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Coma
Thanks Steve
Premium
join:2001-12-30
NirvanaLand

1 recommendation

reply to Jack_in_VA

Re: Should we let the tenant move back in after the fire?

said by Jack_in_VA:

It's amazing how much legal advice is on a home improvement forum from people with no training or a license to practice law .


Ain't that the truth.



--
December is National Fruit Cake Month

microphone
Premium
join:2009-04-29
Parkville, MD

1 edit
reply to Jack_in_VA
I have a separate line item that specifically mentions liability. There is a minimum amount of coverage required by the landlord. The landlord does also have their own building coverage.

My best guess for my policy would be:
->Tenant leaves deep fryer on and damages kitchen cabinets ... tenant policy pays for damages
->Lightning hits building ... Landlord policy pays for building damage. Tenant policy pays for personal property


Coma
Thanks Steve
Premium
join:2001-12-30
NirvanaLand

The fact is, you can write a contract to do what ever you want.

--
December is National Fruit Cake Month


PSWired

join:2006-03-26
Annapolis, MD
reply to microphone
By my understanding, the liability portion of MD renter's insurance covers other peoples' possessions that are damaged in the unit you're renting, or bodily injury that occurs to nonfamily members occupying the unit. The normal slips/falls/etc that a homeowner's policy would cover, except applied to a rental.

tcope
Premium
join:2003-05-07
Sandy, UT
kudos:2

1 recommendation

reply to Jack_in_VA
said by Jack_in_VA:

It's amazing how much legal advice is on a home improvement forum from people with no training or a license to practice law .

I've been adjusting claims for about 25 years now. Have handled hundreds (if not in the thousands) of claims in suit (probably have 30 in suit right now), attended hundreds of settlement conferences, meditations and trials on insurance claims.

A renters policy covers the _renter_... not the building owner. It provides the renter personal property coverage and liability coverage. Even though liability payments go to 3rd parties, it actually protects (covers) the renter. The renter does not get a policy on a certain property or location... it insures the renters property where ever it's located and also provides liability coverage on the renter where ever that renter may be (usually limited to US locations).

I think where you are going down the wrong path is that the renters policy _does not_ insure the dwelling, as you mentioned. That is, it's not listed on the policy as an insured location with coverage (such as a home owners policy would). The renters policy provides the renter _liability_ coverage for when they are legally liable for _property damage_. If the home the renter rents just catches on fire and burns to the ground, the renters policy only provides the renter a defense as they are not legally liable. But if the renter _caused_ the home to burn down, the policy provides a defense in the form of a payment to the home owner.

I've provided a quote from a website explaining what coverage a renters policy provides. Feel free to search yourself to confirm this information.


bobjohnson
Premium
join:2007-02-03
Orlando, FL
Reviews:
·AT&T U-Verse
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reply to Frank
said by Frank:

said by jjoshua:

said by tcope:

I'm guessing you don't have, as part of the rental contract, that the tenant have renters insurance. I'd _certainly_ add that in your lease upon next renewal. I'd also require that you be listed as an Additional Interest on the policy. That way you should be informed if the policy is no longer active (you may also want to contact the insurance company every few months and confirm it's still active). Also put in the lease that lacking a renters insurance policy that you have the right to give the tenant xx days notice and can evict for this reason (check to see what the law will allow in your area).

Renter's insurance only covers the tenant's personal property and personal liability. I doubt that you can force a tenant to have a policy unless you're the government and we're talking about health insurance.

Yes a tenant can be forced to have a renter's insurance policy. The last two leases i've signed (where the landlord was a corporation that owns many many properties) have had proof of renter's insurance listed as a requirement prior to being able to reside in the property. I'm pretty sure that's there for the benefit of the landlord in case something goes wrong (ie: fire) otherwise it wouldn't be a requirement.

Nationwide requires me to have my tenants carry renters insurance to be able to have better coverage. It is a part of the lease that a lawyer wrote up for me. In the op's situation I would do what I could to terminate the lease and not allow them back in.
--


tcope
Premium
join:2003-05-07
Sandy, UT
kudos:2
reply to Coma
said by Coma:


The fact is, you can write a contract to do what ever you want.

To a certain extent... but only if you are a surplus lines carrier. If you are not, your policy is regulated and needs to be approved by the state its written in. But even then, a renters policy is going to provide liability coverage. If it did not, it would not be a "renters policy".

I'm hoping my prior post explains where I think the confusion lies.

