Best Short Term Rental Insurance

How to protect your home when renting

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If you rent your vacation home or residence to others for short stays, whether directly or through a platform like Airbnb, you’ll want to have short term rental insurance. In 2017, 33.9 million people used Airbnb in the U.S. alone. That accounts for just a fraction of short term rentals. With that many guests bunking in beds and cooking in kitchens unfamiliar to them, hosts need to have protection for the unexpected grease fire, plumbing disasters, stolen property, and accidental guest injury.

We researched 16 short term rental insurance companies to help you decide which carrier is right for you based on price and coverage options, customer service, reputation, and much more. Take a look at our best-in-class in eight categories and see which one makes the most sense for you.

Best Overall : Proper Insurance


Proper Insurance

 Proper Insurance

It’s hard to beat Proper Insurance as the best overall short term rental insurance company. Proper offers the most comprehensive and specific coverage for vacation rentals at affordable rates in all 50 states.

Pros
  • Lost rental income insured

  • Founded by an experienced rental insurance team

  • No occupancy restrictions

  • Exclusively endorsed by HomeAway and Vrbo

  • Premises coverage extends beyond the home

Cons
  • Price increases if the host lives on the property

  • Liability insurance bundled with commercial insurance

  • Not on-demand coverage

Proper Insurance, a Virginia-based property and casualty insurance company, offers an all-inclusive Lloyd’s of London insurance policy focused on short term vacation rental properties’ unique risks. The insurance policy protects both the owner’s and property manager's exposure. It was created in response to the growing popularity of short term rentals through services like Airbnb and the lack of policies explicitly designed for this sort of use. Proper’s comprehensive policy designed specifically for the short term rental market is why we named it our best overall.

With an A (Excellent) financial strength rating from AM Best, they sell their policies directly through the company website or over the phone in all 50 states.

Proper Insurance has a dependable reputation. Reviews across Google, Facebook, Yelp, and the Better Business Bureau average 4.4 out of five stars.

Proper does offer online quoting through its website. Its specialized team can assess the host's specific needs and give a quote in five minutes. Proper Insurance offers service during regular business hours through independent agents, and a 24/7 claims phone number to make a claim.

Proper asks specific questions related to vacation rentals or hosting through Vrbo, Airbnb, or HomeAway, indicating that their product is designed to cover peer-to-peer and vacation rentals.

The average cost of their short term rental policies ranges from $1,500 to $3,500. Your premium will vary based on how much income you want to replace if you were to lose annual rents and how much personal property you want insured.

A few notable protections that Proper writes into their policies include sinkhole collapse coverage, no time limit on loss of rental income, and ordinance coverage of $10,000 to $50,000.

Best for Home Sharing : Allstate


Allstate

 Allstate

If you plan to share your home with short term renters, check out our favorite, Allstate. We like Allstate’s Host Advantage as an affordable way to add coverage for short-term rentals to existing homeowner policies and its powerhouse mobile app.

Pros
  • Large network of agents

  • Policy bundling and other discounts

  • It's easy to file claims

Cons
  • High rates compared with other insurers

  • Insurance only sold in six-month terms

  • Customer satisfaction ratings are average compared with other companies

If you’re already a fan of getting things done online or on your mobile device, like with your Airbnb or Vrbo account, you’ll love Allstate’s mobile and online experience. With Host Advantage, you can easily and affordably add short term rental coverage to your existing Allstate policy, making it our top choice for home sharing insurance.

Founded in 1931, Allstate Insurance currently backs more than 113 million proprietary policies worldwide. While having some serious online muscle, Allstate also uses local agents that work directly with customers for a more personal insurance experience. The carrier has been awarded an A+ rating with AM Best and an AA- from S&P Global.

Allstate landlord policies include coverage for dwellings, other structures on the property, vandalism, burglary, fair rental income, building codes, and liability. Hosts can also get premises medical protection that can help cover medical bills if someone is injured on their property. For even more protection against financial loss, you can add flood insurance and umbrella coverage.

You can apply for a quote online or speak to a live agent if you prefer. They have 24/7 phone support, with coverage in all 50 states.

A short term rental endorsement is around $50 for limited coverage up to $10,000 for personal belongings. It can be as low as $4 per month if you add it to your Allstate auto policy. Policy costs will vary depending on the location, size, age of the home, and how much guest medical or family liability coverage you want.

