February 2020 - Pikl

Will HomeAway cover me if something goes wrong?

Estimated read time: 8 minutes

If you rent out your property to guests through HomeAway, you might be wondering what you are covered for if a guest has an injury or causes damage to your home. Whilst HomeAway does offer some level of cover, it’s important to understand what this protects you for and what it won’t or you could end up seriously out of pocket.

Does HomeAway offer insurance?

If you list your property on their website, HomeAway does provide insurance but this is only for liability claims, which are designed to cover you against risks that you as a host may end up being held responsible for. HomeAway offer up to $1 million (or the equivalent UK amount) of cover per listing free to all of its hosts. This makes their cover similar Airbnb’s Host Protection Insurance, which you can find out more about in our Airbnb guide. The insurance provided by HomeAway covers liability claims brought against the host for incidents such as:

Guest injuries. For example, if your guest fell down the stairs and hurt themselves they may hold you responsible and decide to take legal action.

A guest damaging 3rd party property. An example of where this could be relevant could be your guest lighting up a cigarette and accidentally setting fire to your neighbours property.

A guest injuring a 3rd party. Think back to the fire scenario above. If the neighbour was injured in the fire then they may decide to hold you liable.

What HomeAway does not cover.

Given that HomeAway only covers liability claims, this does not make it comparable to what you would expect from a home or landlord insurance policy. Here are some notable things that HomeAway does not cover:

Damages above $1 million. You might be thinking this is unlikely that a claim could cost this much but it depends on the type of claim. If a guest is injured badly and unable to work again, the costs could mount up. A serious injury could require lifetime care. If you factor in loss of potential earnings, some claims could cost more than $1 million, which could mean you may have to fit the bill.

Damage to your own property is not covered. If a guest burns your house down, you’d need your insurer to cover you for this if you don’t want to pay for damages out of your own pocket. However, many insurers will not cover claims caused by paying guests (more on this below).

If the guest injures you then you won’t be able to use HomeAway’s insurance to take legal action against the guest.

If the damage/injury caused by the guest is deemed to be deliberate or ‘malicious’ then this won’t be covered either. HomeAway’s insurance is designed to cover you against scenarios that are caused accidentally.

You won’t be covered if you have been deemed to have acted negligibly. This is a fairly standard principle followed by most insurers. However, it isn’t entirely clear how ‘negligible’ has been defined. This could give them wiggle room in deciding whether to cover your claim or not.

What to do if you need more cover.

If you are worried about whether you have the right level of cover, the next step to take is to talk to your insurer. However, we spoke to top UK insurers that confirmed that most do not provide adequate cover for Airbnb, HomeAway or similar platforms. Our Airbnb and home insurance article discusses this subject in more detail and is a good place to start before you contact your insurer. If your home is covered under a second home or holiday home insurance policy, your cover for guest related claims may still be inadequate and so it’s important to check with your insurer first. If you have already spoken to your insurer and you are not happy with your level of insurance cover, a specialist insurance policy may be able to fill this gap.

What does Pikl cover?

Pikl provide specialist insurance for short-term letting, including cover for properties that are let out on websites such as HomeAway. If you already have insurance elsewhere, we offer a ‘Top-Up’ insurance policy. Your insurer can still continue to cover you whilst our cover can insure your home for any claims caused by your guests. You’ll need to let your insurer know that you are intending to do this but alternatively, we can also cover your main home or landlord insurance as well as cover for your guests. Our insurance for when you have short-term guests can cover you for:

  • Public liability including cover for guest accidents involving bodily injury.
  • Legal cover to defend or pursue legal claims against guests.
  • Accidental, malicious damage and theft cover if caused by a guest.
  • Alternative accommodation for you or your guest if your property is being fixed as the result of a guest related claim.
  • Fire and escape of water damage caused by a guest.
  • Loss of keys and replacement locks cover if renting out your entire property.

The above is an example of some of the cover we offer. If you are not comfortable with the level of cover HomeAway or your insurer provide, getting a specialist insurance policy is a relatively straightforward way of covering this gap in insurance.

The truth about landlord insurance and Airbnb.

Estimated Read: 8 minutes.

Perhaps you are a landlord that uses your property as an Airbnb during tenancies. Or maybe you allow your tenant to sublet on Airbnb. If either of these apply to you, you might not be covered by your landlord insurer.

What landlord insurers think about Airbnb.

We spoke to the UK’s top landlord insurers and came back with some interesting results. In a survey of insurers that we conducted, we found some concerning trends:

Half of landlord insurers we spoke to said they wouldn’t cover Airbnb claims even if they occurred in between tenancies. That could mean no payout on your claim despite having no tenant in your property. An overwhelming 75% of landlord insurers we spoke to said they would cancel a customers policy if an Airbnb claim occurred during a tenancy.

What could that mean for me?

If an Airbnb guest damaged your property, you might have the pay for the repairs yourself if your insurer will not cover you. Worse, if your insurer decided to ‘void’ your policy (cancel it from the start date as though it never existed in the first place), you may struggle to get insurance after this.

What might I not be covered for?

Typical things not covered by insurers when it comes to Airbnb or similar platforms are:

Accidental or malicious damage by your guest. If you regularly do Airbnb, the chances of this happening could increase.

Theft by a guest. Theft is usually only covered if there has been forced entry.

A guest getting injured and holding you responsible. If your landlord insurer does not cover you for Airbnb then you might not have liability cover to help you if this happened.

A guest damaging someone else’s property. Like the guest injury scenario, you might not have liability cover for this if a 3rd party sued you for damage caused by your guest.

If your guests injure someone else then you might not be covered for this either.

Why don’t landlord insurers cover Airbnb?

Long term tenancies typically require a minimum period of 6 months and so the risk could be seen as more predictable. By also letting out your property on Airbnb, there could be an increase in people using the property, which could increase the likelihood of a claim occurring. Unlike long term tenancies, stringent background checks of guests are not a requirement on platforms like Airbnb.

What actions should I take next?

Inform your insurer.

Ask what they will and will not cover you for.

Think about when you are likely to use your property as an Airbnb. Whether this is done in between tenancies or during a tenancy could affect whether your insurers is likely to cover you or not.

Finding a landlord insurer that also provides adequate cover can be difficult. A specialist provider such as Pikl could provide cover for both your standard landlord insurance and Airbnb (or similar platforms) should you require this.

What does Pikl cover?