In the case of the OP, if I were his property carrier I'd certainly go after the renter for payment. But as mentioned in a prior post, I'd certainly like to see what knew about the heater. Still, there is going to be a very good argument that she either knew it was a heater or should have known. That is why a renter should have liability insurance... to offer them a defense in these matters. As the OP, I'd at least ask the renter to pay the deductible (if the OP's carrier was not going to seek recovery from the renter). I'd also add some wording into the lease that the renter needed to maintain an insurance policy. This not only goes toward protecting the dwelling but also protecting the OP against liability. If the renter has someone over and that someone "slips" (or is insured) they would probably attempt to hold the home owner liable. I won't get into this but it happens _all of the time_.... even when it's the renters negligence. The OP should be listed as an Additional Insured and perhaps even an Additional Interest (if possible) on the renters policy.


Kramer
Premium,Mod
join:2000-08-03
Richmond, VA
kudos:2
reply to walta
Never mind. You don't have code upgrade.


hortnut
Huh?

join:2005-09-25
PNW
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Comcast

1 recommendation

reply to Jack_in_VA

said by Jack_in_VA See Profile
It's amazing how much legal advice is on a home improvement forum from people with no training or a license to practice law .
.

:

I agree. Especially since these forum/s bring folks from all 50 states, Canada and other Countries. Each State and Country has its own Rules and Laws. Without seeing the Policy and its endorsements, one cannot make any specific statements as to what is covered and what is not. I have yet to see in this thread or any other thread, a posting of any Policy and its endorsements in question.

Take the United States, there are many different levels of coverage available for Homeowners Coverage and the same is for Renters.

General Liability, in my opinion, is one of the most confusing and least understood Insurance Coverages Provided. It covers dog bites, slip and falls, accidents/events that take place off of the premises that the Insured maybe responsible for and a host of other events/situations.

Let your imagination run wild and most likely there is some sort of coverage or a duty to defend in the event of a Claim/Lawsuit. Shoot someone in the woods by accident while hunting with a Renter's Policy [or Homeowner's] - most likely covered. Your kid put the eye out of a neighbor's kid with his bow and arrow - most likely covered. Lose control of your shopping cart and plow into a car - covered. Your negligence causes damage to property of others or personal injury, whether on premises of off, is covered To give a few examples.

One does not need to be an Attorney to Adjust a Claim for an Insurance Company and many Adjusters know the Laws/Rules better than any General Practicing Attorney and many times one who specializes. They do it everyday of the week. I have had many of my Claims go to Suit, we would assign it to Defense Counsel, yet I would still handle it, with the goal of settling said Claim. If Companies had to use Attorney's, Premiums would probably double.

And then there are Laws and Rules governing Insurance Companies and Adjusters and those vary State to State. There are Company Adjusters and Licensed Independent Adjusters, not to mention Public Adjusters. And then some variations of those.

I have been both a Company and Licensed Independent Adjuster, but the area I worked in was the Pacific Northwest. And it has been a while, so I am unable to speak specifically as to current Policies or Laws that can affect the outcome of a Claim in my area or others. Only in general. Worked many years in those positions, until my own Business could pay my wages.

I also was appointed to Intercompany Claims Arbitration and saw the Work Product of other Companies and their Adjusters. Did that for 5 years in addition to my other work.

Sorry to say, have seen a great deal of misinformation in this thread about Insurance, and felt the need to clear the air. Hope this is helpful.



Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom
reply to tcope
said by tcope:

said by Jack_in_VA:

It's amazing how much legal advice is on a home improvement forum from people with no training or a license to practice law .

I've been adjusting claims for about 25 years now. Have handled hundreds (if not in the thousands) of claims in suit (probably have 30 in suit right now), attended hundreds of settlement conferences, meditations and trials on insurance claims.

A renters policy covers the _renter_... not the building owner. It provides the renter personal property coverage and liability coverage. Even though liability payments go to 3rd parties, it actually protects (covers) the renter. The renter does not get a policy on a certain property or location... it insures the renters property where ever it's located and also provides liability coverage on the renter where ever that renter may be (usually limited to US locations).

I think where you are going down the wrong path is that the renters policy _does not_ insure the dwelling, as you mentioned. That is, it's not listed on the policy as an insured location with coverage (such as a home owners policy would). The renters policy provides the renter _liability_ coverage for when they are legally liable for _property damage_. If the home the renter rents just catches on fire and burns to the ground, the renters policy only provides the renter a defense as they are not legally liable. But if the renter _caused_ the home to burn down, the policy provides a defense in the form of a payment to the home owner.

