While you may not be like the Queen who could attract an estimated AirBnB rental of £1,034,291.43 per day for renting out Buckingham Palace, the letting platform is widely known and very popular with some homeowners – if you’ve a spare room or are planning to leave home to take your own holidays, AirBnB offers a relatively easy way of earning some extra cash.
Its popularity is hardly surprising, given that your listing on the site may be seen by an estimated 500 million travellers worldwide, in 191 countries, attracting an average of 2 million guests every night – according to AirBnB’s own statistics.
Things fall apart
For all the millions of successful overnight stays, however, AirBnB hosts also have their fair share of horror stories – when seemingly “lovely” guests nevertheless leave their host’s home in a terrible state, costing thousands of pounds to put right.
One of the latest such experiences is recounted by a homeowner’s story in the Daily Mail newspaper – it makes horrific reading.
If you are planning on AirBnB-ing your own home, of course, you want to be counted among the millions of success stories rather than have the rogue guest or guests from hell – the trouble is that it might be difficult to tell them apart, until it’s too late.
That is why AirBnB-ing your home goes hand in glove with your arranging suitable AirBnB insurance to safeguard the precious contents of your home – not to mention its fittings, fixtures and furniture – against damage or even theft by irresponsible guests.
If you don’t get AirBnB insurance, you cannot rely on your standard home buildings and contents cover to protect you. This is because your home insurance is not designed to cover business practices, such as letting to AirBnB guests. In fact, if you do use your property for AirBnB and don’t tell your insurer, you could find that your current buildings insurance cover may even lapse.
What about the AirBnB Host Guarantee?
AirBnB itself is well aware of the potential for a small handful of guests to cause damage to a host’s home and, therefore, offers a so-called Host Guarantee programme designed to compensate householders for damage that is caused in excess of any security deposit the host was prudent enough to require.
The maximum amount of compensation – some $1 million (approximately £770,000) – might appear generous enough, but it specifically excludes liability claims against you by guests who have been injured or had their property damaged, theft loss or damage to your cash or securities, jewellery, artwork, collectibles, or damage caused by pets. Neither does the Host Guarantee cover against what AirBnB designates fair wear and tear.
Indeed, AirBnB itself concedes that its Host Guarantee programme is no substitute for homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, which you are responsible for arranging separately.
In fact, some critics have complained that there is little value in AirBnB’s Host Guarantee, after one host submitted a claim for the damage caused by a guest, only to be told that it was impossible to establish whether the guest or guests had indeed been responsible for causing the damage.
Given the restrictions of the AirBnB Host Guarantee – and the reported difficulties experienced by some hosts in substantiating a claim – you may consider separate, specialist AirBnB insurance to be an essential safeguard.
AirBnB insurance – for homeowners and tenants alike – maintains the protection you need when you are AirBnB-ing your home. Not only is it a dependable insurance product, but if you arrange it through us here at Cover4LetProperty, we’ll even help you submit your claim if anything should go wrong.
If you are considering putting your property on AirBnB, we have a number of AirBnB property insurance solutions available. So, please get in touch with us on 01702 606301 – we’d be delighted to help.