Pikl provide specialist insurance for short-term letting, including cover for properties that are let out on websites such as Airbnb. If you already have insurance elsewhere, we offer a ‘Top-Up’ insurance policy. Your insurer can still continue to cover you whilst our cover can insure your home for any claims caused by your guests. You will need to let your insurer know that you are intending to do this but alternatively, we can also cover your landlord insurance as well as cover for your guests. Our insurance for when you have short-term guests can cover you for:

  • Public liability including cover for guest accidents involving bodily injury.
  • Legal cover to defend or pursue legal claims against guests.
  • Accidental, malicious damage and theft cover if caused by a guest.
  • Alternative accommodation for you or your guest if your property is being fixed as the result of a guest related claim.
  • Fire and escape of water damage caused by a guest.
  • Loss of keys and replacement locks cover if renting out your entire property.

The above is an example of some of the cover we offer. If you are not comfortable with the level of cover your insurer provides, getting a specialist insurance policy is a relatively straightforward way of covering this gap in insurance.

Running an Airbnb vs becoming a Landlord: Which one is best for you?

Estimated Read: 15 minutes

Maybe you are a landlord considering moving into Airbnb. Or maybe you are wondering whether you should be a landlord instead. There are benefits and disadvantages to doing either. Choosing which option is best for you may depend on what you are trying to achieve and what type of work you are willing to do.

You may make a higher return on investment with Airbnb.

Given the short-term nature of Airbnb, hosts can often charge guests a higher proportional rate than they would if they were a regular landlord with tenants. Take London as an example. Airbnb’s UK Insights report confirmed that the typical Host in London earns £2,600 a year with 35 days being the typical amount of nights hosted per year for a typical listing. That’s £74.28 a night for the typical host. According to a report by the Office for National Statistics in December 2019, the median monthly rental income for long term tenancies in London was £1,450. Comparing the potential annual income you could get from both figures (before tax and other costs are deducted), you get the following:

Potential annual income from Airbnb (if rented out 365 days a year): £27,112.20

Potential annual income from long term tenants: £17,400.

It worth noting that there are lots of caveats to consider here. Whether you can get a high occupancy rate through Airbnb will depend on your location and having it occupied every day of the year might be unlikely. If you were are doing everything yourself, it could be an enormous amount of work if you spent every other day meeting guests and cleaning the property before the next ones arrive. Local restrictions like the London 90 day rule (limiting how many days you can host to 90 days a year) will also affect how much income you can earn. However, when simply looking at the potential ratio for return on investment, there may be significant benefits to running an Airbnb.

You may have more spare time with long-term tenants.

Once you are all set up and have tenants in the property, the day to day management of being a landlord could be easier than running an Airbnb. Provided that you are following all of the required regulations, have a good tenant and your property is safe and well maintained, your involvement would mainly be needed when a problem arises. Many landlords hire an agent to manage the day to day running of their properties, giving them even more free time. Contrast this with running an Airbnb where you may be responsible for meeting guests, cleaning the property and dealing with day to day issues on a regular basis. If you are considering running a full-time Airbnb or have multiple Airbnb properties however, you may also want to consider hiring an agent to manage this for you to free up your time.

There may be less regulatory hurdles if you run an Airbnb.

To get set up as a landlord, you will need to conduct risk assessments, health and safety checks and make sure your property is safe and well maintained. You will also have to adhere to regulations regarding tenant rights and handling deposits (check out our article on becoming a landlord for more details on what is involved). The Airbnb industry by contrast is still an emerging industry and is yet to catch up. You will still have to follow basic regulations such as for fire and safety and it makes sense to keep your property in a good shape if you want to attract more guests (see our article, on how to be an Airbnb host for more information on how to get started). You will also have to follow less regulations than if you were a regular landlord. As calls for more regulations around Airbnb grow however, it also makes sense to focus on providing your hosts with a safe, comfortable experience. Doing this may also improve your bottom line.

Landlords may have a more stable income.

Both landlords and Airbnb hosts may experience periods where their properties are unoccupied. However, once a landlord gets a tenant in their property, the typical minimum tenancy period is 6-12 months. Give the short-term nature of Airbnb hosting, Airbnb hosts may have more periods where no one stays at their property. How often this happens may depend on factors such as the location of your home, how good you are at promoting your property and general market trends. If your property is in a popular holiday destination then you may be affected by seasonality as well. Properties situated in big cities like London may be less affected by this. Crises such as economic shocks may also convince guests to travel less. In times of uncertainty, it could be tempting to stick to more traditional property sectors than short-term lets.

Running an Airbnb may give you a more flexible lifestyle.

The beauty of listing your home on sites like Airbnb, HomeAway and Booking.com is that you can list or delist your properties from their websites when needed. Don’t feel like having guests over? No problem. But if you are a landlord with a tenant on a fixed term, assured shorthold tenancy then you will have a lot less flexibility. Typically, you will have got them to sign a contract allowing them to reside in the property for a minimum period of 6-12 months and getting them to leave during this period is not straightforward. As the landlord you must give a legal reason that a tenant must leave the property during the tenancy (such as rent arrears) and would have to get a court order to evict them. If you put a premium on flexibility then running an Airbnb property will make more sense for you.

Being a landlord may expose yourself to less risk.

Landlords and their agents often require tenant background checks to minimise the risk of things like rent arrears. Given the long term nature of tenancies, doing this makes sense and the tenant may have more of an incentive to look after the property if they are living there. If you are running an Airbnb however, you won’t have time to conduct these types of background checks. If you accept automatic bookings, you may struggle to do any kind of checks at all. Hosts can require guests to complete Airbnb’s guest verification service. However, this type of check is basic and will not be as thorough. If you are running an Airbnb, you run the risk of having guests who are not who they say they are. Not only that, without extensive background checks you will not know what type of person you have allowed into your property. In addition, if you have a high turnover of guests there could be a greater chance that you may have to claim.

Airbnb is a growing market.

Since its UK operation was founded in 2012, Airbnb has generated an estimated £3.5 billion to the UK economy, according to Airbnb’s latest Insights Report in 2018. Several regions within the UK have seen over a 70% increase in the growth of inbound Airbnb guest arrivals. Companies like HomeAway and Booking.com have also entered the market, giving hosts a wider range of platforms to market their properties on. Whilst there will always be a demand for the long-term rental sector, the growth for short-term rentals may be appealing to landlords that have seen their returns on investment diminish in the face of subsequent regulations by different governments. With the Covid-19 crisis impacting world trade at the time of writing it looks like this growth has been halted abruptly. However, once this crisis is over it inevitable that people will start travelling again.

Landlords may have less trouble with mortgages and insurance.

