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'Bad things happen to good tenants': RentCover

23 April 2013 Steven Cross

One in five property investors who use property managers don’t have landlord insurance, according to RentCover.

According to RentCover general manager, Sharon Fox-Slater, insurance is essential when "bad things happen to good tenants".

“A professional property manager is vital to reducing the risks posed by tenants, but 'stuff' can still happen," she said.

"An asset worth hundreds of thousands of dollars should be professionally managed and fully protected with insurance, but research shows that one in five landlords who use professional property managers still don't have landlord insurance.

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"Even the best of tenants can suffer circumstances beyond their landlord's control or, for that matter, beyond their own control.

“Many different everyday situations can lead to occasions where rental properties are damaged and untenable," concluded Ms Fox-Slater.

EBM Insurance Brokers believe even the best tenants can't fully protect a landlord's assets and income, as they point to claims lodged last year.

"My tenant was teaching his wife to drive," said one claimant.

"As she pulled into the driveway, she hit the mailbox and, amidst the panic, hit the accelerator. They went through the front doors of our rental property."

Other cases have involved a burglary: "Burglars smashed up the place. They ruined their (the tenants') stuff as well as our carpets, curtains and blinds," said another unlucky claimant.

"They had to stay with a relative while the place was made liveable again."

A third case involved a fire. In this instance, the claimant's tenants woke up one night to find their apartment full of smoke, but there wasn't a visible fire.

It turned out that a car in their basement car park was on fire and the smoke was filling their apartment.  Extensive cleaning was needed to make the apartment liveable again.

RentCover also reminded property managers that as with any type of insurance, landlord policies need to be reviewed periodically to ensure that the sums insured are up to date as rents, repair costs and property values change.

'Bad things happen to good tenants': RentCover
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