Landlord Insurance in Massachusetts

What is Landlord Insurance?

Landlords have a lot invested in the properties that they rent, and they need to protect their investments. Landlord insurance provides Massachusetts landlords with a way to protect their properties from a number of potential risks.

Landlord insurance is a specialized form of property insurance that’s designed for people who rent residential properties. Landlords use landlord policies to insure single-family houses, condominiums and multi-family buildings that they lease to tenants.

What Coverages Do Landlord Policies Offer?

Landlord policies, like many property insurance policies, offer a variety of coverages. Two main coverages that most landlord policies have are landlord liability insurance coverage and landlord property insurance coverage.

Landlord liability insurance coverage helps protect landlords from potential liability lawsuits. For example, a policy’s landlord liability coverage might cover expenses associated with lawsuits filed by tenants who were injured and believe the landlord is responsible for their injury. In most cases, landlord liability insurance coverage will pay for both legal expenses and settlements (up to the coverage’s limit) for any covered lawsuits.

Landlord property insurance coverage is used to insure a landlord's physical property against certain perils. A policy, for instance, might protect a leased building and any secondary structures (e.g. a detached garage, fence or shed) from fire, vandalism, burglaries and similar incidents. 

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Coverages Often Included in a Landlord Policy

Along with these two primary coverages, landlord policies may also offer a variety of other protections. Some other coverages that a policy might include as standard or optional coverages are:

  • Loss of Income Coverage, which might offer compensation for income that’s lost due to a covered incident
  • Rent Guarantee Coverage, which may offer compensation if a tenant refuses to pay their rent
  • Legal Assistance Coverage, which might help pay legal fees for incidents that aren’t related to liability suits
  • Landlord Contents Coverage, which may protect items that a landlord owns and keeps in a rented unit (e.g. appliances)

Do Landlord Policies Cover Tenants?

Landlord policies protect landlords from covered risks. These policies aren’t designed to protect tenants or provide them with any coverages. Tenants should purchase their own renters insurance policies, which are made for renters.

Do Massachusetts Landlords Need to Purchase a Landlord Policy?

Landlords in Massachusetts usually aren’t under a legal obligation to have insurance. Landlords who have loans against their property, however, are frequently required by the terms of their loan to at least carry coverage for the building they lease out. Lenders typically include such a requirement to ensure that their investment in the building will be protected if something happens to the property.

Landlords who aren’t required by banks to purchase insurance often still should have coverage. Without insurance, recovering from a fire, burglary or liability suit would be financially taxing, and possibly even force a landlord to declare bankruptcy.

What Factors Affect How Much Landlord Policies Cost?

Insurers consider many factors when determining landlord policies’ rates. A few of the things they take into account include a landlord’s claim history, how many units are in a building, a building’s location and construction, and what coverages have been selected.

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How Can Massachusetts Landlords Get Landlord Insurance?

Landlords in Massachusetts who would like quotes on landlord insurance policies from different insurers should contact an independent insurance agent near them. An independent agent can request quotes from any insurer in the state, so they can show a landlord exactly how much each insurance company will charge for a policy.

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