One thing that puts some people off using Airbnb is the thought of strangers staying in their personal space, and there have been horror stories of guests throwing raucous parties or damaging properties. To protect against this, Airbnb offers a ‘Host guarantee’ with free protection up to $1,000,000 (£763,425), as well as a 24/7 helpline in case of any issues. It does, however, recommend that you also have appropriate home insurance in place.
But you need to be careful here, according to Compare the Market's insurance expert Chris King. "Normally, from a home insurance perspective, you’re insured for yourself as the policyholder, plus family members who live with you. If you have strangers coming and going, this increases your risk profile and some insurance providers won't touch this kind of risk."
If you’re letting with Airbnb, you’ll need to tell your insurance provider, and you could find that they want to cancel your policy or not offer you a renewal. But don't worry, says Chris, "you should be easily able to find the right cover elsewhere".
When you do get cover, however, you might find there are endorsements or exclusions or the insurance provider may want to charge you a little more. This can depend on how often you have people staying in your property.
There are other things to look out for too: letting or subletting property can infringe mortgage or rental rules, so it’s always worth checking with your mortgage provider or landlord.