OPINION: Landlords should make property inspections a priority now eviction ban has lifted

With lockdown restrictions easing and the ban on evictions now ended, Hamilton Fraser Total Landlord Insurance is ©1999 - Present | Parkmatic Publications Ltd. All rights reserved | LandlordZONE® - OPINION: Landlords should make property inspections a priority now eviction ban has lifted | LandlordZONE.

OPINION: Landlords should make property inspections a priority now eviction ban has lifted

With lockdown restrictions easing and the ban on evictions now ended, Hamilton Fraser Total Landlord Insurance is warning landlords of the need to carry out property inspections to ensure the validity of their landlord insurance, should they need to make a claim when their tenants vacate.

Although rare, equating to just five percent of claims to Hamilton Fraser Total Landlord Insurance, the average malicious damage claim in 2019 was £5,555 and in 2020 was £3,668.

But if landlords have not carried out a thorough four-point referencing check (15% do not this or do so infrequently) and kept up with regular inspections, they could lose their right to indemnity.

With lockdown restrictions making access to rental properties more difficult over the last 18 months, many landlords have admitted to not carrying out inspections as regularly as they normally would.

Commenting on how this might impact landlords over the next few months, Steve Barnes (pitured), Associate Director at Hamilton Fraser Total Landlord Insurance says: “Although rare, when the relationship between landlord and tenant breaks down, particularly if the landlord has asked the tenant to vacate and they do not want to, deliberate damage to a property can be a form of revenge.

In addition, restricted access to properties has seen a rise in home-grown cannabis farms, another common malicious damage claim.

Challenging

“The pandemic has undoubtedly made inspections more challenging.  Whilst insurers will take this into account, landlords will still be expected to demonstrate that they attempted to access the property, providing detailed and dated records of this, or carried out the inspection virtually.

Now the ban on evictions has lifted, and landlords who have been desperately trying to gain possession of their properties start to make progress, we anticipate a rise in landlord insurance claims.”

Landlords are advised to make sure they have carried out a four-point referencing check which includes formal identification, utility bill or bank statement, credit check and employer’s reference. If an inspection has not been carried out within the last six months, this should be arranged as soon as possible. Read Hamilton Fraser Total Landlord Insurance’s comprehensive guide to tenant referencing for more information.

As a valued LandlordZONE reader you’re entitled to 20% off Hamilton Fraser Total Landlord Insurance’s policies, call the team today on 0800 63 43 880 quoting code LZ2021 or get a quote online in under 4 minutes.

©1999 - Present | Parkmatic Publications Ltd. All rights reserved | LandlordZONE® - OPINION: Landlords should make property inspections a priority now eviction ban has lifted | LandlordZONE.

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REVEALED: Airbnb’s attempts to keep crimes within its properties out of public eye

Airbnb has been running an in-house safety team that seeks to prevent media reports on trashed party ©1999 - Present | Parkmatic Publications Ltd. All rights reserved | LandlordZONE® - REVEALED: Airbnb’s attempts to keep crimes within its properties out of public eye | LandlordZONE.

REVEALED: Airbnb’s attempts to keep crimes within its properties out of public eye

Airbnb has been running an in-house safety team that seeks to prevent media reports on trashed party houses and criminality including rapes inside its properties, it has been reported.

The report in reveals the problems caused by Airbnb’s free hand in the market; the company has been giving staff blank checks to help victims of crime within Airbnb properties and spent an estimated $50 million every year on pay-outs to hosts and guests when things go wrong.

The website highlights the unregulated nature of Airbnb in contrast to the increasingly close regulation of other kinds of rented property in the UK – a fact Airbnb is attempting to address in its new

Released earlier this month, it calls for a national register for anyone wanting to list their homes on a short-term letting platform or through conventional methods, to help root out bad hosts.

Black box

The secret team – known as the ‘black box’ inside the firm – is made up of about 100 agents across cities across the world who, the company says, are trained to offer ‘comfort and assistance to victims’.

Team members have the power to spend any amount tackling the worst crises at their rentals including party damage, sexual assaults, murders and deaths.

Some have had to arrange for contractors to cover bullet holes in the walls of properties or hire body-fluid crews to clean blood off the floors, the report says.

In extreme cases, they had to deal with hosts who discover dismembered human remains inside their homes.

In one incident, a rape victim received a $7 million pay-out in exchange for agreeing not to imply responsibility or liability on Airbnb after an attack in 2016 at an apartment in New York.

The suspect, 24-year-old Junior Lee, was allegedly already inside the apartment hiding in the bathroom when she returned. It is not clear how he had keys to the property but, under Airbnb rules, hosts aren’t required to disclose to guests who has a copy of the key or change codes on keypad locks in between guests. 

©1999 - Present | Parkmatic Publications Ltd. All rights reserved | LandlordZONE® - REVEALED: Airbnb’s attempts to keep crimes within its properties out of public eye | LandlordZONE.

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