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Landlord insurance

Property cover without the premium prices

  • Buy insurance for your rental property and enjoy fantastic rewards, on us*
  • Buy landlord insurance buildings cover for less than £194/year[1]
  • Compare tailored quotes from 14 trusted providers[2] to find the right cover for you.

[1] 51% of our customers were quoted less than £193.70 for their building cover business insurance in December 2023. [2] Correct as of December 2023.

What is landlord insurance?

Landlord insurance is home insurance designed for rental properties. It could offer landlords more protection than standard home insurance. Also known as buy-to-let, property rental insurance or rental house insurance, landlord cover could give you financial protection if the building – or its contents – is damaged.

As with home insurance, landlord home insurance covers your rental property from fire, flooding, burst pipes and storms. 

Do I need landlord insurance?

You’re not legally required to take out landlord insurance. However, a standard home insurance policy might be invalid if you rent out your property to tenants and need to make a claim.

If you’re applying for a buy-to-let mortgage, your lender is likely to insist you have landlord insurance. 

Compare quotes in minutes

Make sure you’re covered as a landlord and have the insurance you need. We’ve teamed up with Simply Business so you can compare quotes from a range of insurance providers.

Start a quote

What does landlord insurance cover?

You can tailor your policy so it includes the right level of cover for you. Here’s what’s usually covered as standard:

  • Theft, fire and flood

  • The structure of the building 

  • Built-in features like fitted kitchens and bathrooms 

  • Furniture, carpets and curtains (this doesn’t include your tenants’ belongings). 

Additional cover for landlords  

You can usually add these as optional extras:

  • Your rental income – if damage means you can’t rent out the property  
  • Legal costs if you’re taken to court 
  • Void periods between tenants 
  • Accidental damage by tenants 
  • Malicious damage by tenants 
  • Public liability cover
  • Boiler breakdown 
  • Rent arrears.

Remember, the more cover you include on your policy, the more you’re likely to pay – so consider your budget carefully. 

What won’t landlord insurance cover?

Landlord insurance policies typically exclude:

  • Your tenants’ property – they’ll need to buy their own contents insurance
  • Wear and tear – buildings or contents damaged through normal use over time 
  • Damage by animals – you may be able to add pet damage to your policy at an extra cost. But landlord insurance won’t cover damage by pests like mice or wasps 
  • Deliberate damage caused by tenants – although you might be able to add cover for malicious damage.

What properties can be insured with landlord insurance? 

Depending on the type of property you own, you may want to consider:

  • Residential – if you own a buy-to-let property you rent out
  • Commercial – if the property is a business premises 
  • Multi-property – if you own more than one buy-to-let  
  • House in multiple occupation (HMO) insurance – this isn’t normally covered by standard landlord insurance.  

What landlord insurance do I need?

There are several types of landlord insurance available. Deciding which landlord insurance you need will depend on your circumstances.

You might want to consider:

Landlord buildings insurance

Landlord building insurance covers loss or damage to the building. It could pay out if say, a fire or flood damages your property. If your rental property is in a block of flats, buildings insurance is likely to be covered by the leaseholder but it’s always wise to check. 

Landlord contents insurance

If you’re letting a furnished property, you might want landlord contents insurance to cover your belongings. You could also add accidental damage cover, in case your tenants accidentally damage your belongings.

Rental income protection

This could pay out if your building is damaged and you can’t rent it out. 

Rent guarantee insurance

Rent guarantee insurance could offer you protection if your tenants can’t pay their rent. 

Property owners’ liability (public liability) insurance

Public liability insurance covers your legal costs if a tenant is injured at the property and makes a claim against you.

Employers’ liability insurance

Employers’ liability insurance is a legal requirement if you employ anyone at your rental property.

Unoccupied property cover

Unoccupied property insurance could be useful if you’re renovating the house or flat before renting it out.

Landlord emergency cover

Landlord emergency cover could give you round-the-clock assistance if an emergency needs sorting at one of your properties, such as a burst pipe or a broken-down boiler.

See if you could save with a landlord insurance comparison

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How much does landlord insurance cost?

Landlord insurance can vary in price, depending on your circumstances and the level of cover you want.

Some factors to consider when comparing prices of landlord insurance include: 

The cover level

Make sure you’re not paying for cover and add-ons you don’t need.

The property’s location

If your property is in a high crime area, you’ll probably pay more for your insurance.

Your property’s size and age

Both will affect the cost of maintenance and repairs.

Your tenants

Students are considered higher risk, for example.

Your claims history

Claiming on your insurance will mean you’ll likely pay a higher premium when you renew.

How you pay

Paying annually for your insurance is often cheaper than paying monthly. This is because interest is typically added to monthly instalments.