Best for Vacation Homes : CBIZ


CBIZ

 CBIZ

With CBIZ, homeowners can use a single policy as a standard home insurance policy, and a rental insurance policy for guests, without having to separate them. Check into CBIZ for the best insurance plan for vacation home rentals.

Pros
  • Less expensive than landlord or commercial property insurance

  • Available in all 50 states

  • Good marks for customer satisfaction

Cons
  • Coverage options are limited

  • Will only cover up to $5,000 in medical expenses due to a guest injury at your property

By creating a full-coverage policy that covers vacation homes while replacing your need for a landlord or dwelling policy, we believe CBIZ has the best short term rental insurance for vacation homes. Their underwriters are Tudor Insurance, an AM Best A-rated company.

CBIZ is the first broker to develop specific policy coverage to meet the needs of vacation rental properties and the amenities offered by these businesses. They have insured vacation rental properties since 2002.

As the largest insurer of vacation rental properties in the U.S., CBIZ provides insurance coverage specifically created for short term vacation and rental property owners and the exposures involved.

Their coverage includes replacement costs for your buildings and contents, damage caused by a guest, loss of use, and extra expense coverage when owner-occupied. Loss of rental income following an insured property loss is accounted for, too. CBIZ also has extensive liability coverage that covers pools, docks, lakes, hot tubs, bicycles, exercise equipment, small watercraft, and pets—amenities that other carriers shy away from.

With CBIZ, you can apply online or talk to a live agent, and customer service representative to help with any insurance concerns by phone.

There are no standard occupancy restrictions, and it is available in all 50 states. For commercial and personal liability up to $2 million, the estimated rate would be roughly $1,600 annually.

Best for Coverage Options : Nationwide


Nationwide

Nationwide

For the broadest range of insurance product options for your short term rental, check Nationwide. You can even choose coverage beyond the home to include stolen items from your watercraft or vehicle that you may have at your rental property, making it the best for coverage options.

Pros
  • Extra coverage for valuables available

  • Annual On Your Side® insurance review

  • Bundling discounts available

  • Available nationwide

Cons
  • Mediocre customer satisfaction reviews

  • Customers can only talk to a sales or customer service representative during certain hours

  • Expensive premiums are higher than the national average

With an AM Best Rating of A+, Nationwide insurance offers various types of short term insurance such as homeowners policies, condo/association insurance policies, personal liability, and umbrella insurance, earning our highest grade for coverage options.

Founded in 1926, Nationwide, formerly known as Farm Bureau Mutual Automobile Insurance Company, has grown from a small mutual auto insurer owned by policyholders to one of the largest insurance and financial services companies in the world.

Get an online quote or work with licensed agents by phone in all 50 states for quotes and account service.

Because Nationwide offers so many policy options, the costs can vary more widely than with other firms, starting under $1,000 and climbing above the usual ceiling of $3,000 per year. Their short term rental insurance cost will depend on the deductible you choose, the replacement value of the home, the location, amenities, and amount of coverage selected.

Nationwide will recommend you select additional coverage for flood or earthquake risk, depending on your rental property’s location.

Best for Landlords : Farmers


Farmers

 Farmers

For landlords’ short term rental insurance needs, you won’t find a better choice than Farmers. Its prepackaged landlord insurance policy includes liability insurance and comprehensive property coverage, with optional coverage additions for lost rents, personal property, personal injury, and other structures like sheds, garages, and pools.

Pros
  • Policies available in all states

  • Discounts available for teachers, doctors, and some other professions

  • Bundling discounts available

  • Claim forgiveness prevents a rate increase for longtime customers after their first claim

  • Fewer complaints than expected, relative to its size

  • Deductibles decrease over time if no claims are made

Cons
  • Some coverages are only available as part of a package

  • The online quote tool offers several coverage options but doesn't necessarily explain what those coverages are or what the limits are for filing a claim

Farmers’ landlord insurance understands the risks to the short term guests, to the home itself, and to your business, making it our favorite insurance carrier for landlords. You can tailor your custom package to handle storm damage, a burst pipe, a guest’s injury, and the rents you lose while recovering from any of these setbacks.

Farmers Insurance started in 1928 when California partners John C. Tyler and Thomas E. Leavey thought that farmers might be a lower insurance risk than some other clients. Based in Los Angeles, the Farmers Insurance Group now comprises about 46 separate companies, 21,000 employees, and about 48,000 exclusive and independent agents. Farmers writes insurance policies for homes, vehicles, and businesses in all 50 states. It has an A rating for financial stability from AM Best.

