Published: February 2017
If you rent a home out to tenants, you likely have landlord insurance to help protect your rental property in case it is damaged by certain perils such as hail, wind or fire. But are the contents of the home protected, too? If you're considering furnishing a home that you rent out, would your landlord insurance policy cover the furniture you provide for your tenants?
Whether you have a fully furnished rental property or your unit has a few basic appliances, a landlord insurance policy may help cover items you have provided for tenant use in the rental home, says the Insurance Information Institute (III).
The III says that landlord insurance typically provides coverage for structural damage to the property that is caused by certain risks included in your policy. If you've left items in the home for tenants to use, the III notes that these items may also be covered — including furniture. So if there is a fire in the home that damages or destroys your table and chairs, your landlord insurance policy may help to pay to replace or repair these items.
Your landlord insurance may help pay to repair or replace an appliance, such as a fridge or washing machine, if it is damaged by a covered peril, like a fire, says the III. If you've provided equipment for the tenants to use in maintaining the property, such as a lawnmower or snowblower, these items may also be covered by landlord insurance.
It's important to keep in mind that coverage limits — the maximum your policy will pay toward a covered loss — will apply. You'll also typically need to pay a deductible before your insurance coverage kicks in. Your insurance agent can help you set the coverage limit and deductible that fit your needs.
Landlord insurance typically helps protect items you provide to service your rental unit. However, belongings not specifically related to the rental unit may not be covered by your landlord insurance policy. For example, if you store some of your personal items within the unit, these may not be included in your landlord coverage.
Although appliances may be covered if they're damaged by certain perils, landlord insurance does not provide coverage for maintenance and breakdowns. So if the furnace goes out or the refrigerator needs repairs, you will most likely have to pay for the repairs yourself.
Vandalism and burglary are also not typically covered by standard landlord insurance policies. However, you may be able to purchase additional coverage to help protect you in case your rental home is vandalized or items you provide for tenant use are stolen from the unit.
Even if you provide a fully furnished home for your renters, they will likely bring their own belongings into the home as well. It's important to keep in mind that landlord insurance typically does not help protect a renter's belongings. So if a pipe bursts in the home, damaging a chair that belongs to your renter, landlord insurance may help cover damage to the home itself or furnishings owned by the landlord, but probably won't pay for damage to furniture or other belongings owned by the tenant.
If you are renting out a furnished home or are thinking of including a few items to help service your rental unit, be sure you know what your landlord insurance policy may help protect. A
local agent can help your review your current landlord coverage.