The landlord market is well established and there are several buy to let mortgage and insurance products available to landlords. By contrast, most home insurance policies don’t cover Airbnb. If you have a landlord insurance policy, whether your insurer is prepared to cover you for Airbnb may depend on whether you do this in between tenancies or are intending to do this during a tenancy. Unfortunately, most landlord insurers do not provide adequate cover for platforms like Airbnb either. Specialist insurance companies like Pikl can cover you is you are not covered for this. If you have multiple properties, you may want to consider checking out our portfolio insurance.

Many mortgage providers including buy to let mortgages do not allow short-term guests in their mortgage terms. However, there are now some specialist mortgage providers starting to cover this. Speak to your provider if you are unclear regarding the terms of your mortgage.

Which option is better? It depends on what you are looking for.

Which option suits you will depend on your goals and the lifestyle you want to live. If you are planning on doing one or the other, you may want to write down a list of what is important to you. There are lots of variables to consider. Broadly speaking though, the decision could be broken down as follows:

If you are already a landlord, you could try Airbnb in between tenancies to maximise your level of income (provided your mortgage provider and insurer is comfortable with this). For those with a mixed portfolio of properties, running some properties as full-time Airbnb homes and others as traditional rental properties may be a good way to balance any risk with the potential gains in income.

The quick guide to landlord insurance

Estimated read: 5 minutes

If you are a landlord, you might be wondering why you might need specific insurance. It is not compulsory, but there are several good reasons to considering getting landlord cover to help you stay protected. We discuss what landlord insurance can cover and some other important points to consider.

Some mortgage providers require it.

If a buy to let mortgage provider has lent you thousands of pounds, there is a good chance they will want you to insure it. Many require you to get insurance as part of their mortgage terms.

Protect your investment.

Your property is worth a lot of money.  Buildings insurance can protect you against things like flood or fire and damage that may cost you to put right if you did not have cover. If your property is furnished, contents insurance can cover you if things like furniture or appliances are damaged. If you do not insure yourself, you may have to pay thousands of pounds of damage if something goes wrong.

Insure yourself against loss of rent.

What would you do if your tenant stopped paying rent? Some landlord insurance packages offer rent protection insurance in the event the unexpected occurs and your tenant is unable to pay. If you financed your property with a buy to let mortgage, you could lose it if you are unable to keep up with the payments.  

Cover against legal costs and injury claims.

No matter how diligent you are, accidents can still happen. If a tenant had an accident on your property and they held you liable, they may decide to sue you for negligence. Liability cover can protect for this if it does happen. If you are held liable for a criminal offence, you may be able to get legal cover to defend you in court and cover you for legal costs. Legal cover may also cover some of the costs of evicting tenants.

Cover for home emergencies.

If your insurance package includes home emergency cover, you can get protected for emergencies in your property. Typical events covered could be things like your boiler going down, an electricity failure or blocked drains. This type of cover could be especially useful in cases where paying for an emergency call out from a tradesman would otherwise cost you £100s.

Accidental damage.

If your property is regularly occupied with tenants, there is a high chance at some point of your tenant damaging your property, such as a spillages and breakages. Bear in mind that the damage would have to be accidental in order to be covered.

What standard landlord insurance might not cover.

Cover will vary from insurer to insurer. There are some things however that are generally not covered or that you may need to notify your insurer about:

  • If your property will be unoccupied for an extended period of time, not all insurers cover this.
  • If your tenant type changes. Some insurers only cover specific types of tenants (such as professional tenants or students). If you are thinking of getting a different type of tenant in after your cover has started, be sure to let your insurer know.
  • Subletting your property. This is where the property is leased out to someone other than the tenant. Most insurance policies (and mortgages) do not allow this. If you or your tenant is intending to sublet, be sure to check that you are covered.
  • If you intend to also use your property as an Airbnb, many landlord insurers will not cover this and you may need to find cover through a specialist insurance broker. Check out our landlord article about Airbnb.
  • If your house is in multiple occupation (HMO). This is a property owned by a private landlord and shared by multiple people. It generally applies to properties with shared communal areas where the number of tenants would be considered as a multiple household living under one roof. This could apply to a number of different properties including bedsits, shared houses and hostels. If you are considering turning your property into an HMO, you will need specialist insurance for this.
  • Tenant belongings. This wouldn’t normally be covered by landlord insurance. Your tenants will be responsible for insuring their own possessions.

Think about what you need cover for.

The important thing to think about is what you actually need cover for. Is loss of rent protection important to you? Are you worried about tenants accidentally damaging your property? Not all landlord insurance policies have the same cover. Make a list of everything that is important to you and this should help you when you go shopping for insurance.

Airbnb vs the alternatives. Which Vacation rental site is the best?

Estimated Read: 10 minutes.

There are now several vacation rental platforms that compete with Airbnb. Given the variety of choice that is now available, choosing the right one can be confusing. Lets look at the pros and cons of using each one.

Airbnb

Whilst they are not the oldest of all of the companies on here, they are the most established. The dominant player with a huge global reach, Airbnb has become a household name.

Advantages of using Airbnb:

It’s booking fees are relatively modest compared to other platforms at 3% (with some exceptions).

Unlike some other platforms it does offer some protection to its hosts if something goes wrong (e.g. if a guest damages your house or is injured).

Airbnb allows you to rent out just a room unlike some other platforms. This is great for people that aren’t ready to rent out their entire property or are just looking to test the waters.

It is the big player in the market. Its name is global and you could have a potentially larger reach of guests that could be interested in your property.

Disadvantages of using Airbnb:

The protection offered by Airbnb is limited. If you rely on them to cover you, you could be seriously out of pocket if they do not pay out on a claim.

Unless you are a hotel or hospitality business, Airbnb charges guests a service fee to cover the costs of things like credit card fees and customer support.

Being global could mean that you have more competition. This is better for guests but could be tougher for hosts in terms of maximising the number of bookings they get. If your property is in a popular area then this may apply to you.

HomeAway and VRBO.

Owned by the Expedia Group, HomeAway was actually founded 4 years before Airbnb. In 2015, Expedia also acquired VRBO.

Advantages of using HomeAway and VRBO:

Like Airbnb, HomeAway and VBRO also offer some protection to its hosts such as if a guest is injured or if a guest damages someone else’s property.

It also has worldwide reach.

Both HomeAway and VRBO give you the option to pay annual subscriptions.

As the Airbnb industry grows and becomes widely seen as an acceptable alternative to hotels, more and more people may seek Airbnb alternatives. Savvy hosts may also look to use alternative platforms that already have brand recognition.

