Deirdre McCarthy, Manager Insuremyhouse.ie warns that of the 12,000+ people who rent out their property, either in full or in part through Airbnb, may not be covered on their general home insurance policy in the event of a claim, if they fail to disclose their rental activities to their insurer.
Deirdre McCarthy of www.insuremyhouse.ie cautioned,“It has been brought to our attention by several insurers that there seems to be a lack of awareness amongst Airbnb hosts of their obligation to make the necessary amendments to their home insurance policy to reflect their sharing economy activity. Unfortunately, homeowners have seen claims denied in recent years because they did not do this”.Insuremyhouse.ie say that in the event of a claim, even if it’s completely unrelated to the Airbnb hosting activity, an insurer can and most likely will decide to reject the application on the basis of non-disclosure of the Airbnb use of the property.
Deirdre McCarthy advised, “People have been left not only stunned but significantly out of pocket because their claims have been denied as a result of inadequate cover. We really want to inform people and make it abundantly clear that if they rent out their home through Airbnb, then they must notify their insurer. Such activities would be classified as an additional risk by insurers – which is understandable considering 47% of hosts rent out their entire properties – which means they have to vacate the home for the duration of the visitor’s stay. While not all insurers will cover this additional “risk” under a general home insurance policy, we have come to an agreement with several providers to make hosting an “add-on” to a policy. The additional cost is by no means prohibitive. Here at Insuremyhouse.ie we have a number of policies that will cater for Airbnb use of an owner occupied property or even for full time Airbnb use, the most important thing is to disclose it to us so we can advise of the correct policy for your needs. Some additional benefits that can be included in an Airbnb policy include 24/7 Home Emergency Assistance, hosts should make the Home Emergency assistance number clearly visible in the property so that in the event of an emergency arising when the guest is on site the consequences may be limited and not develop into a bigger issue. We can also provide loss of income if a claim arising from an insured peril leads to the cancellation of an imminent confirmed Airbnb booking.
Deirdre McCarthy went on to say, “There are quite literally tens of thousands of people in Ireland currently making some extra cash by hosting visitors throughout the country. While it might be a great way to top up your income it’s important that you do it correctly – the associated tax obligations have been highlighted in the press in the past and we think home insurance obligations are just as important. People could really leave themselves financial exposed if they don’t meet them”.
Airbnb in Ireland – the stats
l Overall, 6,100 Airbnb hosts have welcomed 403,500 visitors to Dublin.
l A total of 12,000 hosts have rented rooms to more than 800,000 people across the Republic in 2016.
l The average age of a host is 39.
l In the case of an entire home listing, the entire property is rented out by a guest and the host is not present in the building for the length of the stay.
l The report also found that the vast majority of hosts (88%) shared their primary home.
l 14% of all hosts are retired and 43% are freelancers, self-employed or entrepreneurs. Almost half of Airbnb hosts earn under the median income for Ireland. Hosts in Ireland have more than doubled annually since 2010.
l The typical Airbnb host in Ireland earns € 2,600 per year, renting out space in their home for about 40 nights per year.
l There are now some 22,000 host properties listed for Ireland on the Airbnb Platform.
It is estimated from analysis carried out by third party companies on the Irish Airbnb operation that somewhere in the region of 45% of listings are for rooms in properties meaning some 9,900 properties are owner occupied.
Many of these property owners are unaware of the need to inform their Insurer of the fact that they are being used as Airbnb host properties.
For advice on your home insurance policy or for a home insurance quote do not hesitate to contact insuremyhouse.ie on 0818- 288 – 188 or 01 603 2999
City Financial Marketing Group Limited T/A insuremyhouse.ie is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland