As the Chairman and CEO of the Insurance Office of America, Heath Ritenour spends quite a bit of time developing processes to circumnavigate investing’s most inherent financial risks. For landlords, Heath Ritenour understands that additional protection can go a long way, particularly when it comes to new investment properties with long-term implications.

While landlord insurance may not be the most exciting of conversational topics, developing the right landlord insurance policy can ensure that your property is protected when you need it most.

Understanding Landlord Insurance (And Do I Need It?)

Having developed the Insurance Office of America into one of the largest private insurance agencies in the nation, Ritenour has developed some level of skill when it comes to protecting his investments. In that same line of thinking, Ritenour wants prospective and present landlords to understand that landlord insurance is not the same as homeowners insurance.

What is landlord insurance, then?

Landlord insurance is designed for residential property owners who are renting out their space to tenants. The exact type of coverage can and will vary based upon the landlord, the property in question, and the renter.

With that being said, almost all policies will cover the basics:

  • Sudden Income Loss – If a tenant must move out due to loss, landlord insurance will cover any lost rental income.
  • Property Damage – The most common reason to place an insurance claim, landlord insurance provides coverage for damage to the structure as a result of weather, fire, acts of God, or vandalism.
  • Liability Issues – Lawsuits/legal fees, as well as settlements and medical costs, can all be covered by landlord insurance.

Insurance expert Heath Ritenour also understands that certain properties will carry with them elevated concerns that may go beyond the traditional coverage provided by landlord insurance. As a result, additional coverage may be required. Depending on where you live, flood insurance may be an add-on policy to consider. Some landlords will also opt to gain coverage for furniture and fixtures.

Typically, landlord insurance does not cover the following items:

  • Tenant Belongings
  • Partial Home Rentals
  • Broken Appliances

Finding the Right Landlord Insurance Quote

Like any other insurance policy, finding the perfect policy premium will be dependent on location, inherent risk, and your own financial situation. Landlord insurance companies will often charge increased premiums against property owners with a history of damage claims, particularly recent ones.

With that being understood, finding the right landlord insurance policy requires some shopping around. There are many different policies and carriers available throughout the country. Most important of all, landlords should focus on three primary questions as they develop their policy.

  1. What Kind of Coverage Do I Need? – First and foremost, finding the right policy comes above all else. No two locations will feature the same requirements, so Heath Ritenour advises working closely with an insurance broker to ensure your coverage needs are met. Consider flood and water damage as well as other exacerbating circumstances.
  2. How MUCH Coverage Do I Need? – The more coverage you need, the higher your premium will be. Insurance policies also feature a deductible and that can vary greatly depending on the policy.
  3. Are There Any Specials/Discounts? – Many insurance agencies will reduce costs for insurance policies when you bundle them together.

To learn more about landlord insurance and its impact on your bottom line, contact Heath Ritenour and the team at the Insurance Office of America!