While being a landlord can be a rewarding role, it is a challenging role. You have many responsibilities, and you will also find many tenants think landlords should be responsible for more than they are.

While issues like contents insurance are an issue for tenants to deal with, it is often helpful for landlords to discuss the importance of this insurance.

If contents insurance is part of your rental agreement, a tenant should have it. A growing number of landlords are looking for proof of contents insurance when letting to tenants. Also, some mortgage lenders require landlords to have sufficient insurance, and for tenants to have contents insurance in place, as per the terms and conditions of their loan.

Therefore, while contents insurance isn’t the concern of landlords directly, if a tenant doesn’t have it, it could cause problems for you. At The Letting Line, we liaise with landlords and tenants. We are more than happy to provide assistance in this matter, minimising the stress for landlords.

Nationwide have carried out a study of 1,000 tenants, and it found only 52% of tenants have contents insurance. The average content covered by insurance in a rental property amounts to £25,126.

Nationwide claims that the 48% of respondents who don’t carry any content insurance cover equates to 2.13 million households.

Content insurance is not the landlord’s responsibility

Worryingly, close to one-fifth of tenants believe it is the landlord’s responsibility to arrange contents insurance. Also, other tenants decide against paying for content insurance as a way of minimising their monthly expenses.

Nationwide has highlighted the issue that having no home insurance cover could result in tenants being in breach of their tenancy agreement. The study found one third of tenants didn’t know if content insurance was required as part of their tenancy agreement.

Many landlords demand proof of content insurance

39% of tenants have been required to arrange contents insurance, and more than two-thirds of landlords have asked to see proof of content insurance before they signed a tenancy agreement.

Examples of items covered by content insurance include:

  • Any personal furnishings in the property, i.e. furniture

  • Bicycle

  • Clothes and jewellery

  • Electrical equipment, i.e. TVs, Blu-ray players, games consoles, speakers, stereos

  • Mobile phones – as standard, our contents cover provides up to £300 per claim for mobile phones (excluding accidental damage. However, this is included if you take out the Accidental Damage extension)

  • Soft furnishings, i.e. bedding and cushions

  • Valuables*, including but not limited to: jewellery, clocks, collector’s items

Reasons tenants should hold content insurance include:

  • If your personal possessions are lost or damaged, having insurance in place means they can be replaced quickly

  • If your possessions are accidentally damaged, you can feel confident about replacing them

  • With a tenant’s liability insurance element in your cover, you can get support in paying for any damage in your property

Darren Black, head of general insurance at Nationwide Building Society, says: “It’s concerning that many renters don’t have contents insurance and are living under the mistaken belief that their landlord has cover in place to protect their belongings if they are lost, stolen or damaged. They could also be putting their tenancy at risk as many landlords stipulate that they must have cover in place as part of their tenancy agreement. When finances are tight, insurance can seem like an unnecessary expense, but without it you could end up losing everything you own.”

If you are looking for guidance or assistance in the Enfield rental market, we can help. At The Letting Line, we are a specialist letting and property management agent serving Enfield, Barnet, Potters Bar, Brookmans Park and surrounding areas.

We can arrange a free valuation for you, and if you are looking to contact us, please call us on 020 8342 1234.