More than two million people in 192 countries and 33,000 cities are doing it: renting out their own home, their second home or guest room as overnight accommodation through the Airbnb website. By doing so, they are also taking a risk: do temporary tenants take care of your living space? CED provides tips on how to keep the risk of damage as low as possible.
It is a fact that people treat other people’s possessions differently to how they treat their own. Allowing living space to be used temporarily by someone you don’t know therefore entails risks. To reduce the risk of loss or damage, you can insure yourself, but that isn’t particularly easy.
Airbnb rental is often not covered by a standard insurance package. “As soon as you rent out or lend something that you insure, insurers see this as an increase in the risk to be covered, and as a private individual, such a risk is not necessarily covered by your own insurance”, says Marcel Buchner, manager of Valuations and Inspections at CED. “Insurance companies are cautious because even the owner of the premises has no control over what happens during rental.”
Airbnb Host Guarantee
As a response to this, Airbnb has introduced Airbnb Host Guarantee. Under certain conditions, this programme offers compensation up to a maximum of 800,000 Euros. However, this is not meant to replace home or contents insurance, as, for example, it does not include personal liability. In addition, the host first must find out if their own home insurance will pay out, before they can claim under the Host Guarantee.
Undertake action yourself
Back to square one? Not necessarily! There is a way in which you can increase the insurer’s willingness to provide cover for your rented property. “An insurer needs clarity about what is of value and the risk of damage or loss”, says Marcel. “In these cases the insurable interest is often too small for insurers to perform an inspection themselves, but you can provide them with that clarity by means of a risk inspection.”
Valuation and risk inspection
“Protecting value starts with an objective evaluation of value and risks”, says Marcel. “ Begin, therefore, by establishing the value of your Airbnb home. You can do that by taking photographs or through a valuation report. In this way, as a host, you know what your possessions are worth.” You can then arrange for a risk inspection to be carried out. “Our risk experts will investigate where the risks lie in your living space in terms of, for example, fire and water damage, and you can then send this report to your insurer.”
Tenant-proof your home
Perhaps the very best advice for preventing loss and damage is to make the interior of your home more robust; the inspection report will also include prevention advice. “If you know where the weak spots are, you can do something about them, and this often involves doing nothing more than making small adjustments, for example: covering latex wall paint with an extra protective layer, choosing a sturdy kitchen worktop, making sure that the living space is easy to keep clean, installing a drip tray beneath the washing machine, laying a hard-wearing laminate floor and protecting vulnerable corners of walls with protective strips. This is how you can make your Airbnb home ‘tenant-proof’!”
Would you like to protect the value of your home before you let through Airbnb? Read more about CED’s valuations and risk inspections on our website.