I've provided a quote from a website explaining what coverage a renters policy provides. Feel free to search yourself to confirm this information.

I assume your experience in Utah as applicable to all the other states and to top it off you accuse me of going down the wrong path? I stated and stand by the renters policy I purchased for my dad specifically excluded any damage to the dwelling in writing. How much plainer can I make it? Has it ever occurred you that Utah may have completely different insurance regulations than other states? My X wife was a broker for about 50 insurance companies and spent many hours studying for the tests needed to get all the necessary licenses, so I'm not a complete idiot.

Bottom line is you still are not a legal expert and are not licensed to practice law which you are trying to do now. An insurance adjuster is in no way a legal source for information. All the information you post is just your opinion as you understand it and you should state that.

Right now I have my lawyers working on some issues for me. I sure as heck wont depend on a bunch of keyboard lawyers on a home improvement forum.

But all this is off topic so how about we get back to the fact the OP needs to get actual legal advice on allowing his renter back when repairs are made. We can speculate forever and accomplish nothing.

garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI
Reviews:
·Callcentric
·callwithus
The liability clause of the renter's insurance is what the landlord would rely upon in a case like this. The LL files a claim, his insurance company files a suit with the tenant's insurance company and they work it out as to who pays how much of the repair bill (beyond any deductible, of course, that the LL pays out of pocket).


Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom
reply to hortnut
said by hortnut:

said by Jack_in_VA See Profile
It's amazing how much legal advice is on a home improvement forum from people with no training or a license to practice law .
.

:

I agree. Especially since these forum/s bring folks from all 50 states, Canada and other Countries. Each State and Country has its own Rules and Laws. Without seeing the Policy and its endorsements, one cannot make any specific statements as to what is covered and what is not. I have yet to see in this thread or any other thread, a posting of any Policy and its endorsements in question.

Take the United States, there are many different levels of coverage available for Homeowners Coverage and the same is for Renters.

General Liability, in my opinion, is one of the most confusing and least understood Insurance Coverages Provided. It covers dog bites, slip and falls, accidents/events that take place off of the premises that the Insured maybe responsible for and a host of other events/situations.

Let your imagination run wild and most likely there is some sort of coverage or a duty to defend in the event of a Claim/Lawsuit. Shoot someone in the woods by accident while hunting with a Renter's Policy [or Homeowner's] - most likely covered. Your kid put the eye out of a neighbor's kid with his bow and arrow - most likely covered. Lose control of your shopping cart and plow into a car - covered. Your negligence causes damage to property of others or personal injury, whether on premises of off, is covered To give a few examples.

One does not need to be an Attorney to Adjust a Claim for an Insurance Company and many Adjusters know the Laws/Rules better than any General Practicing Attorney and many times one who specializes. They do it everyday of the week. I have had many of my Claims go to Suit, we would assign it to Defense Counsel, yet I would still handle it, with the goal of settling said Claim. If Companies had to use Attorney's, Premiums would probably double.

And then there are Laws and Rules governing Insurance Companies and Adjusters and those vary State to State. There are Company Adjusters and Licensed Independent Adjusters, not to mention Public Adjusters. And then some variations of those.

I have been both a Company and Licensed Independent Adjuster, but the area I worked in was the Pacific Northwest. And it has been a while, so I am unable to speak specifically as to current Policies or Laws that can affect the outcome of a Claim in my area or others. Only in general. Worked many years in those positions, until my own Business could pay my wages.

I also was appointed to Intercompany Claims Arbitration and saw the Work Product of other Companies and their Adjusters. Did that for 5 years in addition to my other work.

Sorry to say, have seen a great deal of misinformation in this thread about Insurance, and felt the need to clear the air. Hope this is helpful.

+1 A very good informative post. Thank you for taking the time to clear up some misconceptions on adjusters and differences in location, companies and policy language.

walta

join:2001-05-22
Saint Louis, MO
kudos:2
reply to Jack_in_VA
My uncle recently passed away leaving my aunt to handle several properties.

I point out the tenet caused the fire and should be held responsible. My aunt looked at me like I had 3 heads.

I don’t think there any point in trying to recover money from someone struggles to pay their 500.00 a month rent.

I seems her tenet has found another place to rent I think that part is over.

Thanks Jack-in-VA. I had not even considered that floor furnaces are still available if only for insurance estimate.

There is no mortgage is the insurance going to cut a check based on the estimate.

