I have loss of rent cover and my client has left the property owing me money. Can I claim?

Posted: 4th Jun 2014

Unfortunately, no you cannot. If your tenants were forced to vacate your property as a result of an insured risk, your property insurance may offer you contributions towards your loss of rental income and emergency accommodation expenses for your tenants.

However, tenants fleeing leaving large rent arrears would not be covered under those clauses.

Although there is no guaranteed method of avoiding such things happening, it is always highly advisable to move quickly to deal with any non or late payment of rent. Whatever might have been the case in the past, today tenant eviction can be undertaken relatively quickly and smoothly – providing you make sure you comply with all required legal processes.

You should never, of course, use any form of direct or indirect threat with your tenants, unless it conforms to the law.

For example, formally notifying them of your intention to seek an eviction notice might be considered to be legal at the appropriate stage. By contrast, refusing to attend to an emergency repair until they paid your rent arrears might not be legal.

If you take qualified legal advice and keep on top of any arrears situation as it arises, you should hopefully be able to keep your financial exposures here to relatively manageable sums.

In some cases, unpaid rent arrears can arise due to genuinely regrettable circumstances, such as redundancy or illness robbing your tenants of their ability to earn money.

It might be a sensible investment on your part to draw to their attention in advance the advantages of seeking tenants’ insurance to help protect them against such risks.