It’s very easy to forget why property insurance is so important, it becomes a certain amount of money leaving your bank each month to give you peace of mind, but do any of us actually plan for a claim?
Because we have our insurance, we all think it will be okay if the worst should happen, but what we really need to do, is prepare our finances and future for losing that investment. As a Landlord, there is always the possibility that tenants stop paying rent or a pipe should burst in one of your houses, which ultimately results in you losing your income.
So if you’re a landlord with no back up properties or an extra job, a house fire could ruin your life as well as your career. It’s a frightening prospect when you have a family to support, so what can you do to secure your future if you lost your property?
You need to be able to run your business through the rough patch, keeping the income flowing is essential. This is why proper landlord insurance is so important. Depending on your circumstances, if you’re waiting for the house to be repaired, rebuilt or a pay out, you shouldn’t stop dead.
Keep planning for the future, communicate with your tenants in hope they will come back when the property is rebuilt, or find new tenants for your new investments. Once you have an understanding of where you will be going next, such as buying a new property or restoring the old one, you will be back on your feet without a pause in income because you kept the ball rolling.
You should plan your next few months. If the property is getting rebuilt, how long is the work going to take? Will you need to get another income in that time? Do you have the proper insurance to cover all for he costs?
With all of this done in advance of an accident, you will be well prepared for the worst to happen. Which is where problems with underinsured landlords occur. With people concentrating on saving, they try desperately to get lower premiums, rather than paying for the correct cover with additional features such as loss of rent and alternative accommodation.
Being honest, there is no point paying anything if you’re not paying the correct amount for sufficient cover. Don’t underestimate how much of a difference the little things can make, just be honest, and it will be your saviour if you have a disaster with your property, that’s what insurance is for after all.
So, why we’re thinking ahead, there are always ways of preventing things like this from happening in the first place. Be sure you implement the following checks and procedures.
Follow the correct Fire Safety Standards
Fire Brigades issue Fire Safety Standards in order to ensure that homes are equipped for the event of a fire. Most fires can be prevented, and fatalities completely avoided if homes have the correct protocol in place to evacuate a property. You can find out all of the precautions by reading our article Why Is It Important to License Your Let Property.
Gas and Boiler Checks
A problem with the boiler can put anybody out of pocket, but not only that, the gas supplied to the boiler can be deadly. Carbon Monoxide poisoning occurs when you gas appliances are not serviced annually and can have devastating effects.
Not to be underestimated, communicating with your tenant can avoid disasters. If you have strict rules in pace for the safety of the property and its tenants, then you can help avoid accidental fires and cooking accidents. We have a Complete Tenants List that you can give to your tenants or place in your homes to ensure the safety rules are accessible to avoid any accidents.
Ensure that your home has all of the right security measures. The more secure your home is, the lower your premiums. Have good window locks, unique door keys and educate your tenants about the importance of keeping their home secure. You will reduce the chances of a burglary and theft.
If your concern is that your tenant stops paying, the best way to prevent this happening is to carry out a credit check. You can request bank statements to prove that your tenant has a regular income and find out if they have any unpaid debts that could result in your losing you rent. You can also get Rent Guarantee Insurance to cover you for your losses. If you are having trouble with a tenant who won’t pay their rent, you can read When a Tenant Won’t Pay Rent, for legal advice.
You can access The Environment Agency maps which identify the risk of some properties have due to their location. This can be due to the likelihood of natural hazards or weather probability. For those who live on the coast, it goes without saying since the floods of 2014, that your property is in more of a danger during the Winter months. You should reconsider buying a house in such a high risk area if you rely on the property for your financial income.
Not only the coast is a risk, but the countryside and cities can all have their own circumstances, whether it be subsidence, trees, rivers or weather risks, a lot of research into the location can make you less likely to suffer a natural disaster.
Proper Insurance Cover
The majority of insurance claims are rejected because the correct details have not been disclosed and people do not have the adequate cover. Whether you’re going to be on holiday for a while or are building an extension, many things can increase the risks to your property and so your insurance provider must know about them.
Unfortunately if you have already experienced a disaster, you may some hard times ahead, but in future you can prepare yourself and be sure you have the proper insurance. In hindsight it seems obvious, but not all of us have the financial stability to afford a house we own being destroyed or damaged with no insurance cover.
You can find out more about the importance of insurance and advice on how to get a successful claim by reading out blog. By following UKinsuranceNET on Facebook and Twitter you can keep up with our latest posts and updates.