Are You Home Sharing?
We have the right home sharing insurance for you!
Are you participating in home sharing programs such as Airbnb, Home Away or Virbo? If so, we have a home sharing insurance solution for you.
Today, we are referred to as the sharing economy. We share our cars and now we are sharing our homes.
If you are using your home for Airbnb, Home Away or VRBO programs, then you need to make sure that you have the appropriate home sharing insurance coverage before there is a loss.
A traditional homeowner’s insurance policy is not designed to provide coverage to people who are renting out their entire home or a portion of their home to short term renters.
According to the Airbnb’s website they have over 600,000 listings worldwide. That is a whole lot of sharing.
Let’s say that you have a “guest” from Airbnb staying at your home and they steal your TV and stereo equipment. Or they cause a fire because they were smoking in bed? Would your homeowners insurance provide coverage to your building or personal property?
Under the standard homeowners insurance policy, because the “guest” pays rent, the insurance company would consider them to be “roomers, boarder or tenants”, therefore their property would not be covered unless they were related to you. In addition, under the typical homeowner’s insurance policy, the landlord’s furnishings coverage will pay up to $2,500 for the appliances, carpeting and other household furnishings of the apartment on the residence premises for perils insured for under the policy. However, the attempted theft or loss of property that is likely to have been stolen from a resident would not be covered, whether the resident is there on an occasional or regular basis.
Also, we need to be concerned about the liability insurance coverage. If it determined that the renting or sharing of the home is a business, because the insured made more than $2,000 in the year preceding the policy term, then there are 3 exceptions that apply. First, if the rental is “occasional’, note the policy does not define this term. If you rent out a part of the premises to more no more than 2 roomers or boarders. But, let’s say that you are sharing your home and the person comes with 2 additional people, now the business exclusion would apply. When that exclusion applies it means that you have no coverage for liability insurance.
So let’s say that the boarder to your home falls down a flight of steps because they were slippery and there was no handrail. They broke their ankle and they cannot work for 6 weeks. If it is determined that you were operating a business based on the definition in the homeowners insurance policy there would not be coverage to pay the claim or to defend the claim. Or what if their 6 year old drowned in your pool? These devastating things happen every day, so don’t wait until there is a claim to find out that you don’t have the proper insurance coverage.
Make sure that you look at the contract with the home sharing program that you are signing up with some of them will provide insurance coverage for the landlord if the guest is injured during the stay, or cover the hosts for certain third party claims of property damage. However, there are still general exclusions on that policy for intentional acts, slander or defamation of character, pollution, asbestos and bed bugs to name a few. Don’t trust that because you signed up for these programs they are providing you all of the coverage you may need.
Huff Insurance now has insurance companies that want to write homes that are participating in home sharing programs. So give us a call today at 410-647-1111 to get more information and to make sure you are properly protected.