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UK tourism boosts demands for holiday lets

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Nearly 30 million foreign visitors come to the UK each year, said Landlord News on the 24th of August 2018, in a reminder about the importance of arranging adequate holiday let insurance if you own such property.

Having enjoyed the rare delights of a blissfully sunny summer this year, plus Brexit, the number of Britons opting for a staycation over travel abroad also looks to swell to record numbers. According to Sykes Holiday Cottages – publishers of a new “staycation index” – some 74% of all adults had planned a staycation during 2018 – and the exceptional weather this year is almost certain to have seen a significant increase in the number of bookings for holiday lets (which had already climbed by 24% during 2017’s much poorer summer).

Thankfully, the demand for additional holiday accommodation is being met not only by landlords of conventional holiday lets but by relative newcomers in the shape of casual landlords who are now hosting guests through the website Airbnb.

Holiday let insurance

Your holiday let probably serves at least two purposes: a second home to which you and your family escape from time to time; and a property which earns some extra cash by letting it to paying guests when you are not using it. 

There are even tax breaks for which you might qualify by letting your furnished holiday home for a minimum number of days each year – you can read about those rule here.

There are also likely to be significant off-season spells when your holiday let is unoccupied either by you or short-term tenants and instead stands empty.

These mixed uses of your second home make it necessary to arrange specialist holiday let insurance that takes into account its various uses – sometimes occupied by its owners and sometimes by tenants. To that extent, holiday let insurance falls somewhere between regular home insurance and the landlord insurance that is essential once you assume the role of landlord. Our Knowledge Base includes a quick guide to what you need to know about holiday home insurance.

Airbnb insurance

Many homeowners – or even tenants, for that matter – might have seized on this summer’s upsurge in holiday bookings to let spare rooms, or even the whole of their property, to guests through Airbnb.

When it comes to insuring any holiday let arranged through Airbnb – even if it is just a spare room in the home you continue to occupy – even more care may need to be taken.

There have been a number of press reports about the damage caused by irresponsible guests using the accommodation arranged through the website and our article on the 25th of January 2018 detailed the inadequacies of the so-called Airbnb Host Guarantee facility offered by the organisers.

Airbnb itself recognises that the Host Guarantee – offering up to $1 million in compensation for certain types of loss or damage caused by Airbnb guests – is no substitute for appropriate property insurance to protect homeowning or tenant hosts.

The answer to that need, therefore, may be met by our specialist Airbnb insurance products.