Disadvantages of using HomeAway and VRBO:

The protection offered by both platforms is also limited and unlike Airbnb they don’t cover any host property damage. Check out our HomeAway article for more info.

Unlike Airbnb you can only rent out your entire property. If you can only rent out your room then HomeAway and VRBO will not be the platforms for you.

Their host fees are higher than Airbnb’s.

Booking.com

A massive player in the hotel and travel industry, Booking.com now also allows hosts to list their property online and compete with hotels.

Advantages of using Booking.com:

Booking.com charge a single fee, which makes it more straightforward than other platforms that have different charges.

They are a household name in the accommodation industry, meaning that you will have visibility to a wide audience.

Unlike websites like Airbnb, Booking.com also lists hotels on its platform. This could give you exposure to a different audience to other platforms.

Booking.com does not charge guests any additional fees unlike platforms such as Airbnb, which could make it more attractive to some guests.

Disadvantages of using Booking.com:

You will get no insurance protection if something goes wrong.

You can only list entire homes.

At 15%, their commission is the highest of the platforms listed here.

Being listed alongside hotels could be a double-edged sword as you could be competing with them.

TripAdvisor and FlipKey

Whilst being primarily well known across the world as a social media travel review website, TripAdvisor also allows visitors to look at comparison tools for booking holidays and accommodation. FlipKey is a vacation rental website like Airbnb. It was acquired by TripAdvisor in 2008. HouseTrip is similar to FlipKey and was acquired by TripAdvisor in 2016.

Advantages of using TripAdvisor, FlipKey or HouseTrip:

TripAdvisor is a big company with millions of visitors to its site.

TripAdvisor is already a household name in the travel industry, which will help it attract potential guests. This brand recognition also benefits owners listing their property on FlipKey and HouseTrip.

On TripAdvisor you can also book hotels and flights, which could give your property exposure to a more diverse audience than on websites like Airbnb.

Owners on FlipKey and HouseTrip may face less competition in the UK as they are less well known.

Disadvantages of using TripAdvisor and FlipKey:

No protection is offered to owners if their property is damaged by a guest or if a claim is brought against them.

You can only list your entire home.

Like Airbnb, TripAdvisor, FlipKey and HouseTrip charge additional fees to guests, which could put them off.

FkipKey and House Trip are less well known in the UK. You could have less guest bookings.

On TripAdvisor, you will be competing against hotels.

Which platform is the best?

It really depends on your situation on what your goals are. Your market research and the type of guest you want to attract could also decide which platform you decide to use. If you are completely new to hosting, you may want to check out our guide on being an Airbnb host.

Renting out a room, just starting out or want your property to be viewed by lots of guests?

Airbnb is a good place to start if you fall into this category. It is the only place listed here that allows you to rent out just your room, it has instant brand recognition and millions of guests worldwide that use its site every year.

Do you want to use a platform that offers protection if something goes wrong?

Airbnb and HomeAway are the only platforms at the time of writing that offer some protection. HomeAway however, offer no cover for damage to the host’s property unlike Airbnb. Overall, the cover that both platforms is limited. You may also want to consider taking out specialist insurance with a broker such as Pikl as most home and landlord insurers will not provide adequate insurance cover either.

Looking for an Airbnb alternative or more flexible fee options?

Whilst less well known than Airbnb, HomeAway and VRBO are also big players in this market with lots of guests also using their service. Their annual subscription option for hosts is a nice option if you are tempted by the idea of paying a lump sum annual fee rather than paying a commission per booking.

Want a service that doesn’t charge guests fees?

Booking.com is the platform to use although its host fees are quite steep at 15% per booking.

Are fees important to you?

If you just want to use the site with the lowest commission then Airbnb and TripAdvisor are the cheapest. Booking.com is the highest but as you would be competing with hotels, customers on there may expect to pay higher fees.

Are you trying to reach out to customers that would ordinarily use hotels?

Booking.com and TripAdvisor are the clear winners here.

Looking for less competition?

The competition you will face with other owners will depend on other factors such as where your property is based. However, you may want to consider using well known websites in the UK such as FlipKey and HouseTrip if you’re facing stiff competition elsewhere.

Looking for a platform with brand recognition?

Airbnb is a household name and HomeAway also has a worldwide following. Booking.com and TripAdvisor are already household names. If a platform with brand recognition is your main concern, you probably could not go wrong with any of these.

Are you doing this as a full-time business?

You may want to consider using as many websites as possible to maximise the number of bookings you get. Don’t forget to sync your calendars so that you don’t overbook. You will also need to factor in the different costs into your business plan so that they do not eat into your profits.

Insurance for house swaps: Key things to consider.

Estimated Read: 5 minutes

If you have read our guide about how to do a house swap holiday or have been house swapping for a while, it is important to check you are covered by your home insurer before you exchange. What you might not realise if that the cover provided by many insurers is inadequate, meaning that you might not have the cover you may usually expect from your home insurer if you needed to make a claim.

What insurers say about house swaps.

In a survey of the UK’s top insurers, we found that the overwhelming majority of them would not provide adequate cover for policyholders that did house swaps.

88% of insurers we surveyed said they would not provide any cover for people that did house swaps. Even if your insurer does not cancel your policy, you might not have cover in your own home for things like:

Malicious damage. Even if you have built a good relationship with your fellow house swapper, you do not always know who you are letting into your property. If your relationship turns sour and your house is maliciously damaged, you may end up paying for the repairs yourself.

You can limit the risk of theft in your property by locking valuables away. However, this is not always practical and you may want this covered by your insurance. However, most home insurers do not cover theft unless there has been forced entry (e.g. a burglar breaking into the property), which would not apply to house swappers that you let into your home.

Accidental damage could easily occur. Given that this is the most likely thing that could happen, it is another thing you may want to check with your insurer to see if you have cover for this as this type of damage by a guest is often excluded.

If your guest is injured and holds you liable, you may need liability cover. A serious injury could cost thousands of pounds if you don’t have cover for this. The same could apply if the guest damages another property or injures a 3rd party such as a neighbour.

Why most insurers don’t provide comprehensive cover for house swaps.

The insurer will not know who is staying at your property and may find it safer to exclude cover for this. If your fellow house swapper normally lives overseas then this may complicate things further and may be unappealing to many home insurers as recovering any damages may be difficult. Here are some tips to make sure you get the right insurance.

1 . Speak to your insurer.

Speak to your insurer first unless your policy documentation is crystal clear. If you wait until you need to make a claim, you might not be covered and the insurer may cancel your policy.

