If you’re a landlord, you face your share of risks. You may worry about protecting your investment from insurance claims, property damage and lawsuits with tenants. Here are some tips from our friends and LandlordsNY Insurance Expert @Mackoul Risk Solutions that can help you mitigate some of the risks that you face as a property landlord.
CHOOSE THE RIGHT INSURANCE COVERAGE
When becoming a landlord there are many different factors to consider. The most important, other than choosing a good tenant, would be making sure that you have the correct insurance coverage in place. Most tenant or landlord policies come with a higher rate since the home is not owner-occupied. The chances of having a claim at a non-owner occupied home rise by about 40%.
Do not wait until a loss occurs before you determine whether you have the right insurance for your property. Review your current policy and property risks with your insurance agent, and then discuss coverage options that fit your needs.
Here are a few things to consider when reviewing your insurance coverage:
- Make sure the home is insured to value, otherwise you could have a large coinsurance penalty.
- Have sufficient loss of rents coverage that matches your rent roll for the year. If your tenant is displaced because of a covered loss, you will still need to pay your bills.
- Have a minimum of $500k in liability coverage. This will protect you if you are sued or brought into a lawsuit by your tenant or a visitor.
- Hiring a property management firm is a great idea for tenant occupied homes.
USE A TENANT SCREENING PROCESS
To avoid fair housing complaints, you should create a fair application procedure. We recommend that you create a consistent screening process that you use for all prospective tenants. If you have to reject a tenant, make sure you are only rejecting them based on legitimate reasons.
MAKE YOUR PROPERTY SAFE
Keep your property safe for tenants and visitors. Research the legal requirements for repairing and maintaining your property, and then follow them.
AVOID FAIR HOUSING VIOLATIONS
Federal and state laws prevent the use of discriminatory practices in housing when selecting a tenant. The Fair Housing Act and the Fair Housing Amendments Acts prohibit discrimination based on race or color, national origin, sex, religion, familial status, and disability.If you’re interested in learning more about the insurance coverage that you need as a landlord, contact Mackoul Risk Solutions.