The Best Insurance for Airbnb Hosts of 2023

If you’re a host on this popular vacation rental site, then you’ll need the best insurance for Airbnb hosts in case of property damage by a guest or guest injuries you’re found responsible for.

Best Overall

The Best Insurance for Airbnb Hosts Option Proper Insurance

Proper Insurance

See It

Runner-Up

The Best Insurance for Airbnb Hosts Option Steadily Insurance

Steadily Insurance

See It

Best for Guest Screening

The Best Insurance for Airbnb Hosts Option Safely

Safely

See It

We may earn revenue from the products available on this page and participate in affiliate programs. Learn More ›

As one of the best rental listing sites, Airbnb offers property owners a chance to own and manage a piece of real estate while generating a profit—not to mention the joy that comes with providing a memorable experience for renters during their short- or long-term visit. But being a property owner comes with major responsibilities, and one of those is carrying the proper insurance coverage.

Not only does purchasing the best insurance for Airbnb hosts protect a property in case of damage by a guest, but it offers liability claims coverage too, in case of guest injuries. However, we found a few insurance providers that go above and beyond this basic type of coverage by providing unique coverages that almost any vacation rental property owner can appreciate.

  1. BEST OVERALL: Proper Insurance
  2. RUNNER-UP: Steadily Insurance
  3. BEST FOR GUEST SCREENING: Safely
  4. BEST EXTENDED POLICIES: CBIZ
  5. ALSO CONSIDER: Allstate
The Best Insurance for Airbnb Hosts Options
Photo: istockphoto.com

What to Consider When Choosing One of the Best Insurance Companies for Airbnb Hosts

Choosing the best insurance companies for vacation or rental property owners means matching the insurance provider’s offerings with the unique needs of the property owner. It also means reviewing and considering multiple components of a policy, such as the service area, maximum coverage type, and the claims process, to name a few.

Service Area

Service area, or what state(s) an insurance provider operates in, is extremely important to an Airbnb or Vrbo host. While a host lives in one particular place, it’s entirely possible their vacation- or short-term rental is located in another. When selecting the best insurance company, it’s critical for property owners to make sure the company provides coverage where the rental is located. Fortunately, there are multiple providers worth considering that offer coverage nationwide and in Washington, D.C., but it’s best for property owners to confirm this before proceeding with a quote.

One point for customers to keep in mind is if a provider does offer coverage in the desired location, not all coverages or policy endorsements may be available in the state—some providers may even limit coverage to a specific ZIP code.

Insurance Policy Type

Property owners generally have two types of policies to choose from: a stand-alone policy, or an add-on to an existing policy, such as homeowners insurance. Some insurance companies provide insurance for Airbnb and other short-term rental properties as stand-alone policies only, while other companies only offer this coverage as an add-on.

Obtaining coverage through an existing provider and as an add-on to an existing policy is certainly a convenient option for dealing with either a personal or rental-related policy. However, a stand-alone policy offered by a provider that specializes in Airbnb rentals is tempting, since the providers likely offer more specialized types of coverage. Property owners will want to look for landlord insurance to cover the structure of the home as well as to protect themselves from liability.

Maximum Coverage Amount

Whether it’s a stand-alone policy or an add-on to an existing policy, the coverage amount is the heart of the policy. Maximum coverage amount is the most the insurance company will pay for an approved claim, less the deductible (the portion of each claim the policyholder is required to pay). Insurance providers generally allow the policyholder to choose the amount of coverage they need.

Property owners have unique considerations for their policies, including whether the coverage amount is valid for a full calendar year, or if it applies to each rental period. This is a crucial point and will need to be confirmed as an owner is ironing out policy details.

Premiums

Premiums are simply the cost a policyholder pays in exchange for coverage. Policyholders must pay the premiums to keep the policy active. Annual premiums are common, although some providers may allow a policyholder to break their premium payments into monthly or quarterly payments instead.

Cost is a major factor, and the cost of a policy depends on the amount of coverage the policyholder selects. The more coverage options and the higher the coverage amounts, the more expensive the policy. There may be other factors influencing the cost, too, some of which are out of an owner’s hands, such as the location of the property. For example, if a property is located in a higher crime area or a region prone to extreme weather, the premium will likely be higher.

Quote Process

The quote process is the first step in narrowing down the selection of the best short-term rental insurance companies for Airbnb hosts. Every provider offers a slightly different process for providing quotes to owners. Some providers may provide quotes exclusively through agents, which means a phone call or in-person visit. Others may offer the quote process entirely online from start to finish online, or even through an app. Or, it could be a combination of these, where the quote starts online and is finalized over the phone or in an agent’s office.

There is no right or wrong way to get a quote, but it’s advantageous for a property owner to choose a provider that matches their preferred style of communication.

Claims Process

A provider’s claim process is another critical part of choosing the right provider. While a property owner might assume the cost is the most important factor, the claims process is an equally important consideration. Filing a claim is often the result of a stressful event, such as damage, theft, or an injury. It’s essential to have a provider that offers multiple options for filing claims and in an owner’s preferred communication style (over the phone, through email, or online), so it’s one less point of stress after filing a claim. Plus, a streamlined process means the owner gets their payout sooner, which is significant when counting on rental income.

Endorsements

Most basic stand-alone policies for Airbnb hosts, short-term rental owners, or vacation rental owners include property damage coverage against events such as fire, theft, and certain weather events. A policy likely includes liability coverage for the policyholder, too, in case there is an injury on the property while the home is being rented out. Add-ons, or endorsements, help customize policies further by providing extended areas of coverage. For example, an Airbnb host might prefer adding an endorsement such as coverage for a swimming pool, hot tub, sauna, or other guest amenities. Not only does this provide a more robust policy, but it may also offer greater peace of mind for the owner knowing there is a wider scope of coverage.