Commercial landlord insurance premiums vary, so always compare landlord insurance policies to get a deal that’s right for you.

How to get a discount on landlord insurance

You may not be able to get a discount, but there are ways you could help reduce the cost of your premium.

Install good security

Solid locks, burglar alarms, and CCTV could make your property less attractive to thieves. Insurance providers may see it as less of a risk and reduce your premium.

Increase your excess 

Voluntary excess is the amount you pay towards a claim. Increasing this could lower the cost of your premium – but make sure it’s at a level you can afford.

Avoid unoccupied periods

Insurance providers consider empty properties to be a bigger risk, so avoid gaps between tenants if you can.

Combine your insurance needs

Packaging different types of insurance into a single policy could be cheaper than buying them separately.

Choose tenants carefully

Insurance providers consider certain tenants to be riskier than others.

The best landlord insurance doesn’t always come from the biggest providers – you could find a great deal with a provider you’ve never heard of.

Author image Anna McEntee

What our expert says...

“The cost of landlord insurance varies, depending on the size of the property and type of cover you choose. You could help to reduce the cost of your insurance policy by showing that you’re on top of risk management. This means having good security in place and carrying out reference checks when a new tenant moves in.”

- Anna McEntee, Business Insurance expert

What do I need to get a quote?

When you start a landlord insurance quote with us, you’ll need some basic information to hand:

  • Your current insurance policy documents (if you have them)
  • Your property details
  • Basic tenant information
  • The level of cover you need 

We’ll ask a few questions, so we can send you a list of suitable quotes. 

Start a quote

Why use Compare the Market?

We’ve partnered with small business insurance experts, Simply Business, to find insurance tailored to your needs.

We search landlord insurance from 14 leading providers[2]

Rated 4.8/5 on Trustpilot[3]

[2] Correct as of December 2023.

[3] As of January 2024, Compare the Market had an average rating of 4.8 out of 5 from 38,330 people who left a review on Trustpilot. The score 4.8 corresponds to the Star Label ‘Excellent’.

Frequently asked questions

Can I just get ordinary home insurance?

Ordinary home insurance or flat insurance may not cover a property you don’t live in. This is because:

  • You won’t see the property often so won’t know what state it’s in
  • Tenants might ignore maintenance issues like damp, which could get out of hand
  • Your tenants may cause careless, or even malicious, damage
  • If a tenant is hurt in your property, you could be held liable.

Regular home insurance isn’t designed for the issues landlords might face. Your policy might not cover your claim – or if a tenant makes a claim against you. That’s why it’s a good idea to compare landlord insurance policies. 

How do I make a claim on my landlord insurance policy?

First, if a crime has taken place, call the police and get a crime reference number, as your insurance provider is likely to need it. 

Then contact your insurance provider. Many have 24-hour helplines. Your insurance provider can then guide you through the process. 

Can I get landlord insurance for multiple properties?

It’s possible to get insurance for multiple properties if you rent out more than one. There’s a couple of options: 

  • Insure each property individually – you can compare policies tailored to suit each property.
  • Multi-property landlord insurance – your insurance provider may be willing to offer you a multi-property deal. We can’t help you compare policies and prices for this, but you can contact insurance providers directly for a quote.

Is landlord insurance tax deductible?

Landlord insurance is tax deductible. This means you could typically claim your expenses to reduce your tax bill.

You should only claim for expenses wholly incurred from renting out the property. For example: 

  • Insurance
  • Maintenance and repairs (not cosmetic improvements)
  • Water rates, council tax, gas and electricity
  • Letting agent fees, management fees and accountant fees.

Do I need landlord insurance if I live in the property?

In some instances, you’ll need landlord insurance if you’re living at the property. It depends on whether the person you’re renting to is a lodger or a tenant.

What’s the difference? Someone is a tenant if there’s an agreement that you can’t enter their room without permission. If this is the case, you’ll need specialist landlord insurance, specifying that you live in the property. 

A lodger is someone who lives in your home and shares living space with you. If this is the case, you can usually extend your home insurance to cover this.

Does landlord insurance cover loss of rent?

Landlord insurance can cover loss of rent, but this isn’t usually included in standard cover – you’ll need to add rent guarantee insurance to your policy.

If you can’t rent the property because of fire or flood damage, you should be covered (as long as this is included in your policy).

Rent guarantee insurance could cover your rental income if your tenants can’t pay their rent. It could protect you for up to a year of lost rent, giving you time to resolve the situation with your tenant. If the dispute ends up going to court, it could cover your legal costs.

Do I need to take out boiler cover as a landlord?

It’s the responsibility of the landlord to take care of boiler repairs and servicing. Boiler cover isn’t a legal requirement, but it could protect you from an unexpected bill down the line.

Page last reviewed on 25 JANUARY 2024
by Anna McEntee