Insurance tips for holiday letting

AirBnB and Stayz are a growing trend as a holiday accommodation option.

You may even have considered letting your own home out when you are away for a little bit of extra cash; however have you ever considered how doing so may affect your insurance?

A recent tragedy at an AirBnB home on the Sunshine Coast, where a swing set fell and landed on a four year old boy who later passed away, and also injured a seven year old boy, has had a lot of people considering their insurance obligations for the first time.
 
It is important to consider whether or not your existing public liability insurance would cover death or injury to a guest. You should also consider if your existing property and contents insurance would cover damage resulting from a guest.
 
Your regular household insurance and public liability insurance will most likely not cover a paid guest. As a property owner you have now engaged in paid holiday letting, which is a commercial business. 
 
Businesses such as AirBnB and Stayz may provide some level of cover for the property owner but they do have a number of exclusions, for example, if the owner is negligent.
 
In the case above – was the swing set old? Was it not secured properly? As a property owner, how confident are you that your home is compliant with local Council regulations, fire safety regulations and so on?
 
The flipside of the issue is, as a guest booking this accommodation, if you are not covered by the property owners insurance for any death or injury, what this would mean for your family. The situation also becomes more complex in regards to this style of short term letting overseas.
 
If you are considering using your property as short term holiday letting, be sure to contact your insurance provider first to discuss exclusions on your policy, or changes to your policy that maybe required; and the costs to change your cover.