2 . Tell then you are considering a home swap holiday.

Give them as much information as possible so that everything is recorded in case you need to make a claim.

3 . Ask them if they exclude any specific features of cover.

Will the cover you currently get be different when a house swapping guest stays at your property? If your insurer says that you have cover, be specific and make sure that nothing has been excluded.

4 . Get confirmation in writing.

If your insurer confirms that you are covered, get them to send you a letter or an email if it is not spelt out in your policy documentation.

5 . Consider specialist insurance if your cover is not adequate.

We have already established that many home insurers do not provide adequate cover for house swaps. However, the cover provided by individual insurers can vary. Consider talking to a specialist provider such as Pikl if you struggle to get the cover you need.

What cover do you offer?

Through our ‘Top-Up’ insurance policy, you can get cover for house swap claims including:

  • Public liability cover for guest accidents involving bodily injury.
  • Legal cover to defend or pursue legal claims against guests.
  • Accidental, malicious damage and theft cover if caused by a guest.
  • Alternative accommodation for you or your guest if your property is being fixed as the result of a guest related claim.
  • Fire and escape of water damage caused by a guest.
  • Loss of keys and replacement locks cover if renting out your entire property.

You will need to let your home insurer know that you intend to take out cover with us. Alternatively, you can also get a quote with us for your main home insurance as well as our Top-Up cover.

How to rent out your parking space.

Estimated Read: 5 minutes.

Many people do not realise that there is a low maintenance, potential income generator sitting on their property. If you live close to an area where events take place or near a commuter route, you could earn some extra income by renting out your parking space. If you do not use your driveway or your garage is gathering dust, doing this is an excellent way to put it to good use.

Why do it?

You could earn extra cash from renting out your parking space without having to do too much. Unlike many business ventures, you will not need to pay for any equipment or stock to get started. Once you have reached an agreement with someone to use your space, there is very little need for you to do anything unless a problem arises. There are some things you will need to check however before you start advertising your parking space.

How does it work?

To start with, you will need to find a place to advertise your space and create a description. After you have created your listing, you should be ready to go. If you are renting out your garage you will need to meet the guest initially to hand over a copy of your keys (unless there is another method of access such as key code entry). If handing over keys sounds like too much hassle, renting out your driveway may be an easier option. Unless a problem arises, the agreement you reach with the guest should allow them to come and go as they please within the times they are allowed to park there.

Are you allowed to rent it out?

If you rent your property, you will need to check with your landlord first to avoid breaking the terms of your tenancy agreement. If your property is on a lease, you will need to check the terms of this as well. For those who require a parking permit from the council, it is unlikely that you will be allowed to rent out your parking space. If you own your own property and do not require a permit for parking then you should not have a problem.

Is it safe?

It is important to highlight that you will be letting strangers use your driveway and safety should be an important consideration. If the thought of doing this makes you nervous, consider whether this is right for you. If you are worried, you could install a security camera and let your neighbour know that you intend to rent the parking space out. Restricting parking use to daylight hours is an easy safety measure but bear in mind that this could affect the amount of revenue you generate. Think about the times guests may arrive and whether you want people coming too early in the morning or late at night. Whatever you choose to do, consider the impact that having lots of cars turning up at your property may have on people that live close by.

How much money could you make?

You will probably make more money if you live in populous areas like London and the most in demand areas could generate £1000s in income. Think about the potential people that may want to rent your space. Are there lots of commuters in your area? Do you live in a popular holiday destination? Research events nearby. Do you live near places where regular events are held such as music venues and football stadiums? Your location will determine both your revenue potential and any seasonal changes in demand. Look at the competition in your area on parking websites and use this as a guide when setting your prices. Some parking websites have calculators that can estimate your potential income but it is best to use these as a guide only.

Where should you advertise your parking space?

There are several parking websites just a Google search away that can allow you to do this. The advantages of using a parking website is that all of the marketing is provided for you and is a natural place that car owners will look to. Be sure to factor in all of the fees for using these websites as they could eat into your profits. Ultimately, you can list your parking space anywhere but if you are not doing it on one of these platforms then you will have to sort everything from marketing and payment collections yourself.

Are there any laws you need to consider?

The government has previously published advice confirming that no specific planning regulations are required to rent your parking space unless there are “substantial planning concerns such as a public nuisance to your neighbours.

You will also need to consider whether you have to pay any tax on your income. If you make more than £1,000 from your parking space, you will need to notify HMRC.

Getting bookings.

You will receive more bookings if you get more positive reviews. Send a follow up email to your guest after their stay to increase the chances of getting these.

Make sure you create an accurate description for your listing. Inaccurate descriptions could leave to negative reviews and decrease your chances of getting more listings. Take a well lit photo of your parking space so that users can see what it looks like as well.

If you are still struggling to get bookings, consider changing your prices.

Rent it out to multiple users

If you rent out your parking space to regular users, consider renting it out at different times to maximise the number of people using it and get more income. If you have a large parking space that can fit multiple cars, you may have even less of a restriction when it comes how many people can use it.

Set the ground rules.

Setting reasonable ground rules are important. Remember that it is your property and establishing boundaries is important. If you choose not to use one of the main parking websites and use something like Gumtree instead, get them to sign a written contract that signs them up to your rules. Make sure they are responsible cleaning up any mess they leave and that you are not liable for any actions caused by them. Having a clause in the contract that allows you to terminate the agreement means you can end it easily if you no longer wish to continue with the arrangement. Think about what rules you want to set and how these may effect your neighbour.

Keep records.

It might be easy to make money from your parking space but do not forget to keep a record of how much you earn if you are liable for paying tax. If you are investigated by the taxman, you will need to keep meticulous records.

Are you insured?

In our parking insurance article, we showed that many insurers will not cover you if any claims arise as a result of renting out your parking space. Whilst it may seem unlikely, you could still be liable for damages if something bad happens (such as a guest crashing into your property or injuring someone). If you do not have cover for this, getting cover with a specialist provider such as Pikl is quick and easy.

How to become an Airbnb Host: 11 essential tips to get you started.

Estimated Read: 10 minutes.

Thinking of listing your property on Airbnb? There is more to being a host than just taking some photos and listing your property online. Here are 11 essential tips that will set you on your way to from beginner to Airbnb expert.

1 . Check the law in your area

Local regulations around Airbnb and short term letting vary depending on where you live in the UK. In London, a 90 day restriction applies, meaning that no property can be let out on Airbnb for more than 90 days in a year. Similar proposals for potential future restrictions have been well reported elsewhere and so it is important to check you are up to date.

