Perhaps you have a second home in a beach side destination, or near a ski resort. Maybe your home is near a stadium that is hosting a big game or event that people from all over the world will be traveling to attend. Many people are turning to short term rentals to make extra income from their homes.
Online platforms such as Airbnb, Vrbo, HomeAway, and many others make it easy to rent out your home online and make supplemental income. Whether it’s for a night, a weekend, or longer, renting your home online has never been easier.
Renting your home may be easy, but it’s important to understand the liability ramifications in doing so. The online platforms are not responsible for any injuries or damages that may take place at your home while it is rented out. That is the responsibility of the homeowner. What if a short term renter accidentally starts a fire and damages the home? What if a short term renter slips and falls in the home?
Most insurance companies have decided that their policies will not cover short term rentals. Meaning, if you do not speak to your agent or insurance company prior to renting out your home, you may not have any insurance protection in the event something goes wrong.
Further, when you first purchased your homeowners, condo, or secondary home insurance policy, you may have signed an application that stated the house was to be occupied by the owner (you), and not tenants.
Many states, including Massachusetts, have filed regulation that requires short term rentals to carry certain insurance coverage that the standard homeowners & condo policy may not provide.
Before you place your home on a short term rental site, speak with an insurance agent. Knowing the landscape and having proper insurance will let you earn that extra income while being protected if something does goes wrong.