Airbnb Insurance for hosts

Specialist insurance which provides the additional cover required for hosting on sites such as Airbnb.

Compare prices across a panel of top UK insurers

Up to £5 million public liability per guest-related claim

Insurance for theft, accidental & malicious damage by guests

Hundreds of 5-star customer reviews.

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What’s included?

Public liability for guest-related issues

Fire, storm and flood damage

Loss of income

Home emergency cover

Theft, vandalism and accidental damage

Legal expenses cover

Replacement locks

Up to 365 days of guest-related cover if needed

Escape of water and oil

Subsidence, heave and landslip

Property owner & personal liability cover

No admin fees for mid-term policy changes

What is Airbnb insurance?

Airbnb insurance is a specialist type of cover provided by specialist insurers. This term relates to a type of insurance cover that is separate to anything Airbnb themselves provide. It covers hosts and holiday let owners renting their homes out to paying guests or on platforms such as Airbnb, VRBO and Unlike typical household insurance, it’s specifically designed to provide protection for guest-related claims. Airbnb insurance can be bought as standalone cover just for guest-related issues or part of an overall home insurance package. Some hosts take out this cover as it can provide additional protection over Aircover, standard home insurance or when hosting on multiple platforms.

Do I need specific home insurance for Airbnb?

In the UK, most standard household insurance doesn’t fully cover Airbnb style hosting. In most cases, hosts that rely on standard home insurance could encounter issues such as:

  • Policy cancellation: Your home insurer may refuse to continue offering cover and state that you need to seek insurance elsewhere.
  • Cover restrictions: Restricted cover for guest-related claims or a complete cover exclusion. This could mean that you have no cover for issues such as theft and malicious damage.
  • Hosting restrictions: Your home insurer may place other limits on your policy, such as how many times you can have paying guests stay at your property.

Platforms such as Airbnb may provide some cover, although this doesn’t provide the same certainty of protection as dedicated insurance cover.

Does Airbnb cover their own insurance for hosts?

Airbnb doesn’t provide insurance for property damage. Instead, its Host Damage Protection programme is a guarantee that only provides some limited protection in event you need to make a claim:

“The Host Damage Protection is not an insurance policy. To the extent you desire protection beyond the Host Damage Protection, Airbnb strongly encourages you to purchase insurance that will cover you and your property for losses caused by Guests or Guests’ invitees in the event your loss is not within the terms of the Host Damage Protection.”

Not having insurance cover for property damage means that you won’t be able to complain to a third party regulator such as the Financial Ombudsman if you aren’t happy with the outcome of a claim. Unlike Airbnb, an insurance policy regulated by the FCA (such as Pikl Insurance) will give you more consumer protection for any damage claims.

Airbnb does provide insurance for liability. However, they only cover you up to $1 million. This is sufficient for many scenarios, but is unlikely to cover larger claims where the cost of lifetime care could exceed this. Not having enough liability cover could result in you being liable for a significant sum of money.

For hosts listing their properties on multiple websites, Airbnb’s cover doesn’t protect you on alternative platforms. What’s more, many alternative platforms offer little to no protection at all if something goes wrong.

Legally, this depends on what part of the UK you live in. Scotland recently introduced legislation that requires all hosts to have liability cover in place. There are no current requirements for hosts in other parts of the UK to have liability cover although there are significant benefits to having it.

What does additional Airbnb insurance cover?

Specialist insurers such as Pikl can provide additional Airbnb insurance that covers several areas of hosting. Here are some of the key elements of cover:

Airbnb buildings insurance

This covers the physical structure of the property such as the walls, fixtures and fittings. Like standard household insurance, this covers damage up to the specified rebuild cost of the home. You may be able to claim for some issues that affect the building through Airbnb, although they limit what you can claim for. If you require cover for non-Airbnb related issues (such as a weather event) you’ll need to either arrange this cover separately through insurance. 

Airbnb contents insurance

Contents insurance covers the items inside of a property that aren’t fixed to the building itself, such as a sofa or a television. These are also the types of claims more easily claimed for through Airbnb’s resolution centre when it comes to property damage. However, a dedicated Airbnb insurance policy can also cover you for the entire sum of contents inside the property, which typically runs into £10,000s. 

Theft insurance

Most household insurance policies only cover theft with forced entry. This won’t be the case in most scenarios where you’ve let an Airbnb guest into your property. Trying to resolve this kind of dispute with a guest through Airbnb may also be stressful, especially if you’re involving the Police. Consider a specialist provider such as Pikl that covers theft by a guest.

Loss of income

You’ll likely miss out on potential income if your property isn’t repaired in time for the next booked guest. If Airbnb revenue is your main source of income, this would likely become a serious issue. Pick an insurer such as Pikl that is willing to cover you for this following a claim if this is important to you. This ensures that if you’re out of action for a prolonged period you’re not out of pocket for any bookings you had in place after that 14 day period.

Malicious and accidental damage

Like theft, malicious or accidental damage where it relates to Airbnb style hosting is another key area restricted by most household insurers and is likely to be very stressful if trying to resolve a problem with a guest through Airbnb. Some insurers may choose to cover accidents but not deliberate damage. However, proving guest damage was accidental may not always be straightforward. If guest damages are a major point of concern, speak to a dedicated insurer like Pikl that can cover you for this.    

Public liability insurance for Airbnb

Public liability insurance for Airbnb hosting covers claims brought against you such as a guest injury claim or damage to third party property. Examples of this include:

  • A guest trips over an object and falls down the stairs, requiring hospitalisation.
  • Faulty wiring catches fire, giving a guest significant burns.
  • A guest invites friends over for a party at your house, causing damage to your neighbour’s property.

