

Can you do comparison quotes for me from various providers?

We can supply you with two or three quotes on a property for your landlords building insurance. We would also look to ensure that you get the best possible price as well as cover, but you will need to inform us of exactly what you need. It is important that you read the documentation and understand your policy so that you are happy with it. It is your responsibility to do so.

Can you provide unoccupied property insurance?

We have fantastic providers for this type of insurance. Unoccupied property can be difficult to obtain depending on the occupancy of your property. It is important that you tell us the minute your property is empty or if you want to quote, we can provide this for you.

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