If you rent your home on a short-term basis — like your home or cabin — you may think you’re covered for damage, theft or liability through your homeowners policy.
But that may not always be true. Your homeowners insurance is meant for owner-occupied properties. These policies may limit coverage when the dwelling is rented on a short-term basis, which means you’ll need temporary home insurance to ensure you don’t face gaps in coverage.
Short-term rental coverage is great for homeowners that want to rent out their home while they’re away. Coverage is limited to 62 days (about 2 months) per calendar year, and it is ideal for snowbirds who want to rent their place when they’re not around during those chilly winter months.
If you’ve got friends, extended family or house sitters scheduled to look after your home while you're away, this temporary and short-term rental coverage can help to better protect your finances. Even if you're not renting out your place, it’s an extra layer of protection that can really make a difference if something unexpected happens.
It’s also great coverage if you’re planning on house swapping with another homeowner across the US, or across the world. Take look at how temporary and short-term rental coverage helps to protect your home — when you rent it out or have a house sitter for limited periods of time during a given calendar year.
What Does Temporary Renters Insurance Cover
Our temporary rental-to-others coverage is protection you can add to your homeowners insurance policy if you lease your home for no more than 62 days a year. It’s designed to protect you against loss from damages — to your building and its contents while it's occupied by someone while you’re away.
Adding landlord coverage helps to protect property managers and real estate owners against lost income if their property sustains a covered loss that makes it unrentable. But temporary rental coverage to others works a little differently.
Here’s a closer look at some of the ways short-term rental insurance protects your home while it’s being rented or lived in by someone else:
Rental Home Damage
Suppose you’re a snowbird and decide to rent out your home while you’re away enjoying warmer weather in the southern US. If you rent out your home, there’s always a risk that the tenants might damage it or your contents.
Sometimes homeowners ask renters to sign a rental agreement, supply a security deposit and even run credit checks on renters up front. With credit scores in hand, you can make a more informed decision on the financial health of the prospective renter.
If the house stays in good condition, the homeowner returns the security deposit to the renter. But if the tenant causes accidental damage during the stay, that security deposit will be used to cover the damages.
And in some situations, the security deposit alone may not be enough to cover major damage. Suppose a fire breaks out in the kitchen or your temporary renter damages the garage door when backing out. Or perhaps your backyard furniture is stolen while you’re away.
Without the added protection of temporary rental coverage, you may be left to pay out of pocket to restore your home. In these cases, this additional insurance can step in and help cover those costs in the event of a covered loss — after meeting your deductible.
Other issues with your home, like those resulting from normal wear and tear, will not be covered. You’ll need to keep your home well maintained to keep losses to a minimum.
Theft and Burglary
If a renter steals from your home, you may not realize it until later — long after you’ve returned their security deposit. Similar to the theft protection you have on your home when it isn’t rented out, temporary rental-to-others coverage also protects you if anyone steals certain items from your home when it’s under lease.
And this doesn’t just apply to theft by those staying in your home. It also includes theft coverage if a burglar breaks in and steals from your home when a renter is staying there.
How Much Is Short-term Rental Insurance?
The cost of a commercial policy for a rental dwelling can be quite expensive, ranging anywhere from $2,000 - $3,000 annually — or about 2 - 3 times as much as a typical homeowners policy. As long as you’re renting out your dwelling (or a portion of it) for 62 days a year or less, the temporary rental to others coverage provides a much more reasonably priced alternative to a commercial policy if you need a quick solution when temporarily renting your home.
Should I Get Short Term Rental Insurance?
Short-term rental insurance for homeowners isn’t for use when you’re renting your house out on a week-to-week long-term basis, but for other brief periods of time. For starters, it’s important to understand that if you rent out your place to a tenant year-round, you’ll need landlord insurance. If you rent out your home for 62 days or less per year, you’ll want short-term home rental insuranceShort-term rental insurance policies for renters often limit the total number of days per policy period that your home can be rented out.
If you rent your home beyond that threshold, you may not be able to collect on a claim if the unexpected should happen. A better choice would be to pick up bed-and-breakfast or hotel insurance that’s designed to protect against issues which typically arise from rental properties that are rented on a longer-term basis.
Let Jeff Bergman - River Valley Insurance Services help you choose a policy that will fit your individual needs. Protecting your assets, whether personal, business, or both, is our goal. A well-chosen policy can lessen the impact of some of life’s most common, yet unforeseen perils. For our neighbors considering short- term- rental insurance in Stockton, CA. please consider calling, or sending us an online quote request!