Short Term Rental Insurance

Contributor, Benzinga

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Do you have a beautiful cabin on a lake or condo in a busy city and want to advertise the space as a short term vacation rental? You may need to increase your insurance coverage.

We’ve collected everything you need to know about protecting your home or rental property when you rent to short term guests. Learn more about who needs short term rental insurance and how to find the right policy. We’ve also put together a list of some of the best insurance companies for short term rental protection.

Quick Look: The Best Short Term Rental Insurance

The Best Short Term Rental Insurance

It can be difficult to find the right short term renter policy. Check out our top insurance company choices for your short term vacation rental coverage.

1. Allstate

Allstate is one of the largest insurance providers in the country and offers home sharing coverage.

You can add this additional coverage to an existing homeowners policy. It’ll help cover gaps that your homeowners insurance won’t cover, such as guest theft.

To combine a home and renters insurance quote, click here.

get started securely through Allstate’s website
Best For
High-Value Items
N/A
1 Minute Review

Allstate is a well-known insurance company with a national presence. It offers several insurance products, including renters insurance. If you have multiple policies with Allstate, you may be eligible for a discount on your insurance products. Allstate offers comprehensive renters insurance coverage, including water and sewer damage. It also offers generous protection for expensive items such as jewelry. If you live in a high-risk area, however, you may notice that your renters insurance premium is much higher than some of Allstate’s competitors.

Best For
  • Renters who own high-value items
  • Renters who live in areas that are considered moderate or low-risk
Pros
  • Water and sewer damage included
  • No overall limits on reimbursement amounts
Cons
  • Premiums can vary widely depending on where you live
  • Below-average coverage for electronics

2. Proper Insurance

Proper Insurance offers short term rental coverage that actually replaces your existing homeowners or landlord policy on your property.

This coverage is ideal if you have a vacation home that you occupy on occasion and rent out when you’re gone.

Get started securely through Proper Insurance – Renters’s website

3. Nationwide

Nationwide is a large insurance provider for car, home, life and other types of insurance. It offers both short term renters policies as well as rental endorsements for your existing homeowners policy.

You can also choose a landlord or commercial property policy through Nationwide.

Best For
Customizable policies
N/A
1 Minute Review

As one of the United States’ largest insurance providers, Nationwide offers homeowners insurance options across the country. If you already have a policy with Nationwide, you can easily bundle multiple coverages together to save on both policies. In addition to bundling, Nationwide also allows you to save using many other discounts, including discounts for having a security system installed in your home and for remaining claims free.

Unlike some other insurance providers, Nationwide makes it easy to claim a quote online (though you can speak with an in-person representative if you choose). Though Nationwide quoted higher than the national average price for homeowner’s insurance, these costs can vary widely by location. Overall, Nationwide provides homeowners with a quick and easy option to get covered. 

 

Best For
  • Homeowners looking for fast coverage
  • Homeowners who want the option to speak with an agent
  • Anyone who already has a Nationwide policy
Pros
  • Instant quote tool allows you to see prices quickly
  • Loss-of-use and credit protections included on standard policies
  • Offers a range of insurance products for bundling discounts
Cons
  • Confusing customer contact system
  • Pricing higher than average in some areas

4. Progressive

Progressive offers an affordable short term rental coverage option that can be turned off and on as needed.

That means you only have to pay for coverage when you have guests staying in your rental room or property.

To combine a home and renters insurance quote, click here.

Best For
Discounts
N/A
1 Minute Review

Progressive is a long-standing insurance company, founded in 1937. It has an AM Best rating of A+ and an S&P rating of AA. Progressive’s renters insurance provides affordable coverage that can help you recover financially from an unexpected loss.

Best For
  • Opportunity for discounts
  • Easy claims process
Pros
  • Offers a mobile app
  • Can bundle your policy with other Progressive insurance products
  • Offers the option for low deductibles
Cons
  • Need to enter personal information such as your birthdate and social security number to receive a quote
  • Can only make monthly payments if you enroll in automatic withdrawals

5. State Farm: Best for Landlord Insurance

One of the best aspects of State Farm’s landlord policies is coverage of additional structures on your property. For example, a landlord policy from State Farm usually covers pools, garden sheds or fencing at no extra cost.

You can also choose to add coverage to your landlord policy such as identity theft protection.

To combine a home and renters insurance quote, click here.

Best For
Existing State Farm policyholders
N/A
1 Minute Review

State Farm is among the best-known insurance companies in the country. The company boasts longevity — it’s been in business since 1922. It sells policies primarily through its network of more than 19,000 agents. Although many know State Farm for its auto and homeowners insurance, it also sells competitive renters insurance

Don’t assume your landlord’s insurance will cover you if there’s a fire or theft in your rental home. Your landlord’s insurance is designed to cover damage to the physical building itself. Landlord insurance includes roof and walls, but it won’t cover your personal belongings. You are responsible for the replacement of your furniture, clothing, electronics and more — unless you have renters insurance. 

State Farm offers renters insurance coverage that protects your personal property. Its coverage also includes liability insurance and loss of use. You can also opt for optional types of coverage like identity restoration and earthquake damage. 

State Farm offers just 2 types of discounts. On the plus side, its renters insurance is relatively inexpensive, and you can work with an agent to ensure you have the right amount of coverage. 

State Farm also offers an easy claims process and solid customer service, in addition to a mobile app that makes it easy to manage your policy. 

State Farm is a good choice for renters who prefer to work with an agent or who already have another type of State Farm policy. Learn more about its options in our State Farm renters insurance review.

Best For
  • Renters who want an in-person agent
  • Renters who already have another State Farm policy
Pros
  • Easy online claims process
  • The support of an agent
  • User-friendly mobile app
Cons
  • Only 2 types of discounts
  • Below average customer satisfaction ratings from J.D. Power

What is Short Term Rental Insurance?

