California is a great place to live. With warm weather and beautiful ocean, the Golden State holds a special place in the hearts of visitors and residents alike. From colorful, eccentric San Francisco to the densely forested north coast and the star-studded cities in southern California, there's something for everyone in CA.
While the state is a wonderful place to call home, property and house prices are exorbitant, leading many residents to opt to rent. California has a very low vacancy rate, meaning that it's a great place to be a landlord. However, a landlord's life is tough. From keeping the grounds tidy to general maintenance, being a landlord is much more than just a 9-5 job. With so much to consider, it's no wonder that some landlords neglect to carry insurance. This oversight, however, may end up costing them large sums of money in repairs or judgments. Having a landlord insurance policy can help avoid a wide range of expenses resulting from unforeseen losses.
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Being a Landlord in California: A Snapshot
- The average rent price in California is $1,258 per month.
- 45.97 percent of homes in California are rentals.
- On average, 24.69 percent of income goes to paying rent.
- 4.51 percent of rentals are vacant in California.
With such high home prices, many residents choose to rent. In fact, the percentage of renters in California is higher than any other state in the nation, and in 2012 the percentage of rentals was the highest in history.
What Is Landlord Insurance?
Landlord insurance is a set of policies offered together in order to give landlords protection against the most common incidents that impact rental property and its owner. A typical landlord insurance policy in CA may include the following:
- Coverage for personal property: This can help cover any property belonging to the landlord that is in the rental. This may include fixtures, tools and appliances. If the property is damaged while inside the rental unit, this coverage can help cover the expenses to repair or replace the damaged item.
- Coverage for liability expenses: This may be the most vital coverage type. Liability coverage will help pay costs for your legal defense, damages, or judgments in case of a lawsuit. For example, if you've been notified about a water leak but neglect to repair it, and the leak eventually damages your tenant's personal library, you can be held liable for those damages. This insurance will help cover the fees associated with that liability.
Other coverages are available. An insurance agent can get you details on the coverages that will work best for your individual situation.
What Will My Landlord Insurance Policy Quote Look Like in California?
A landlord insurance policy quote is typically affordable, but there is no exact average. When you decide to start shopping for landlord insurance, make sure to be ready to answer questions about the following:
- Number of rentals
- Location of rentals
- Size of rentals
- Value of rentals
- Whether rentals have security/fire systems
- Whether electrical/plumbing in rentals is up to code
- If rentals will be rented to smokers or pet owners
- If there is a pool/fitness center included in the rental
- Desired coverages
- Desired deductibles
- History of claims
These questions, plus many more, will need to be answered before giving you a quote in order to make sure the policy you're getting is as accurate as possible.
What About Renters Insurance?
Landlord insurance typically covers what's known as "everything to the studs." This means that everything structural, up to the inside walls, is covered. Landlord insurance does not cover the tenant's personal belongings or liability. Tenants are not required to have this insurance, but it's a wise idea when screening tenants to ask if they will have renters insurance during the term of the rental agreement.
Are Discounts Available on Landlord Insurance in CA?
Just like many other insurance policies, a number of discounts are available on landlord insurance. While shopping for quotes, be sure to ask about the following:
- Multi-policy discount
- New customer discount
- Loyal customer discount
- Paid-in-full discount
- Professional/industrial affiliation discount
Each insurance company offers different discounts, so be sure to ask about any discounts you may not be aware of before purchasing.
Purchasing Landlord Insurance Is Simple
Landlord insurance is crucial to keeping your assets protected. A Trusted Choice® agent is always available to answer questions, suggest coverages and policy modifications, or even help you file a claim. TrustedChoice.com independent agents are committed to getting you the best coverage at the right price.