Where To Obtain Landlord Insurance Quotes?

Should you be in the throes of buying your first investment property to rent out, one of the things that you will no doubt wish to arrange is landlord insurance to protect things like the building and contents you are going to place in the property. It may not be a legal requirement to do so but it is a sensible course of action to take.

In which case, you are probably wondering where is the best place to obtain one or more landlord insurance quotes. It should not surprise you to read that, as with most things in life, there are a number of options.

It is worth noting that there are not as many companies that provide landlords insurance as there are that arrange ordinary house insurance on a private residential property but it is still important to shop around to try to find the best deal. Of course, when we say: ‘ best deal” we are referring to trying to get the exact level of cover that you require for the lowest premium. You may find that these do not go hand in hand.

So, let’s have a look at some of the places where you can get such quotes from: –

High Street Insurance Brokers

If you prefer to meet someone face to face to discuss and arrange landlord insurance there is likely to be one or more insurance brokers in the high street of the town or city that you live in. You cou

ld call into their offices to enquire if they arrange this specialist form of insurance and, if they do, can they arrange quotes from one or more companies. Obviously, the more companies they can get quotes from, then the more likely they are of finding you a competitive quote(s).

Banks/Building Societies

It is quite possible that if you are arranging a buy to let mortgage through a bank or building society that they can also arrange to provide you with a quote(s) for landlord insurance.

There are a number of price comparison websites that provide landlord insurance quotes
The Internet provides access to quotes for landlord insurance

Internet

This may be the most popular place to obtain landlord insurance quotes these days as it is so convenient to do so at any time of the day or night. All you would have to do is key something like: “cheap landlord insurance quotes” into your browser’s search box and you will be presented with a number of websites that include specialist brokers, insurance companies and price comparison websites offering such quotes.

In the case of a price comparison website, who should provide access to a number of landlord insurance companies, you need only key in the requested information once and within minutes may be presented with a variety of quotes and details of the cover available. It may even be possible to go on risk and pay for the cover straightaway.

You will be pleased to hear that you can obtain landlord insurance quotes through our partner via this website.

How To Vet Tenants

Making sure that you have got the perfect tenant occupying your rental property is not an easy thing to achieve. Getting it wrong, sadly to say, can prove costly as your property could be left in quite a state. Landlords tend to have their own process for vetting tenants whether doing it himself or herself or using a letting agent.

There are no doubt some experienced landlords out their who just go on their “gut feeling” when meeting a prospective tenant for the first time but there is a lot to be said for having a set vetting process in place. Below are a few suggestions that you may wish to consider.

Tenant Referencing Companies

You can go on the Internet and find companies that provide a tenant referencing service. This could include them doing a credit reference search on the prospective tenant and contacting their previous landlord for a reference. A fee is obviously payable.

A landlord should take whatever precautions they can to avoid this happening
You don’t want tenants that do this!

Checking Identification and Verifying Address

You can do both these things by seeing their passport and/or photo card driving license and looking at things like utility bills and bank statements.

Landlord’s Reference

You could write to any previous landlord(s) to enquire as to their general suitability as a tenant, whether rental payments were met and what state the property was left in when it was vacated.

Employer’s Reference

You could write to the employer to confirm things like their employee’s salary as this will provide an indication as to whether the rent is affordable. The length of time they have been employed would give an indication of longevity and a general character reference would give you some reassurance.

Credit Reference Search

A credit reference search will confirm if the prospective tenant is on the voters roll and provide details of their credit history. This should reveal if they are bankrupt, have any County Court Judgements (CCJs) or have defaulted on any liabilities.

Due to the financial climate that we have seen in the UK in recent years, an increasing number of people have a bad credit history so, just because someone has missed one month’s minimum credit card payment does not mean to say that you should not consider them to rent your property. However, if they had been in arrears with a mortgage you may decide to take a different view.

Bank Statements

As well as confirming an address, as referred to above, you could also ask to see bank statements covering a period of three months. These could show the level of net salary and whether the account is under pressure i.e. are direct debits being returned unpaid and/or is the overdraft facility being exceeded at times.

We do hope that the above is of help in ensuring that your prospective tenant turns out to be one that is a pleasure to have residing in your rental property.

The Pros And Cons Of Letting To Students

One of the decisions that you will need to make when deciding the type of property you want to buy to let out and where you would like to buy it, is what sort of tenants you prefer. Yes, it goes without saying that you want a tenant that is no trouble, keeps the property clean and tidy and always pays the rent on time. So, let’s have a look at where the student fits into this equation.

a lot of the space in a student let property can be used for bedroom accomodation
Even the lounge in a student let property may be used as a bedroom

Advantages of letting to students

Well, there is certainly an ever-increasing supply of students as more and more decide to go to university. Of course, in their first year, many will choose halls of residence and some will continue to live at home with their parents but there are still significant numbers looking for private lettings.

Students are very forgiving when it comes to the standard of accommodation. They do not expect nor could they afford to live in a property that is beautifully decorated and fitted out with an expensive kitchen and white goods. Therefore, you can afford to just give it a lick of paint and put in a budget kitchen. The furnishings can be cheap and cheerful being fit for purpose. This enables you to keep your expenditure to a minimum.

You can usually get more students into a property than if it were a typical family of four as the lounge could be used to provide bedroom accommodation.

Disadvantages of student lets

Students are not the tidiest or most careful of people so you are more likely to have to keep your eye on what is going on at the property and be faced with minor repair and cleaning costs when they vacate for the summer holidays.

During the summer period, depending upon the terms of the rental agreement, your rental income may drop.

The value of the property is likely not to rise as much as an investment property let to other types of tenants.

It is not as easy to confirm a student’s credit worthiness as they are less likely to have a significant credit rating with the credit reference agencies.

So, we hope that the above is of some help in deciding if the student letting market is for you.

Landlord Tips

There is an awful lot to think about if you are embarking into property investment with a view to letting out the property so we hope that the following tips for landlords will prove informative whether you are either considering such a venture or have already entered the lettings marketplace.

becoming a landlord is potentially a big financial commitment
There is a great deal involved in letting out a property

Rental Potential

There is absolutely no point in purchasing a property to rent out unless it is going to provide you with a good return on your investment. In this respect, you should seriously consider seeking the advice of a number of specialist letting agents to get their opinion on both its suitability as a rental property and the level of rental income it might command in what is a very competitive marketplace.

References

Unless the prospective tenant is well known to you, ensure that references are obtained.

Tenancy Agreements

Even if you were going to let the property to your best friend or a relative you should make sure that a formal tenancy agreement is drawn up between all parties. We have heard of a number of instances of this not being done and problems occurring as a result. It is just not worth the risk.

Landlord Insurance

Whilst you are under no legal obligation to insure your rental property and any contents unless a mortgage lender makes it a condition of the advance, it would be a sensible course of action to take. After all, you have no doubt invested a substantial sum in this business venture and surely you would want to protect it.

Further information about insurance is detailed elsewhere on our website.

Maintenance

No doubt you have spent a significant sum when buying the property and may well have spent further monies on fitting it out and decoration. It is easier to keep a property in pristine condition if it is regularly maintained rather than to not bother for 2 or 3 years. A property that is not well maintained may not command as high a rental income as one that is well looked after. Either you or your letting agent should visit the property periodically to check the condition of the building, fixtures, fittings and contents that you own.

Hopefully the above is of benefit to you.