Hosts are legally liable to pay compensation in cases where they are at fault. Public liability insurance covers you against the stress and financial loss that may occur as a result of this.

Specialist insurance can cover you for larger claims exceeding Airbnb’s $1 million limit, or any liability claim on alternative platforms that don’t provide protection at all. Liability claims can be significant in terms of the sums involved, and liability insurance is one of the most important insurance features you can have. Examples of where a claim could exceed $1 million in compensation include:

  • A young person with a lucrative career that incurs serious injuries that require lifetime care.
  • Guests from overseas that face repatriation and significant healthcare costs due to injuries (e.g. guests from the United States).
  • Significant fire damage to several neighbouring properties.

Public liability insurance is now also a legal requirement when hosting in Scotland. Several regions of Scotland now require more than the $1 million provided by Airbnb. Pikl covers hosts for up to £5 million per guest-related liability claim.

Public liability insurance purchased specifically for hosting doesn’t cover non guest-related events. For example, a non-guest visiting your property and being injured would not be covered under this type of insurance. For that you would need property owner and occupier’s liability, which is covered under standard home insurance policies.

Legal expenses cover

Legal expenses allows you to pursue or defend legal claims where this relates to guest-related activity. Examples of where you may want to use this if insured through Pikl could be taking guests to court or having income paid towards the cost of an accountant if being investigated by HMRC regarding your hosting income. This type of cover isn’t currently provided through Airbnb either.

Pest infestation

Having your property infested with bugs is likely to cause significant disruption and potentially cause you to lose booking income due to the time likely to be taken in completely resolving the issue. Unlike with Pikl, pest infestation is typically excluded by standard home insurers.

Will regular home insurance cover me for Airbnb?

Speak to your home insurer first. Insurer cover varies quite a lot, so the answer you get depends. Your insurer may:

  • Keep your policy live but place an ‘endorsement’ on it that places some restrictions on what you can do or claim for. 
  • Tell you to look for insurance elsewhere but give you a grace period (usually 7 days) to sort an alternative insurance policy.
  • Say they can cover you. They should also point you to their policy booklet outlining cover limits and exclusions. 

In most cases, a standard home insurer is likely to restrict some cover where it relates to Airbnb hosting and many hosts seek additional cover elsewhere. However, it’s important to note that you’ll still need to inform your existing insurer of any intention to get additional Airbnb insurance, even if this is separate to your main home insurance policy. Some insurers may not be comfortable with this and others will have no issues.

Is holiday home insurance and Airbnb insurance the same?

Holiday home insurance can also cover guest-related claims, so there is some overlap. However, most holiday home insurance policies don’t fully cover Airbnb- related claims. Examples of issues many exclude include theft and malicious damage by a guest. Not all Airbnb listings are in holiday homes either. Some Airbnb hosts rent out their main residence and this type of property wouldn’t be suitable for a holiday home insurance policy as the risks are not the same.

Can I use landlord insurance for Airbnb?

Like typical home insurance, the cover you’ll get for guest-related claims through landlord insurance varies a lot with each insurer, with most restricting what you can claim for. Speak to your landlord insurer in the first instance and see if they are willing to cover you. A specialist Airbnb insurer such as Pikl may be the best option for you. A standard landlord insurance policy is unlikely to be appropriate for you if hosting full time in the property as landlord insurance typically covers a property with tenants living there long term. Landlord insurers are more likely to covered you if you’re only listing on Airbnb in between tenancies. 

Do I need to tell my home insurance provider about Airbnb?

Your insurer may ask you questions about whether you host on Airbnb. However, even in cases where this isn’t asked or your circumstances change, it’s essential that you speak to your existing home insurer about any hosting activity. This applies even if you believe they’ll cover you as hosting on Airbnb is likely to be considered a material change in circumstances that is likely to also change the risk the insurer is covering. Not telling your insurer could result in the following issues:

  • Your insurer not paying a claim. They may only be partially pay out. In some cases, they may pay nothing at all. The insurer can to do this where you have deliberately withheld important information.
  • Voiding of your policy. In cases where your insurer suspects that withholding information was deliberate, they may void your policy. This is similar to cancelling a policy but is much worse as the policy is cancelled as though it never existed. Doing this is usually reserved for more extreme cases such as fraud, but is likely to result in making it difficult for you to find insurance again.
  • Missed mortgage payments. If your property is mortgaged and a large claim isn’t covered, you may have to weigh up the cost of fixing your property against keeping up with mortgage repayments. 

Speaking to your insurer is always the best option, even if you think they’re not likely to cover you. Most insurers will give you time to source insurance alternatives elsewhere if that happens. 

I’m based in Scotland. Do I need at least £5 million in liability cover for hosting?

There’s no current minimum requirement for how much liability cover you need written in law. However, certain regions of Scotland do require a minimum amount of cover, which you will need to check when applying for your hosting licence. For more information, please check out the Scottish government’s website. However, for specific information about public liability cover in your region, you will need to contact your local authority.

How much does host insurance cost?

The premium for a host insurance policy depends on what and how long you need cover for. Click on the ‘Get a quote’ button to get an insurance quotation and a cost. We always aim to provide the most value for money.

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Pikl Insurance Services Limited is a private limited company registered in England and Wales under company number 10449346 with registered office Suite B, 2nd Floor, The Atrium, St. Georges Street, Norwich, England, NR3 1AB. Pikl Insurance Services Limited is authorised and regulated by the FCA, firm number 773457.