Rent guarantee insurance

Rent guarantee insurance is a form of protection for landlords. It can include cover for properties that are:

  • Left unoccupied for a period of time between tenants
  • Uninhabitable due to renovation work, malicious damage or disasters like fire and flooding

We don't currently offer this kind of cover. But we do offer tenant default cover - also referred to as rent protection insurance - as an add-on to a landlord insurancepolicy. Tenant default cover differs to rent guarantee as it's designed to pay you the rent you’re owed, if you decide to evict tenants who are behind on the rent.

We've partnered with Simply Business to help find you the cover you need. Read on to find out more about tenant default cover, or get a quote to see your options for landlord policies that include tenant default cover.

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What is tenant default cover?

Tenant default cover helps with your monthly rental income if a tenant doesn’t pay. It’s also known as rent protection insurance.

You can typically make a claim if your tenant is more than 30 days behind on rent, and for a fixed amount of time – normally 12 months. Within that time, landlords hope the tenant would have either:

  • Started paying the rent again
  • Left the property of their own accord
  • Been evicted according to the correct eviction procedure

Most policies only allow you to a claim if you’ve served the tenant with a Section 21 or Section 8 notice, formally asking them to move out of the property.

What does tenant default cover?

Tenant default covers the monthly rental payment if your tenant doesn’t pay. We've partnered with Simply Business to compare insurers and find a policy to suit your needs. All policies differ, but if you buy through us you get:

  • Up to £50,000, with no monthly rental limit
  • Lost rent for up to 12 months
  • Up to £50,000 towards legal expenses

You don’t have to pay an excess if you need to claim on tenant default cover when bought through us.

Because tenant default covers the property and not the tenant, you should still be covered if new tenants move in, as long as:

  • The new tenants have passed the usual checks
  • There’s a new tenancy agreement in place

You can get tenant default insurance alongside legal expenses insurance when you compare quotes with us. Legal expenses insurance covers:

  • Repossessing the property
  • Evicting tenants
  • Recovering missed rent payments (known as rent arrears)
  • Access to legal advice

Along with legal expenses cover, you also need to have property owners’ liability insurance when you get tenant default insurance.

Property owners’ liability insurance provides cover if a tenant or visitor seeks compensation for injury or for damage to their possessions at your rental property. You can choose between £2 million and £5 million of property owners’ liability cover.

What's not covered by rent guarantee insurance?

There’s certain things that rent guarantee insurance doesn't cover:

  • Commercial properties
  • Selling the property
  • Certain types of tenant
  • Tenants moving out
  • Tenants were already behind on rent payments (in arrears) before you bought the policy
  • More than one tenancy agreement at a single property
  • Lodgers or Airbnb guests
  • Commercial properties: Places like offices or workplaces. When you get a quote, select 'commercial insurance' to add rental income protection to your policy.
  • Selling the property: Your tenant default payments stop when you put the property on the market, since it’s assumed no rent is meant to be coming in.
  • Certain types of tenant: For example students or the unemployed are often not covered as they’re viewed as being at a higher risk of defaulting.
  • Tenants moving out : This includes if the tenants leave voluntarily or are evicted. You aren't covered while you find a new tenant.
  • Tenants were already behind on rent payments (in arrears) before you bought the policy: When your tenants fall into arrears, you usually have around 60 days to make a claim on an existing insurance policy. You can't buy a policy to cover an issue that's already happening.
  • More than one tenancy agreement at a single property: If you have multiple tenant agreements, you need a separate policy for each tenancy to stay covered.
  • Lodgers or Airbnb guests: Lodgers don’t have a legal rental contract, so it can be difficult to enforce any kind of legal guarantee for payment or recovering money. Airbnb payments should be automatic, and any further disputes can be taken up directly with Airbnb through AirCover. Or if you want more financial protection for your property, you can get a quote and compare Airbnb insurance with us.

Contract disputes aren’t included as part of tenant default cover. But they’re usually covered by the legal expenses insurance.

When you start the policy could also affect when you can claim. If you got your insurance before the tenancy agreement was signed, you’re usually unable to claim on the policy for 90 days. This varies between providers, so check before you buy.

Do I need rent protection insurance?

It’s up to you whether you get tenant default cover. But having it means your rental income is covered should your tenants fall behind on their payments.

The cost of living has put a strain on many people’s finances, and if your tenants struggle to pay this could leave you in a tricky position. That’s especially true if the rent payments form part of your income, or you have a mortgage in place on the property that the rent helps to cover.

Rent arrears can build up if your tenants haven’t been able to pay for months, and any repossession and eviction proceedings can also take a while. In these situations, landlords can find themselves hoping that their tenants choose to move out well before the process has run its course.

With landlord policies sold through us that include tenant default cover, you also get up to £50,000 towards your legal expenses. This includes access to legal advice should you need to repossess your property and evict the tenants.

How much does rent protection insurance cost?

The cost of your insurance policy varies depending on certain factors:

  • The size and type of property
  • Where the property is: Some areas are viewed as higher risk than others
  • Your tenants: Some tenants are viewed as higher risk than others
  • The level of cover you choose: The higher the amount of rent you need to cover, the higher the price is likely to be

Is there an excess on tenant default insurance?

There’s no excess to pay on any tenant default claims when you buy this cover through us.

If you buy through another provider, an excess may apply, so make sure you check this.

How do I get rent protection insurance?

When you get a landlord insurance quote through our site you can add rent protection insurance as an optional extra – although we refer to it as tenant default insurance.

To get a quote for landlord insurance you’ll need to share information including:

  • The location of the property
  • The property’s size, including the number of rooms
  • The property type
  • The status of the tenants, for example if they’re employed, students or retired
  • If you carry out background and identity checks on tenants. You should also tell us if you get independent references and credit checks on tenants or their guarantor.

To add tenant default insurance to your quote, you must:

  • Carry out background, identity and credit checks on your tenants
  • Include legal expenses cover

You must have satisfactory references for the tenants from the start of the tenancy, otherwise your cover may be invalid. It’s also vital that your property is let with an assured shorthold tenancy, or an assured tenancy if it’s in Scotland.

Compare rent guarantee insurance quotes

Who is Simply Business?

Our trusted partner Simply Business is one of the UK’s largest providers of landlord insurance, covering 315,000 landlords. They’re a certified B Corporation and their customers rate them 4.7/5 on Feefo.

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Does tenant default insurance cover legal disputes with tenants?

Tenant default cover replaces your lost rent, but legal expenses insurance covers legal costs relating to your tenant and the tenancy.

If you buy landlord insurance through us, you have to buy legal cover in order to get the rent guarantee policy.

Legal cover gives you access to a legal and tax advice helpline, which provides unlimited legal and tax advice on any issue related to letting out your property. It can also help cover fees for other tenant-related issues, for example if the tenant has damaged your property.

Types of landlord insurance

What our home insurance expert says

"Tenant default cover gives you a safety net if your tenant can’t pay their rent for any reason. When you get landlords insurance through Confused.com you also have to have legal protection in place. This adds an extra layer of security to protect you from potential legal disputes with your tenants."
Matthew Harwood, Home & lifestyle insurance expert at Confused.com
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