Homeowners and renters insurance both cover damages while you live in your apartment, home or condo. Your policy may not cover the activity of others when you allow other people to rent your space. Let’s say someone gets hurt — you could be liable and your homeowners policy may not cover it.

Short term renters insurance is insurance coverage for rental properties or temporary vacation rentals. Policies protect you from damages that occur when someone else temporarily rents space in your home.

For example, let’s say you rent a room to vacationers for a weekend and a guest accidentally lights a fire. Your regular homeowners insurance may not cover it. Unlike when you host friends for a weekend, renting out a room is usually considered a business activity. Business transactions often mean you need increased coverage.

You may be able to add an endorsement, or specific extra coverage, to your existing insurance. Otherwise, you’ll probably need to purchase a separate, standalone policy for renting your space. Some providers offer standalone policies designed for vacation home rentals. Most standalone policies, however, are actually commercial property or landlord insurance policies.

Who Needs Short Term Renters Insurance?

How do you decide whether you need short term renters insurance? Generally, anyone who stays at a rental property for 30 days or less is considered a short term renter.

Your existing homeowners insurance may be enough coverage if you rent your home very occasionally, Most standard homeowners policies include coverage for occasional rentals. Does your city host a large festival each year? If so, you might want to earn extra cash by renting an extra room. Since the room is only rented for 1 or 2 nights a year, you may be completely covered by your existing policy.

However, every insurance company has different rules on occasional renters. You should talk with your homeowners insurance provider to learn more about your specific policy. Know that you’ll probably need additional coverage if you plan to rent your home more than a few times a year. 

You might want to consider adding short term renters insurance to your home if you:

  • Are a vacation homeowner and rent your property several weeks out of the year
  • Rent an extra bedroom several times a month
  • Have a separate building on your property that you use as a vacation rental

What to Look for in a Short Term Rental Policy

Like any property insurance policy, there are certain things you need to look for in a short term renters policy. The cost of the coverage will likely play a big role in the policy you choose. The type of coverage offered by the policy should also be an important factor.

Make sure to consider these factors:

  • The cost of policy premiums or additional cost to existing homeowners insurance
  • The amount of coverage for damaged property or liability

You also need to understand these terms:

  • Premium: The cost of your policy, often charged by month, twice a year or annually.
  • Liability coverage: Covers injuries to your renters or their guests while they stay at your property. For example, if a renter trips on a loose floorboard, liability insurance should cover any legal costs or medical costs associated with the injury.
  • Deductible: The amount of your claim you’re required to pay before your insurance company pays.

You also need to consider your coverage options:

  1. Add an endorsement to your existing homeowners policy for short term renters.
  2. Take out a vacation rental, home-share or other insurance policy designed specifically for short term rentals.
  3. Take out a landlord insurance policy that covers short term renters.
  4. Take out a commercial property insurance policy.

There are pros and cons to each type of coverage. Be sure to weigh each option before you choose a coverage type.

Add an Endorsement to Existing Homeowners Insurance Policy

This is the easiest way to get coverage for short term renters. You just need to call your homeowners insurance agent and ask about adding additional coverage for short term renters.

Pros:

  • You won’t need a new policy.
  • This is often the least expensive option for short term renters.
  • You’ll deal with your existing agent and insurance company.

Cons:

  • Not all homeowners policies have short term renters insurance available.
  • The coverage offered by a short term rental endorsement may not be enough if you rent your home out a lot.

Take Out Vacation Rental or Homeshare Insurance

Certain insurance companies have begun offering policies specifically designed for temporary short term renter needs. This may be the best option if you find an insurance company that provides this type of insurance in your area.

Pros:

  • This is often less expensive than landlord or commercial property insurance.
  • The policy is designed to cover the needs of short term rentals.
  • You don’t need to worry about mixing your rental business with personal insurance.

Cons:

  • Not all companies offer this type of policy.
  • Limited providers make it more difficult to get the exact coverage you want.

Take Out Landlord Insurance Policy

Want to take out a landlord insurance policy? First, you have to find an insurance provider that offers landlord coverage and you’ll also want to make sure your landlord coverage includes short term renters.

Pros:

  • Landlord coverage helps keep personal and business finances separate from your homeowners policy for personal activity and landlord policy for renting.
  • The policy is specifically for renting out your home.

Cons:

  • Landlord coverage is usually more expensive than a homeowners policy endorsement.
  • It could be difficult to find a policy that specifically covers short term renters.

Take Out Commercial Property Insurance

Do you plan to rent your home for most of the year? If so, a commercial property policy could be right for you. Businesses like hotels, resorts or other vacation lodging use commercial property insurance.

Pros:

  • Coverage is often complete, with few gaps in coverage.

Cons:

  • Commercial insurance is expensive, so it’s probably not worth it if you rent temporarily.

Protect Your Rental with Short Term Rental Insurance

Be sure you have adequate coverage before you rent out your spare bedroom or vacation condo on the beach. The last thing you want is to make extra money renting your property, only to have to cover expenses for damages out of pocket.

Call your existing homeowners insurance agent to find out if you have enough coverage to rent your property. You should also get a quote from insurance providers for standalone short term or landlord insurance policies. Compare coverage between an endorsement to your existing policy and a new policy specifically for your rental property.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q

What factors do I need to consider in short-term rental insurance?

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What factors do I need to consider in short-term rental insurance?
asked
A
1

You need to look at the coverage, deductibles and premiums.

answered
Q

What are some excellent short-term renters insurance carriers?

1
What are some excellent short-term renters insurance carriers?
asked
A
1

Some of the best short-term renters insurance companies include Nationwide, Progressive and State Farm.

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