If your property is in Northern Ireland, it may be illegal to list your property on sites like Airbnb unless you are certified by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board. If you are unsure whether you fit into one of their tourist accommodation categories, check out their website or get in contact with them.

Fire safety regulations also apply if your property is in Scotland, Northern Ireland or England and Wales if you let your property out to guests.

2 . You probably need specialist insurance

Our research has shown most home insurers do not provide adequate cover for Airbnb. If you have landlord insurance, you might not be covered either. The cover that Airbnb provides is also limited. If your property is covered by second home or holiday home insurance, the cover provided by these types of insurance policies for claims caused by paying guests that stay at your property is usually inadequate. Check with your insurer first. If you need more cover, a specialist broker such as Pikl may be able to help you.

3 . How much work do you intend to put in?

Whilst there are high rewards, being an Airbnb host can be a lot of work. Even if you intend to only do it part-time, you will be responsible for tasks like changing sheets, meeting guests and logging records. If you intend to have guests regularly then that is a lot of work on a recurring basis. Alternatively, if you rent your entire house out then it may be easier to be a landlord and have long term tenants. In our Airbnb vs Landlord article, we weigh up the pros and cons so you can decide. Another option if you intend to have regular guests is to get a host management company to manage your property for you. They will do tasks on your behalf including meeting guests and cleaning but it is important to factor in the cost of hiring someone to do this.

4 . Get in the mind of your guests

Think about the location of where your property is based. Is it a holiday location? A popular destination for events? Find out where the local amenities and attractions are. Not only can this make your listing description more informative and attractive to guests, but it can also get you thinking about what kind of guests you want to attract. Do you want to attract couples or individuals? Business people or travellers? Think about what type of property these people might like and present your listing accordingly.

Once you have thought about your area and what kind of guests you want to attract you can start thinking about what prices you want to set. You do not have to set it to the lowest price as this may send the wrong signals. If your area that is quite popular or you think you could attract guests with more money then a higher price may be more appropriate as guests may be expecting this. Another thing to consider is any additional potential fees you may wish to charge. Would you incorporate a cleaning fee as part of the charge for the room or charge this separately? Are there any other fees to consider such as a late check in or pet fee? Crucial to making these decisions is checking out your competition.

5 . Check out the competition

Look at the current listings in your area. What prices have they set? How have they presented their property? What amenities do they list? This is vital research you should be doing before you list your property online. What do they do well? What do they do poorly? Write down a list and think about potential unique selling points that might make your listing stand out from the others.

6 . Is your space equipped for renting?

Providing happy guest experiences is key to being a good host. Put your health and safety hat on and go over your home with a fine tooth comb to make sure there are no hidden dangers lurking. Broken mattress springs, broken fire or carbon monoxide detectors, trip hazards and exposed wires should all be fixed.

Make it easy for your guests. Is your door handle easy to turn? Do all your lights work? Consider fixing the little quirks you take for granted or leave instructions behind.

Guests not only expect a clean, tidy space, they are looking for a hotel or B&B experience. Consider whether you are going to provide tea and coffee making facilities, Wi-Fi, a TV or any other home comforts. Tidy away any personal belongings or items which people may find offensive or distasteful. Remember your ideal guest and think about leaving them a list of local amenities and attractions in the area as a nice personal touch.

A great way to ensure you have covered every potential hiccup is to get a friend or family member to stay over for a few nights and let them rate you on your room and hosting. There may be some things you have missed in your own inspections.

7. Setting up your account

Now your space is ready for visitors, you can start creating your listing. All you need to do is click on the ‘Host a Home’ option and enter all the relevant details about your room. However, creating a listing that draws visitors in takes a little more effort. You can do this with good photography and a compelling description.

Getting your photography right is a key step. Is the lighting right? Does the room look smaller than it is? Or bigger? Have you managed to highlight any unique amenities you have to offer? Your listing photos will be the main thing potential guests look at and if these are not up to scratch they may not even read your description. If photography is not your thing, Airbnb offers a professional photography service in some areas.

The second crucial step for creating an appealing listing is with a great description. Start by thinking back to the notes you wrote about your ideal guest and the competition in your local area.  Your description should inform people of the important information, facilities available and any unique offerings. Secondly, you want to ensure that it is easy to read, with short, concise paragraphs. Finally, make sure you check your spelling and grammar.

8 . Setting up your calendar

When creating your listing, you will be given the option to fill in your hosting availability calendar. Decide the dates your room will be available for rent and set this out from the start. Remember to keep this updated. You do not want to have to cancel bookings because you forgot to block out the weekend your in-laws are coming to stay!

If you list your property across multiple platforms such as HomeAway and Booking.com then consider syncing your calendar so that you do not overbook by accident.

9. Create your T & Cs

Having people stay in your property can seem like a daunting experience, which is why you should always ensure that you have any terms and conditions and house rules in place before you start accepting guests into your home. Setting boundaries is important but also make sure they are reasonable. If your rules are perceived as being over the top, your guests may choose to ignore them anyway.

10 . Promote your property

If you are serious about Airbnb hosting, or you have already set up your listing but are struggling to get bookings, it may be worth promoting your listing across other platforms. You can promote your listing on Facebook, Google and LinkedIn to showcase your property. Not only will this increase the likelihood of your place being seen, it is also a great trust marker for potential guests, by showing them you are legitimate and not a scammer. Consider also listing your property on other hosting sites such as Booking.com and HomeAway.

11 . Think about tax

Whether you intend to do Airbnb as a full time job or a side venture, it is essential to check how your tax might be affected. If you are just renting out a room in your house, the Rent a Room Scheme allows you to earn up to £7,500 a year tax free. Alternatively, if you own the property that you are renting, you can choose to deduct expenses and have the first £1,000 that you earn tax free instead. If you plan to rent out your property commercially as a holiday let for the majority of the year, your property may qualify as a furnished holiday let. If you find tax confusing, it may be best to consult with an accountant or HMRC if you are not sure what is the best option for you.

How to become a landlord

Estimated Read: 10 minutes.

Many people find that renting out a property can be a steady source of income but being a landlord is not all about sitting back and waiting for the money to flow in. There are a whole host of regulations and responsibilities to consider and to help you negotiate this minefield, we have created a handy guide if you are just starting out.

Law and responsibilities.

There are several laws governing what landlords can and cannot do in the UK. You will be responsible for keeping your property safe, maintained and obtaining the proper paperwork. You will also need to be aware of your tenant’s rights as well.

