Standard Home Insurance is arranged where the owner lives permanently in the property. Such a ‘standard home insurance’ policy can be extended to cover certain ‘lets’, within the Insurer’s appetite. The policy will then generally extend to allow basic Loss of Rent cover as well as Legal Liability (Public Liability) to tenants or visitors to the property. However, given that the owner no longer has the same control of her/his property when let out to tenants, a ‘standard home insurance policy’ (even where lets are permitted) may not be enough.
Property Owners All Risks insurance is a more extensive and broader form of cover for Landlords in this instance. For example, cover for Loss of Rent is broader (e.g. may provide 24 or 36 month cover instead of usual 12, and with higher cover value options also available e.g. 20%-50% of buildings sum), cover for Property Repairs & Maintenance persons necessary to keep the property in good order can be included and is broader. Extensions to cover such as trace & access, fire brigade charges, and breakage to glass have much higher limits applying, as have other sections.
The Insurer appetite for differing tenancy types is broader under All Risks cover wordings e.g. the ‘standard landlord’s home insurance’ policy may only accept professional or working tenant lets. A property owners All Risks policy will generally have acceptance for other tenancy types e.g. Student, Air BNB, Local Authority, County Council, HAP or RAS tenants. Furthermore, when the property becomes un-occupied, some ‘standard home insurance’ policies restrict cover immediately to Fire only, whereas the All Risks policy will generally provide full All Risks cover for another 30 days.
The All Risks policy will also generally allow renewal of the policy, even if the property continues to be un-occupied. Some ‘standard landlord home insurance’ policies have a restrictive ‘escape of water’ policy excess and cover conditions applying whereas an All Risks type policy generally applies a standard excess for all type claims. Many Landlord ‘standard home’ Insurance policies contain a condition that an electrical certificate for the property is obtained every 2-3 years (and documented), whereas some All Risks policies don’t contain such condition.
As a general comment, an All Risks policy is a more flexible, more tailored and more inclusive policy type for modern Landlords, albeit in some cases more expensive. Tenants are quite transient in the current environment and therefore a flexible insurance policy is what one needs, whether you are a professional or accidental Landlord.
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