Farmers sells its insurance through a network of agents. Homeowners can find one through its website or by calling the company. Quotes are available online after providing some basic information, and homeowners can forward a copy of their quote to a local agent for the in-person experience. Prices are in the typical range of its competitors, between $1,000 and $3,000.

Policyholders can download the Farmers mobile app to access ID cards, pay bills, view policy documents, set up payment reminders, or report a claim.

While Farmers does provide bundling discounts, it doesn’t require you to insure your primary residence with them in order to get vacation or rental property insurance like some insurers do.

Best for Occasional Lessors : Progressive


Progressive

 Progressive

Progressive does something really innovative for occasional lessors. It offers short term rental coverage that you can turn on and off as needed. For example, you may own just your primary residence and you rent it out through Airbnb whenever you have a planned vacation or business trip. With Progressive, you don’t need to carry that policy during the months you don’t rent your home. If you rent your home only occasionally, you’ll want to talk to our top choice for occasional lessors, Progressive.

Pros
  • Pay for coverage only when you are renting your property

  • Can bundle your policy with other Progressive insurance products

  • File a claim online, same-day resolution potential

  • Offers a mobile app

Cons
  • Need to enter personal information such as your birthdate and Social Security number to receive a quote

  • Can only make monthly payments if you enroll in automatic withdrawals

Progressive began in 1937 when it launched as Progressive Mutual Insurance Company to provide affordable auto insurance. Today it has evolved into our top selection for short term rental insurance for occasional lessors because of its dynamic ability to only charge you for the days you actually rent out your home.

Progressive has an A+ (Superior) rating from AM Best, the credit agency focused on the insurance industry.

Progressive calls its short term rental insurance Progressive Homeshare insurance by Slice. It protects your home, personal property and valuables, and your rental business. If you rent your property on a more frequent basis, Progressive has landlord insurance options as well.

Quotes are available online, but you can also speak to an agent. Progressive offers a robust customer claims center to help homeowners through the claims process.

Progressive writes insurance policies in all 50 states. Their Homeshare insurance often costs less than $8 per night and varies by location, coverage amounts, and any potential bundling discounts.

Progressive’s Homeshare insurance covers belongings, liability, and medical payments, plus interesting policy inclusions like excess use of utilities, liquor liability, and identity theft.

Best for Customer Service : American Modern


American Modern

 American Modern

American Modern is a large insurer with remarkably few complaints. According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), the company had zero consumer complaints in 2017 and 2018 and only one in 2019. For convenience, you can make a payment, file a claim, and change your policy all online. But if you prefer speaking to a live person, you can do that, too. American Modern is your best choice if you want hassle-free customer service.

Pros
  • Will provide rental property insurance if you don’t have a primary residence policy with them

  • Specialty insurer for rented dwellings issuing policies for national insurers

  • Will cover older homes

  • Bundling discounts

Cons
  • Does not cover furnishings or additional structures in their standard plans

  • No online quote process

For a top-notch customer service experience designed for your convenience, American Modern is your best option. From designing a policy that fits your situation best to making payments or filing claims during the policy’s life, no one has a more convenient online and telephone service system in place.

Founded in 1938, American Modern issues policies in all 50 states from its headquarters in Cincinnati, Ohio, with an AM Best financial strength rating of A+ (Superior). With only one complaint registered by the NAIC from 2017 to 2019, the company provides short term rental insurance and occasional rental policies. Their short term rental policy can be modified to allow rental terms shorter than three months. This option would be best-suited for Airbnb-style rentals. If you rent your property out seasonally as a vacation home, you’d choose their occasional rental option to cover infrequent rentals with no defined term.

The only strike against American Modern regarding customer service and convenience is that they do not have an online quote function. Instead, with just a few clicks of your mouse, you can find a list of agents for your area. From there, you can view and compare their profiles before you choose one to call or email.

The average cost of their policies is $2,000 per year, but this can vary based on your state, coverage, and deductible choices for liability, loss, damage, and medical risk.

Unlike other insurers, American Modern does not require you to have a primary home policy with them in order to provide you short term rental coverage.

Furnishings and additional structures like garages and swimming pools are not included in standard coverage but may be added in some cases if you speak to your agent about your needs while designing your policy.

Best Affordable Option : American Family


American Family

 American Family

Short term rental insurance prices average $2,000, but if you rent your home for less than 62 days per year, American Family has the most affordable option for you, because it lets you add a temporary rental to other coverage and a landlord’s endorsement to keep your costs down.

