Poole and Bournemouth have long been favourite destinations for holidaymakers. The combination of stunning beaches, Gulf Stream warmed climate and glorious countryside have made it a mecca for tourists and provided a golden opportunity for traditional hotels and bed and breakfast owners.
Over the last few years, however, the Bournemouth and Poole area has seen a fresh surge of visitors and a new type of holiday accommodation. Airbnb, the website that allows members of the public to offer short-term lets of their properties, has transformed the way we stay. In the UK there were 5.7m inbound Airbnb visits in 2017 which generated over £3.4bn in economic activity. In the Bournemouth area there are now over 300 registered destinations.
With its flexibility and ease of operation, Airbnb makes for an attractive proposition. Like so many opportunities though it comes with risks, risks that specialist Airbnb insurance can protect you from. In this latest blog from Coversure Poole – Poole’s leading independent insurance brokers – we’ll guide you as to the risks you face and the covers you need to protect yourself and your property.
Airbnb Hosts: Why You Need Special Insurance
Many Airbnb hosts don’t realise that they need specialist cover. This is because many insurers won’t be willing to extend standard home insurance to properties being used as short-let businesses. Some may be willing to help – you will need to let them know and discuss it – while others will dismiss it out of hand. Even with those who are willing to provide cover, there’s a fair chance they won’t be prepared to pay out should a claim arise relating to your paying clients. So, if they were injured, suffered property damage or loss – the kind of liability cover that comes with holiday home insurance – then you could be left liable. Airbnb do offer Host Cover, but as we’ll see this isn’t necessarily all you need.
What To Look For In Airbnb Insurance Cover
There are several features you will want to have included in your cover. Whether you need host cover, cover for letting an annexe or for letting your whole property, you’ll want to make sure that you have the following protections in place:
- Public liability – when you open up your property to members of the public, you become liable should they be accidentally injured or they have their property damaged. These claims can be sizeable and as the numbers of public liability insurance claims are on the rise in the UK, it’s essential that you are properly protected. Airbnb Host Protection does offer some limited cover in this respect, but only covers the guest while they are staying at your property. If any other visitor was to be accidentally injured while visiting you – while making a delivery for example – then Host Protection wouldn’t apply.
- Buildings Insurance – this is obviously a standard feature of a home insurance policy and it will protect you financially if your property is accidentally damaged. It protects your building’s physical structure – the walls, the roof, the foundations as well as the fitted fixtures such as the kitchen, bathrooms and fitted wardrobes. A typical policy will also help you should your home be affected by fire, flood, subsidence, water leaks, storms or other unfortunate events such as damage from a falling tree. As your home is also a business, you will need specialist cover which our team would be happy to discuss with you by calling Coversure Poole on (01202) 801 782 or by “clicking here”:“https://www.coversure.co.uk/contact-us.
- Contents insurance – another standard element of home insurance cover, contents protection is offered on a limited basis by Airbnb so if a guest damages something you will probably be covered. If the damage caused is nothing to do with your bookings though then you won’t be protected and could face a nasty bill for repair or replacement.
- Home emergency cover – a burst pipe, a gas leak, a loss of electricity; these are all common and painful experiences for you as a property owner. When you have paying guests staying with you it takes that pain to a whole new level. “ Home emergency cover”:https://www.coversure.co.uk/insurance/home-emergency gives you 24 hour cover so you can minimise any disruption to your guests and minimise any further damage to your property.
Does Airbnb’s Host Guarantee Give Enough Cover?
The short answer to this is no, not really. Host Guarantee aims to cover damage caused by your property by guests and protects them while they are with you, but it doesn’t cover all the wide range of risks listed above. At the time of writing it also has some notable exclusions:
- No communal area cover – so if damage is caused to the entrance of your apartment building or to a communal garage or bike store, for example, that would be outside the policy’s cover
- No cash or valuables cover – so if a guest made off with your laptop or an antique clock, you would have no grounds for a claim
Airbnb: A Great Opportunity For Local Property Owners
Airbnb is a great opportunity for property owners in Bournemouth and Poole, but as we have seen it does bring risks that need to be insured against. Sadly, at present, many property owners are unaware of the fact that their standard home insurance won’t cover them for this opportunity, so hopefully this blog will help with that.
Like Some Insurance Help?
If you’d like some help getting the right insurance for your Airbnb let, then please get in touch. You can call the Coversure Poole team on Coversure Poole on (01202) 801 782 or email us by clicking here.