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Brief guide to landlord and buy-to-let terminology

Landlord Terminology and Jargon

What is Landlord Insurance?
Landlord insurance is a general term for any kind of insurance that a landlord takes out on a rental property.

What is Landlord Rental Guarantee and Legal Expenses Insurance?
This is insurance that will continue to pay a landlord's rent if their tenants stop paying for any reason. Also, the insurance company will pay for and work with lawyers to evict the non-paying tenant as soon as possible.

What is a policy excess?
This is an amount agreed at the outset of an insurance policy that the policy holder will pay towards the agreed first part of any claim. This usually reduces the premium to the client.

What is Landlord Household Insurance?
Landlord Household Insurance is insurance specifically designed to cover landlords for their let properties. It is usually more expensive than owner-occupier insurance because the risk of claims is greater.

Landlords can choose to insure just the building fabric - the actual structure, walls, ceilings, roofs, floors etc or they can choose to cover their contents within the let premises. Alternatively they can choose to cover both buildings and contents combined.

What is Tenants' Contents Insurance?
Tenants' Contents Insurance is insurance designed to cover tenants' own possessions whilst in the property they are renting. It can also be used to cover them against accidental damage to the landlord's possessions that they have access to in the rental property.

What is Commercial Property Insurance?
This is insurance taken out by owners or agents to cover premises that are commercial in nature rather than residential. Examples can include offices, shops, factories, in fact all kinds of non-residential premises.

What is Block and Portfolio Insurance?
This can either mean the overall buildings insurance policy to cover a block of flats or a discounted policy offered to cover a number of properties all insured together. Managing agents, freeholders or tenants' companies usually insure the block under one of these policies.

What is Holiday Home Insurance?
This is insurance taken out to cover second homes or homes let on a short-term basis that the owner does not regularly occupy.

What is Stamp Duty?
The full term for this is Stamp Duty Land Tax and it is tax that buyers have to pay when they purchase most UK properties. It is banded so that the more expensive the property the higher the rate of Stamp Duty Land Tax. In 2016 it was increased by 35 to buy-to-let landlords.

What is tenant referencing?
Before a landlord lets a property to any tenant he or she should carefully reference the prospective tenant. This process checks that the tenant in fact earns what he or she claims to earn and that the person has no CCJs (County Court Judgements) against them and that they live where they say they do.

What is Property Owner's Liability Insurance
This is almost always included as part of any landlord insurance policy and it covers the landlord against any claims should the tenant be injured in the property and they claim that it was due to negligence by the landlord.

What is Employer's Liability Insurance?
This is also almost always included as part of a landlord insurance policy and covers claims agains the landlord by persons employed in the property, eg builders doing work who might have an accident that they claim was due to the landlord's negligence.

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