If you are investing in a rental property, the question of insurance will no doubt arise sooner or later. While you want to insure the money you have put into the home or apartments, it is also important to keep in mind that an expensive, full-coverage, unnecessary policy will detract from your profits. With that being said, there are a few important things to check for before you sign that important insurance paperwork from a company like Elders Insurance.
Loss of Main Structure
All policies should outline the coverage you are afforded when the main structure of your building is damaged by vandalism, extreme weather, fire, or other unavoidable destruction. Check to see what insurance will cover, and whether or not the replacement cost you will be provided with is near the actual cash value of the property.
Certain policies will also include a clause about major appliances in this section that will be replaced if damaged by unnatural events and not normal wear-and-tear.
Fences, storage sheds, and greenhouses all qualify as separate structures and may or may not be covered by your policy. While the decision to include this additional service is personal preference, you will have to weigh the additional monthly cost with the actual worth of these structures. If your fence or sheds or easily replaceable or largely unused, your policy would be more cost-effective without this coverage.
If your rental properties include your personal belongings (such as furniture or appliances), depending on their worth, you should consider requesting this coverage be added. It can add quite a bit to your monthly or annual insurance payment, so unless you live in a risky environment for natural disasters, like tornadoes or wildfires that could destroy the interior of a home, most insurance providers will agree it is unnecessary for landowner policies. If unfurnished, there is also no need to worry about this option.
Because landlords need to protect themselves against lawsuits or claims brought against them by tenants, liability coverage is the most important part of your insurance. It is always best to select one of the higher coverage options as you could be sued for something as minor as a picture falling off the wall, although this scenario is unlikely with properly vetted tenants. Claims due to actual negligence can be much more costly to defend and as such, an umbrella policy is generally recommended to include anything under a liability claim.