Building and Contents Insurance

Can anyone advise if I legally require Contents insurance? I already have Buildings Insurance as part of my service charge but I keep getting this flagged up in Openrent, I just wondered if it’s mandatory?

Hi there building insurance is the landlords responsibility and contents is the tenants responsibility as it’s their items

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its not mandatory, yet it is strongly advisable in some instances yet this depends on what and how your renting, not 1 answer for all situations and im not privy to your situation as your question is too limited to answer specifically.

If you are a landlord - NO

If you are the tenant - check your tenancy agreement. Some require that you provide proof of contents insurance to cover the landlords contents, e.g. carpets, curtains and appliances.

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Chris35 is correct, up to a point:

  • If the landlord has provided items for your use, such as furniture and white goods like a cooker and washing machine, I would expect the landlord to have them insured or not at the landlord’s risk.
  • However, if a clause exists in your agreement for you to insure them, then you have agreed to take out insurance as specified in your contract with the landlord. But read below before using an insurer!
  • If the contract with the landlord specifies that you are responsible for their maintenance and repair, then it is up to you whether or not to get them insured.
  • If you have agreed to take out insurance, and it has not been defined, or specified by whom, then do as I suggest in my next two paragraphs.
  • If there is no ‘insurance’ clause in your agreement, and no assignment of responsibility to you for ‘contents’ maintenance and repair, then it is up to you whether or not to insure your personally supplied items. You are not responsible for the landlord supplied items in this case, unless specified by contract.
  • Your personally supplied items include things such as furniture and computing devices (phones and laptops). In my case, all my furniture is second hand, but I place a high value on my family computers. Having shopped around, then read the policies offered to me, I felt it was not worth taking out insurance, despite the re-assurances I had over the phone from those companies. So I do not have any insurance in the flat I am renting, but as a landlord, I have insured everything in my home that I have rented out while I am overseas. What have I done? I am ‘self-insured’! That is, I am the ‘insurer’, as I am willing to take the risk of having to pay for maintenance, repair and loss of my old furniture and family computing devices. So, even if you have been asked to insure the goods, depending on how it is worded, you can be the insurer. That is, you take responsibility, and not pass that responsibility to another organisation called an insurance company. That is my view.

If I was asked to insure, and I decided to take the risk, then I am comfortable in arguing in a court, if need be, that self-insurance met and satisfied the contract clause requirement for the goods to be insured!

Now, I do understand that the landlord may want you to pay for the landlord’s property, as otherwise, if severe damage or loss occurs, then the deposit will not be enough to cover those losses. He cannot insist on you insuring your personal items. Knowing most people, even if the landlord has asked for you to insure something, it is probably so wholly that you can be self-insured.

Note, the landlord cannot expect you to insure his building structure. That is their responsibility

I hope that helps. Note, this is not legal advice, and as far as my experience goes, no-one else on this forum is either, but I am confident in what I have written. To be absolutely sure, consult a lawyer!