People who want to rent out their home, townhome, condo, etc., will get a landlord insurance policy to protect their investment. Coverage helps protect a landlord from financial losses from a covered event. If a building fire occurs, this is one of the most damaging events that could happen to a property. The risks are even greater when a fire occurs to an apartment or condominium. It is important to know what does landlord insurance pay for after a fire to determine if other coverage is necessary.
First, let’s look at the types of coverage that are typically found in a landlord insurance policy. This could vary depending on the insurance provider, but landlord policies generally consist of:
- Dwelling coverage – Accidents, natural disasters, and theft protection for your property.
- Other structures coverage – Includes garages, sheds, and other detached structures.
- Personal liability and medical expenses – If a tenant or guest is harmed while they are on your property and a lawsuit is brought against you for property damage or bodily injury, this provides medical payments. For instance, if you were negligent in making repairs that resulted in a plumbing leak, your policy would pay the legal fees and settlement costs through the liability portion.
- Loss of rental income – If your property can’t be rented due to a covered event, this coverage reimburses you for the rental income lost while the property is being repaired.
- Personal property coverage – Personal property that you have on-site to handle maintenance is covered. For example, if you leave a lawnmower on the property for your tenant to mow grass, and it is destroyed in a fire, it will be covered under this coverage.
There are specific responsibilities that both the tenant and landlord have to protect themselves adequately in the case of a fire. As a result, it is recommended that a landlord require that a potential tenant secure renter’s insurance as part of their lease terms. This will help avoid disputes, and it will lead to the most favorable outcome for both parties after a fire occurs.
What Does Landlord Insurance Pay For After A Fire
A landlord insurance policy should cover you for fire damages that occur to the structure and fixtures (cabinets, countertops, plumbing, electrical system, etc.). This also means that the landlord is the one who is responsible for getting these structures and fixtures repaired after a fire. Appliances such as the refrigerator, stove, washer, dryer, and some window coverings are also often included in a policy.
Damages To The Exterior Of A Building
The exterior of the building that is damaged due to a fire is also covered by a typical landlord insurance policy. This includes the exterior walls of a building.
Add-On Building Structures
Some properties have other structures that are not attached to the building itself. This includes garages, pool houses, fences, guesthouses, or gazebos. A landlord insurance policy will cover these structures if they are damaged by a fire.
Tenant Owned Property
The furniture, electronics, clothing, valuables, and other belongings of a tenant may get damaged by a fire that occurs on the property. Unfortunately, the only personal property that is covered in these cases is that which belongs to the landlord.
A renter or tenant is responsible for covering the damages that occur on their personal property. This coverage is available through renter’s insurance; otherwise, they must recoup the costs out of their pockets.
Renters should get renters insurance to protect their property as well as cover themselves from liability. If a landlord is able to prove that the tenant was the one who caused the fire, they could also be held liable for paying the damages incurred on the property. Other common coverages in a renters insurance policy include:
- Injury to visitors – Legal and medical expenses an injured visitor incurs that the renter is responsible for.
- Smoke damage – Replace or repair your belongings that are damaged by smoke as a result of a fire.
- Third-party property damage – Covers the personal belongings of a third party that is damaged when they are on your rented property.
Fair Market Rent If A Property Is Uninhabitable
A fire can make a property unlivable until repairs are completed. Depending on the amount of damage, it could take a few weeks to several months for the home to become inhabitable again. Landlord insurance will help you cover the loss of rental income and/or pay your monthly mortgage during this time. This coverage is usually available for up to 12 months.
Reach Out To Professional Personal Insurance Brokers
Getting your rental property adequately covered with landlord insurance will help protect your investment. To learn more about your options, speak to an experienced Merchant Family Agency insurance broker today. You can reach us at 407.707.6418 or request a quote online.