Pros
  • Add temporary rental coverage to existing policy

  • Bundling discounts

  • Loyalty discount

  • Generational discount if either of your parents is an American Family customer

  • Discounts for safety features and smart home devices

Cons
  • If you rent your property for more than 62 days per year, you may find better cost options elsewhere

  • Not available in all states

Insurance coverage costs can add up when you select layers of options to reduce your risk, but with American Family, their creativity will give you the most affordable option for the right situation. If you rent your home for fewer than 62 days per year, you can keep your costs down and pay for what you use by simply adding temporary rental coverage and a landlord’s endorsement to your existing policy.

This program is best for homeowners that already have a homeowner’s insurance policy on a vacation home that they rent out for roughly eight weeks per year, as a seasonal rental, for example. It can also work well for you if you rent out your home on platforms like Airbnb and Vrbo, but the frequency adds up to less than two months of actual rental dates.

American Family’s online quoting tool is easy to use. The form asks thoughtful questions to understand your total picture and determine your insurance needs accurately. You can also find a local agent on the website if you prefer talking to someone.

The company only writes homeowners insurance policies in 19 states. You can keep your short term rental insurance costs lower with American Family if you have a homeowner’s insurance policy with them. Consequently, you’ll only need to add the additional short term coverage and landlord endorsement, thereby paying for two months of short term rental insurance, or less, keeping your pricing in the $15 to $30 range over the 62 days of use. Other ways to keep your costs down are by taking advantage of the many discounts they offer for bundling, loyalty, safety features, and smart home devices.

American Family has some inclusions that other firms do not typically cover, such as siding damage, equipment breakdown protection for your more expensive appliances and smart home devices, and identity theft coverage.

FAQs

What Is Short Term Rental Insurance?

If you rent your home to guests for occasional, seasonal, or short terms of a few days to a week at a time, you’re a prime candidate for short term rental insurance. In fact, if you don’t have this specific type of coverage, you are exposing yourself to a number of risks.

Short term rental coverage is not for landlords who rent their properties to tenants with leases.

Short term rental policies reduce your liability for things like damage caused to your property while a guest is renting it for a few days, physical property such as jewelry or artwork stolen by a guest, and even digital theft by a guest who steals your identity and gains access to your accounts. The other key component to short term rental insurance is that it protects you against the income you would lose if your property is not rentable, such as if it is under repair.

Who Should Get Short Term Rental Insurance?

If you rent your home for short stays on Airbnb, Vrbo, or other platforms, short term rental insurance is made for you. But it’s not about the platform. You may rent your cabin on the lake for eight summer weeks through referrals or newspaper ads. That fits, too.  

Short term rental insurance gives you the additional coverage you need over and above your homeowner’s and dwelling policies to handle the new risks that hosting short term guests brings to your life.

If you are a landlord with permanent tenants, short term rental policies are not for you. You’ll need landlord insurance.

Fortunately, there is a growing list of options for the many conditions you need protection from when it comes to renting your property to short-stay guests.

Do Homeowners or Landlords Insurance Cover Short Term Rentals?

Short term rental coverage fills in the gaps between a homeowner’s policy and a landlord policy.

A good short term rental policy will cover the loss of your income if your property cannot be rented due to damages, and the resulting repairs needed to make it occupancy-ready.

You’ll want to talk to your agent to see if you need dwelling coverage. Dwelling coverage is standard with homeowner’s insurance and landlord policies. It is often not covered for short term rentals. How you personally use the property that you rent out to short term guests will determine whether you’ll want this additional coverage. 

How We Chose the Best Short Term Rental Insurance

We dug through the details on 16 short term rental insurance carriers to find the best for these eight categories. We made sure they had solid ratings from AM Best and comparatively few consumer complaints registered with the NAIC to get a handle on their reputation in the market.

We also wanted to see if they had options to customize their short term rental coverage, or if it was served to you in a one-size-fits-all package. We preferred options and customizations to better fit different circumstances.

Online quoting and account management with the option to talk to a live agent always won out over just one or the other. People like to interact with their insurance company in different ways, and we recognized the carriers that understand that.

All of our winners except one write policies in all 50 states, and price ranges were competitive. A few companies stood out on price thanks to their ability to craft policies that charge you only for the days you actually have the property rented.

Lastly, we called out notable exclusions and inclusions in case those particular items were applicable to your situation.

Article Sources

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  1. Statista. “Number of Airbnb users in the United States from 2016 to 2022.” Accessed November 5, 2020.