Will there be a problem if we then install a gas furnace in the attic?

It is hard to be much help from 250 miles.

Walta


hortnut
Huh?

join:2005-09-25
PNW
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Comcast
said by walta:


There is no mortgage is the insurance going to cut a check based on the estimate.

Walta

.

Have you read the Policy and its endorsements? No one here can accurately answer that question without the ability to do that. There are different Policies that cover Landlords and their Rentals. And each State has different rules as to what is offered and what they wish to be covered at a bare minimum.

Even who the Company is can determine how they will handle the Claim. When I started in the late 70's, one Company I was with was very tight. Move ahead a couple of years and a different Employer. They were extremely generous and had different Claims handling philosophies. Made my job that much more easy.

Also may want to get more than one estimate, which I highly recommend.

Good luck taking care of this for your Aunt.


KrK
Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Premium
join:2000-01-17
Tulsa, OK
reply to walta
Sure, let her move back in.

Triple the deposit and double the rent.

robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1
That would not have covered the damages if it had been the terms of the original lease. Why would it be a good idea now?


Joe1

@comcast.net
reply to walta
Well, in many places, just having the home recovering from fire damage like that would take the choice out of the 2 party's hands. You can't rent a unit that is illegal to rent(which it is here), regardless of any agreements. Stuff like fire and water damage would be a big no-no for new renters, even if the law allowed existing renters to stay. The need for meth lab abatement is another one where you basically can't rent it, although in that case they're likely in jail/prison/CPS so it's a moot point. O_o


not

@comcast.net
Maybe if you had a hospitable residence that didn't have outdated stuff in it, it wouldn't have been an issue.

Sure, you can blame the both of you on this one, but it isn't far fetched to think that most people today may not know what they can and cannot block due to people not updating their rentals to code. There's a reason those codes change year after year, let alone after decades. It's a safety hazard and honestly, maybe you should make it a point to do walkthroughs and point out the do's and don'ts in your rentals when you do rent them out.

I'd say it's as much your fault as the renter's.


TheTechGuru

join:2004-03-25
TEXAS
kudos:2
reply to walta
One should not rent a place that is older than themselves, that way one understands everything in it. :-p
--
CompTIA Network+ Certified


not

@comcast.net
said by TheTechGuru:

One should not rent a place that is older than themselves, that way one understands everything in it. :-p

Not everyone has a choice monetarily speaking. It should be up to the owner to properly inform the tenant of ANY and ALL quirks and unknowns about the place. It's called full disclosure and should be done regardless of who or what you're renting/lending out.


cognizantt

join:2009-06-13
Montreal, QC
reply to walta
it's not possible to live in the apartment at the moment, so the tenant is currently living elsewhere.
you are under no obligation whatsoever to do the repairs asap. so you can stall the tenant and say you have no idea when at this point the tenant may return. if asked about when you will begin repairs, you can say right now you're only waiting for feedback from your insurance and your contractor.
keep stalling.
to have her back after what she did is ridiculous.
on top of your expenses for repairs, you're going to have lost rent. if you repair quickly and the tenant is back in, 1) you don't want that person there and 2) based on the tenant's level of intelligence, it's likely something else will happen.
so out the tenant goes.
notify the person that you'll be removing the personal property pending full repairs, have the person be there to take it all.
and that's it.
goodbye and good riddance.

markf

join:2008-01-24
Burlington, ON
kudos:1
Reviews:
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reply to walta
My advice, consult a lawyer competent in landlord/tenant law in your area.

As many have said, laws vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction so what may apply to one area will not apply to another. Same thing with insurance coverages.

A good lawyer cost money upfront, but saves a lot of grief and money down the road. I've been involved in litigation, a bit more money spend up front would have saved $10's of thousands later on.

As a landlord myself, I would evaluate the quality of tenant as well. Are they a long time tenant who pays the rent on time every month, generally respects the property and just made a mistake, or are they someone just off the street that you want to get rid of?

To those saying that the OP shouldn't rent a property that doesn't meet current codes, I would guess that there are millions of properties across NA that don't meet current codes and are sold and rented out every day.

If every property met today's codes, rents would have to shoot through the roof or landlords would walk away from their properties due to the high costs of doing everything up to code.

walta

join:2001-05-22
Saint Louis, MO
kudos:2
reply to cognizantt
Cognizant At this point the tenet has collected all there belonging and found a new place.

The insurance policy does cover lost rental income, It must not be for long as they do not seem to be in any hurry to get things settled.

Walta