It’s a sad truth that at one point or another, all landlords will have to deal with damages to their properties, which is why having a comprehensive landlord insurance policy is essential. Damages to properties can be caused by a number of things, including the weather, your tenants, theft or just wear and tear over time.
The important thing to know when it comes to property damages, is what you need to do in order to fix them in a timely manner while protecting your business. Some landlords rely on the fact that their landlord insurance provider will help them and therefore make no plans of their own, which can actually make the process longer.
At Just Landlords, we have helped countless landlords deal with property damage claims, which means we know how to get you back on your feet as quickly as possible.
One of the biggest problems with property damage, especially if a large portion of your property has been affected, is that it often takes you by surprise. Even though this is often the case, there are some things that you can do to plan ahead, such as:
- When taking or renewing your landlord insurance, ensure that all paperwork is in order and check that you have the right amount of cover, especially if your property portfolio has changed.
- Talk to your tenants on a regular basis – when an issue arises in one of your properties, it’s quite common for your tenants to panic and therefore they may not be too helpful when you are trying to sort things out. Having a good relationship can make the whole process a lot easier.
- Budget and save every month – even if things are going well, you never know when your business may take a hit. However, if your finances are in order, the experience will be a lot less stressful.
What Do I Do First?
When you first receive the news that something has happened to one of your properties, a million questions will start going through your head, with one of the main questions being: What do I do first? Some people are unsure whether they need to call their tenants, police, landlord insurance provider or even their bank first, however, this all depends on what type of issue you are dealing with.
For example, if your property has been damaged due to theft or vandalism, the first thing you will need to do is contact the police. This is so when it comes to making an insurance claim, you can provide an incident number, which will be used when processing your claim. If the damage has been due to criminals, your insurance provider will work closely with the police to make sure that all paperwork is in order and that the matter is resolved as quickly as possible.
When it comes to your tenants, the best thing to do is contact them on a regular basis in order to advise them of what you are doing to remedy the issue. If there is a huge amount of damage, you may have to move your tenants into another property or even a hotel until their property is safe again. Your tenants may have concerns when it comes to this, so make sure you are available to meet them face-to-face and go through everything with them.
Once you have contacted your landlord insurance company and have arranged suitable living arrangements for your tenants, you will need to keep up with the repairs that are being carried out on your property. This can often be time-consuming, so make sure you put some extra time aside to ensure everything is dealt with in a timely and cost-effective manner.
Another thing to consider going forward is what caused the property damage in the first place, and if there are any actions you can take to guarantee that this won’t happen again to any other properties in your portfolio!
- 4 ways to keep your properties safe. (2013). Retrieved from the Just Landlords website: https://www.justlandlords.co.uk/blog/4-ways-to-keep-your-properties-safe/
- Fire Safety Information Guide for Landlords. (2014). Retrieved from the Safelincs website: https://www.safelincs.co.uk/fire-safety-information-for-landlords/
- How to Make a Claim. (n.d.). Retrieved from the Just Landlords website: https://www.justlandlords.co.uk/how_to_make_a_claim.php
Disclaimer: This article is for information only and is not official guidance, FCA approved, or legally precise. Just Landlords has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but make no warranty as to its accuracy. If you require information on landlord legislation or best practices please contact your legal representative. For details see our conditions.