Once you are up and running, typical day to day responsibilities may include:

  • Fixing anything wrong with the property. This could be anything from the boiler going down to the drains getting blocked. If you are not able to do this yourself you will need to hire a tradesperson to do this.
  • Conducting health and safety checks and risk assessments. If you do not you could be breaking the law and be held liable if any accidents happen.
  • Drafting tenancy agreements and getting tenants to sign the relevant paperwork.
  • Making sure rent is collected on time.
  • Inspecting the property to make sure it is still in good order.
  • Finding new tenants and conducting background checks.
  • Keeping up to date with your accounts and expenses. 
  • Answering tenant queries. 

For the full list of rights and responsibilities, check out the government’s website for England & Wales and here for Scotland. They also outline current rules regarding tax. How you declare you tax can affect what you claim for and how much tax you have to pay. You may want to hire an accountant to advise you regarding this if you are not sure.

The costs.

Now that you know the regulations and responsibilities that come with being a landlord, you should write down a list of all the potential costs involved. Typical costs can include:

  • Buying your property if you do not already own it. This will have the typical costs of buying a house associated with it including potential estate agent and legal fees. If you are seeking finance then you will need to take out a buy to let mortgage.
  • Fixing and maintaining the property.
  • Acquiring the relevant paperwork.
  • Potential legal fees such as for drafting contracts or taking tenants to court.
  • Hiring a letting agency to manage your property if you can afford this. 
  • Marketing costs associated with attracting new tenants.
  • Paying taxes and potentially hiring an accountant to help you with this.
  • Buying new furniture and making sure it is safe if you choose to furnish your property. 
  • Potential costs if tenants do not pay the rent on time such as bank charges.
  • Paying for insurance.

Once you have an idea of the likely costs and expenses you may incur, you can use this list later on when factoring in how much to charge for rent and filling in tax returns.

What kind of property do you want your tenants to live in?

How you market and present your property will affect what kind of tenants you will attract. Think about your ideal tenant. Are going to attract students or professionals? What is their income level likely to be? Depending on who you are trying to attract, you will need to make sure your property is relevant for these people. Research the area surrounding your property. Look for nearby amenities and what the average rent and properties in the local area are. Your research should inform who is realistic to attract.

Once you have done this research, the next step should be deciding what to do with the property itself once it is safe and ready to go on the market. Furnishing the property may help you to attract tenants that do not want to do this themselves but there will also be a higher cost required in sourcing furniture and maintaining it. Alternatively, there may be less costs with an unfurnished the property but you may attract a different type of tenant.

If you are looking to attract students or tenants that want convenience, you may want to consider including utilities such as energy, water and broadband as part of your package.

The type of tenant you attract may also be a factor in what type of mortgage you can get, which may not allow certain types of tenant.

Laying down the rules.

When setting your tenancy agreement, you may want to implement certain rules to help protect your property, which you can specify in your tenancy agreement. This agreement forms the basis of a contract can be used to evict the tenant if things do not go to plan, provided you have followed all of the necessary rules and regulations. Tenants that have pets or smoke could cause damage and require you to clean or repair the property so you may want to think about rules regarding this. You may also want to include regular inspections so that you can check that the property is being kept in a reasonable state of repair.

Many tenancy agreements also ban subletting, which is where the tenant lets out the property to someone else (normally called a subtenant). There has been a lot of bad press regarding subletting, especially with the rise of Airbnb and in cases where tenants have done this without their landlord’s consent. Most landlord insurers and mortgages do not allow subletting. However, it is worth noting that subletting is not always bad. For example, if you own your property outright or you have a specialist mortgage that allows your tenants to sublet, allowing your tenants to do this may help them pay the rent more easily provided you already have a good relationship with them. If you do decide to allow this or are worried about your tenants subletting or doing Airbnb without your consent, Pikl can provide specialist insurance cover to protect you in case the worst happens.

Regardless of the rules you choose to stipulate, keep in mind that your tenants will be living there. Make sure that your rules are reasonable, proportionate and stick within the law.

Setting your rent and maximising your income.

By now you should have a list of all of your potential costs and done market research on your local area to get an idea of the average rent and prices. Make sure that your rent is proportionate to your area and the type of tenant you are trying to attract. Lower prices are not always better. If you are attracting higher value tenants, they may expect a higher rent and ignore properties with lower rental costs due to perceived lower value. If you are hiring an agent to manage your property then they can help you with this but factor the costs of agency fees into your rental price. To make sure being a landlord is profitable, you need to make sure your rental income exceeds the costs you will incur.

If do not have a property to rent out yet or you are wondering at this stage whether it is even worth renting out your property then this is a good time to work out the likely rental yield once you have decided on the rental price you would be likely to set. This can help you calculate the likely return on investment you could get compared to investing your cash elsewhere. To calculate the rental yield, divide the annual rental income by the assumed value of the property (if you don’t know the value of your property or the rental income for a particular area, property websites such as Zoopla and Rightmove are going for giving you a rough idea). Once you have done this, times this amount by 100 and you should have the figure. An example of how this is calculated is below:

Annual rental income of £21,600 (£1,800 per month) / property value of £300,000 x 100 = 7.2%

In the above example we have a rental yield of 7.2%. Once you have calculated yours, this figure can help you consider whether you may get a bigger return on investment elsewhere (such as buying a different rental property or even compared to different assets such as pensions and bonds). When doing this, you may also want to factor in the current rate of inflation to see how this will impact your returns. If you are applying for a buy to let mortgage, the mortgage company may consider the rental yield when approving your application. For advice on this subject, you may want to speak to a financial adviser.

When looking at rental yields, you may want to consider the short term letting market if you are looking for higher return on investment. Our article that compares renting out your property on Airbnb to having long term tenants discusses this in more detail. Doing a combination of the two may be the best way to balance risk with with a maximum return on investment, provided your insurance and mortgage provider allow this. Examples of how to do this could be hosting on Airbnb in between tenancies or having a mixed portfolio of landlord and Airbnb properties.

The benefits of hiring an agent.

There are several benefits to hiring an agent to manage your property. These can include:

  • Local knowledge of the area.
  • Marketing.
  • Sales expertise when attracting new tenants.
  • Day to day management of the property and collecting rent.
  • Mediating disputes with the tenant.
  • Guaranteed rent (not all agents offer this and the rental income after agent fees may be lower).

Should you decide to go it alone, you will have to do everything yourself. The advantage of doing this is that you will have more control over your own affairs. If you do go with an agent then you will have to factor in agent fees when balancing your income against your losses.

Getting insurance.

