A landlord's guide to what landlord insurance is, what it covers and how much it costs.
What is landlord insurance?
Landlord insurance is to protect landlords from the risks of renting out a property.
You do not have to get landlord insurance, but it can save you a lot of money if something happens.
It often includes a mix of other insurances such as:
rental protection insurance
home emergency cover
What the insurance covers depends on the policy you take out, so make sure it covers what you need it to.
Types of landlord insurance
Buildings insurance covers damage to the structure or total rebuild of your property.
For example, damage to your house could be caused by fires, floods or subsidence.
Lenders will usually require you to have buildings insurance to get a buy to let mortgage.
Learn more about what’s covered by buildings insurance.
Contents insurance covers the fixtures and fittings that you own in a property.
It does not cover items that your tenants own, so they’ll need their own contents insurance policy.
Read about what’s covered by contents insurance.
Rental protection insurance covers you if a tenant cannot pay their rent.
It also often covers legal expenses if you ever need to evict a tenant or repossess the property.
We know that many landlords worry about what happens if their property is empty. Some rental protection insurance covers you for times when you’re between tenants.
Having rental protection insurance is a good idea if you need the rent to be able to afford your mortgage payments.
Liability insurance protects you if your tenant or a visitor gets hurt in your property.
If you’re seen as responsible for an injury, you may have to pay compensation which can be costly. Liability insurance offers a high level of cover, even into the millions.
Empty property cover will protect you if you’re between tenants.
Without empty property cover, your home may not be covered if it’s damaged while it’s empty. This is because it’s more at risk of things like water damage and break ins.
If you know the property will be empty, it’s best to check if your home insurance policy will still cover you.
Home emergency cover can help with the costs of emergency repairs. This includes expensive out of hours callouts.
These policies often offer you emergency help 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
It can cover emergencies such as:
plumbing and heating issues
door and window issues
drains, pipes and sewage issues
What does landlord insurance cover?
What landlord insurance covers depends on the policy you take out.
Most landlord insurance policies will cover:
loss of rent
compensation for injuries to tenants or visitors
legal costs to get back unpaid rent
Landlord insurance cost
The cost of landlord insurance depends on what you want to cover and what amount of cover you need.
They may consider your claim history as well as the history of the property.
The average cost of a basic landlord insurance policy in 2020 according to NimbleFins was £170.¹
The cost of landlord insurance may also depend on:
your tenants - renting to students may be seen as more of a risk than to a professional couple
type of property such as flat, new build
how many items you’re insuring
the level of excess you want
extras such as legal expenses
You may be able to lower the cost of your insurance by:
keeping your property in a good condition
adding security measures such as cameras, alarms and quality locks
looking at package policies, some providers may offer you a better deal
keeping the property occupied or reducing the length of time it’ll be empty so it’s at less risk of damage or vandalism
working out what level of cover you need for example checking your rebuild cost
Make sure you cover all your insurance needs. It could cost you more if something happens that you’re not covered for.
Compare landlord insurance
To find the best landlord insurance for you, it’s a good idea to shop around.
To compare landlord insurance you can:
use a comparison site
check insurance companies online or by phone as some may not be on comparison sites
go through an insurance broker
go through a financial adviser
If you’re comparing make sure to check:
the maximum cover they offer
exclusions - some providers may not pay out if your tenants are unemployed
Landlord insurance quotes
Many sites will give you a landlord insurance quote.
They’ll work this out by asking you a few questions such as:
What type of tenants are you renting to?
What is the property’s postcode?
What type of property is it?
When was the property built?
How long have you owned this property?
The best landlord insurance
The best landlord insurance depends on what your insurance needs are.
Make sure you know what you want to cover and the level of cover before focusing on how much each policy costs.
Some sites rank insurance companies. But bear in mind that they may base their order on how much commission they get.
Money’s² most popular landlord insurance companies, based on clicks, are:
Alan Boswell Group
You can also look for the best provider for you by checking customer ratings.
The top rated companies for landlord insurance on Trustpilot³ are:
Simply Life and Mortgages LTD
Premier Insurance Consultants
Frontier Home Insurance