Posted by Justin on June 22, 2006 at 13:21:47:
Your agent should have told you about this, and probably should have inspected the premises him/herself. I am a licensed insurance agent in Alabama and “wes” brings up a good point. Every insurance company, state, and local government will have their own rules regarding things like this. In most cases though if a loss was caused by an uncovered activity (grilling for example) the insurance company would simply not pay the claim. I’ve not heard of a company denying coverage to anyone because of this, but then again I’m only licensed in AL.
Something else you should consider is requiring tenants carry renter’s insurance. It’s inexpensive (avg. $40/mo for $35k contents $100K liability) and with bigger companies like mine it can give them a discout on their auto insurance as well. The benefit to the LL is that your insurance company may even give you a credit on your policy for requiring renter’s insurance, and if the tenant causes a loss such as fire through negligence their insurance pays the claim, not yours. Talk with your agent about this to be sure you understand what will and will not be covered and how subrogation works. Also be sure to check that it is legal to require tenants have insurance. Again, every state is different so do your homework.