Getting landlord insurance is not compulsory. However, it is strongly advised. Your property is worth thousands of pounds and insurance can protect you against risk of damage. It can also protect you against things like liability for tenant injuries and loss of rent if something unexpected happens. Having insurance may also be a requirement of obtaining your buy to let mortgage. Our landlord insurance article discusses everything you need to know to get started. If you also rent on Airbnb as well as having long term tenants at your property, our specialist insurance cover has the flexibility to allow you to do this.

How Airbnb protects its hosts.

Estimated Read: 10 minutes

Unlike some platforms, Airbnb does offer some level of protection for hosts if something happens at their property. Solely relying on Airbnb if something goes wrong however could put you at risk. We discuss what they offer, what they might not cover and how you can protect yourself.

What does Airbnb cover you for?

Airbnb offers two types of protection free of charge to all of its hosts. One of these is the Airbnb Host Guarantee and the other is its Host Protection Insurance Programme. In essence, the Airbnb Host Guarantee covers damage to the hosts’s property. By contrast, the Host Protection Insurance Programme covers liability claims where the guest or another third party (e.g. a neighbour) brings a claim against the host, such as where the host is sued for something that went wrong.

What kind of things does the Guarantee Cover?

The Host Guarantee is designed to cover claims where the damage caused by your guest exceeds your security deposit or in cases where there is no security deposit listed. The level of potential cover offered is up to $1 million (or the UK equivalent) of property damage. An example of where you might claim could be where a guest accidentally damages something in your property.

What the Guarantee doesn’t cover.

Airbnb also clearly lists several things on its website that it does not cover, including:

  • Wear and tear. This is also likely to be excluded by insurance companies (including Pikl) but it is important to note that that if you have several guests stay at your property over the course of the year then the chance of damage caused by wear and tear may increase. It is important to keep your property maintained.
  • Valuables. Ideally, you should keep any valuables outside of the property or locked away if that is not possible but if that’s not something you can or want to do then bear in mind it could be excluded from their Guarantee. For a full list of what is excluded, check out their website.
  • Personal injury claims. This is covered by Airbnb’s Host Insurance Protection Programme.
  • Shared or communal areas. You may not be covered if the guest damages a shared or communal area that is not part of the listing.

The above is easily found on Airbnb’s website. However, when you look further into its terms and conditions, there are a whole raft of potential exclusions woven that may limit what you can claim for.

The Guarantee is not an insurance contract.

This is stated explicitly in its terms and conditions. This means that unlike an insurance contract, you cannot complain to an insurance regulator such as the Financial Ombudsman if something goes wrong. If you need to make a large claim and you are not covered by your home insurer (more on this below), you may need to pay for any damages out of your own pocket if Airbnb refuses to cover any damages.

The process for claiming is not straightforward.

Before you make a claim, you will be required to resolve the dispute with the guest first. This may not be appropriate for every case, such as where criminal activity has occurred. You also have a short window where you are allowed to claim.

Contrast this with insurance cover. With an insurance company, you may have to submit evidence but you will be unlikely to have a short deadline (many will give you up to 180 days). You will not be required to resolve the dispute with the guest directly first either.

Unclear terms & conditions.

There appear to be several potential exclusions and the wording is not always clear.

A good example of unclear wording is the stated $1 million worth of property damage cover. The $1 million cover is actually worldwide cover for every Airbnb host, not $1 million per property. There are thousands of Airbnb hosts and this means you are probably covered for significantly less than many people may realise.

Another potential minefield is a clause stating that Airbnb will be ‘entitled to exoneration’ if the property covered or the ‘risk associated with that property’ changes materially. How something is deemed as a ‘material change’ is unclear.

What does Airbnb Host Protection Insurance cover?

The Airbnb Host Insurance Protection Programme covers hosts for up to $1 million for liability claims brought against the host. Potential scenarios where you may need this type of cover could be where a guest is injured, holds you responsible and decides to take legal action against you. Or maybe your guest accidentally damages your neighbour’s property and the neighbour takes action against you. Without liability cover, you may have to pay for any legal costs and subsequent damages yourself. Unlike the Guarantee, Airbnb’s Host Protection insurance is an insurance contract and it is great that Airbnb offers this cover free of charge to all of its hosts.

What Host Protection Insurance doesn’t cover.

Despite being insurance there are still some limitations as to what you will be covered for. It’s important to be aware of them so you know what to expect if a claim was made against you.

Loss of earnings.

If you lose income as a result of your property being damaged due to a guest related claim, you will not be able to use this cover to claim any potential future earnings you may have lost as a result of a claim. You would typically need legal cover elsewhere to claim for something like this.

$1 million cover may not be enough.

You will get up to $1 million cover per listing if you are an Airbnb host. This may seem like a lot. However, if a guest has a serious, life changing injury then the potential damages may exceed this. Imagine that your guest is young and has a lucrative career. If they earn a decent wage, have 30 or 40 plus years of work ahead of them and require lifetime care, it is quite easy to see how the cost of a claim could exceed $1 million. If you were unlucky enough to have a large claim made against you by your guest or a third party, you may have to pay thousands of pounds out of your own pocket if Airbnb is not prepared to cover any damages above $1 million.

Won’t my home insurer cover me?

You may be thinking that your home insurer will cover you for Airbnb related claims. However, based on our research, most home insurers do not cover Airbnb or similar platforms. Most landlord insurance policies do not provide adequate cover either. If your property is covered by a holiday home or second home insurance policy, you may want to check that you are covered for claims caused by paying guests staying at your property.

How specialist insurance can help.

Many standard insurance policies are not designed to provide adequate cover for paying guests, which is why you could be at risk if you listed your property on Airbnb. A dedicated insurance policy on the other hand can fill this gap in cover.

Pikl provide specialist insurance for short-term letting, including cover for properties that are let out on websites such as Airbnb and holiday homes.

If you just need cover for paying guests, you can ‘top up’ your existing cover by taking out one of our policies. This can include:

  • Public liability cover including cover for guest accidents involving bodily injury.
  • Legal cover to defend or pursue legal claims against guests.
  • Accidental, malicious damage and theft cover if caused by a guest.
  • Alternative accommodation for you or your guest if your property is being fixed as the result of a guest related claim.
  • Fire and escape of water damage caused by a guest.
  • Loss of keys and replacement locks cover if renting out your entire property.

We can also cover your main home, landlord or holiday home insurance if you want the convenience of having all of your cover in the same place.

If you are not happy with the level of cover provided, getting insurance with us is simple and getting a quote only takes minutes.