Deductibles

An insurance deductible is the out-of-pocket expense a policyholder must pay when filing certain types of claims. Once the claimant pays the deductible, the insurance provider pays for the remaining costs of the approved claim, up to the policy limits, such as for damaged or stolen goods, structural property damage, or damage caused by guests. Deductible amounts can reach into the several thousand dollar range, depending on the provider. While it may be tempting for a property owner to sign up for a $0 deductible so there are no out-of-pocket expenses with a claim, it can increase the cost of the policy premiums. Property owners will want to carefully weigh the $0 deductible versus the increased cost of their premiums and find the right balance for their budget.

AM Best Rating

Having insight into an insurance provider’s financial strength is a tough feat for the average shopper to accomplish. The AM Best company is a third-party credit-rating agency specializing in the insurance industry, and it provides an objective snapshot of a provider’s finances. The average consumer can make a more informed selection by checking out the AM Best rating assigned to each insurance company. AM Best thoroughly reviews each provider’s financial strength and creditworthiness and assigns a rating based on the findings. The rating is as high as A++, which is a “superior” rating, or as low as a D, which is considered a “poor” rating. In general, a rating of B or higher is considered “good.”

Our Top Picks

Airbnb hosts (or any short-term or vacation rental property owner) will want to consider an insurance provider that offers an expansive coverage area, plentiful options for policy customization, and a user-friendly quote and claims process, among many other factors.

Best Overall

Proper Insurance

See It

Why It Made the Cut:

Proper Insurance tailors its coverage to Airbnb hosts, making it a smart choice for property owners who want a complete and customized policy.

Proper Insurance is a nationwide provider of policies for Airbnb hosts, and it offers unique coverage options focused specifically on these types of property owners. The quote process starts with a phone call, so the owner can get all the information up front and can get same-day coverage if necessary. Proper Insurance also offers a high maximum coverage amount of $2 million on general liability insurance, so in the event a guest sustains an injury for which the property owner is found to be at fault, there will be a significant level of financial protection.

Policyholders have the option of choosing a high personal property deductible of $10,000, which may be tempting for property owners looking to save money but can result in much smaller payouts for policyholders if they need to file a claim. Where Proper Insurance really shines is in the amount of specialty coverages it offers, such as $15,000 bed bug extermination coverage, $25,000 water backup damage coverage (which covers damage caused by drain and sewer backups), and loss assessment coverage (which covers the cost of an additional assessment fee following an insurance claim for properties located within a community managed by a homeowners association).

 

Specs

  • Service area: 50 states and Washington, D.C.
  • Insurance policy type: Stand-alone
  • Maximum coverage amount: $2 million (in general liability coverage)
  • Quote process: Phone
  • Claims process: Phone
  • AM Best rating: A

Pros

  • Specialty in short-term rental insurance for Airbnb properties
  • High $2 million liability coverage amount available
  • Bed bug infestation coverage available
  • Loss assessment coverage available
  • Relatively high $25,000 water backup coverage available
  • Same-day coverage available

Cons

  • High $10,000 deductible on personal property claims possible

Runner-Up

Steadily Insurance

See It

Why It Made the Cut

Steadily Insurance offers a wide variety of policy options and terms, including manufactured home coverage and multiple deductible choices, for true policy customization.

Steadily Insurance stands out for several reasons, including the quick online quote process, as well as an option for a quote over the phone for customers who prefer to explain their needs to a live agent. Although not currently rated by AM Best, Steadily offers coverage nationwide and could be a good option for those who have several rental properties in different areas of the country. If an owner decides to move forward with a policy, they can choose up to $1 million in building structure and general liability coverage. Additionally, Steadily’s policies come with standard water damage coverage with a coverage limit equal to 10 percent of the dwelling limit. Such coverage is often only offered as an extra add-on, so having it as a standard inclusion is very noteworthy. Policyholders who wish to have higher coverage limits for this type of protection can choose a coverage amount as high as 100 percent of their dwelling limit as well.

Additionally, Steadily Insurance offers optional loss assessment coverage, as well as manufactured home coverage if needed, which is a specialty coverage not all providers offer. Owners will want to note there are multiple deductible options available, but there is a high $10,000 deductible option, too. If an owner selects the higher deductible, it could mean a substantially smaller payout in the event of a claim. However, the choice of deductible rests with the policyholder, and it should be possible for a property owner to choose a deductible amount that will fit their budget while still providing a reasonable payout upon making a claim.

 

Specs

  • Service area: 50 states and Washington, D.C.
  • Insurance policy type: Stand-alone
  • Maximum coverage amount: $1 million (in building structure and general liability coverage)
  • Quote process: Online, phone
  • Claims process: Phone, email
  • AM Best rating: Not rated

Pros

  • Standard water damage coverage
  • Loss assessment coverage available
  • Manufactured home coverage available
  • Quick and user-friendly online quote process

Cons

  • Not currently rated by AM Best
  • High $10,000 deductible possible

Best for Guest Screening

Safely

See It

Why It Made the Cut:

Safely stands out for its numerous digital tools, including its streamlined customer portal for managing claims, plus the automated guest screening included in every policy.

Safely focuses exclusively on short-term rental insurance, which owners may appreciate when calling in with questions or dealing with claims. While the quote process may start with a phone call, once a property owner transitions to a policyholder there are multiple digital tools available at their disposal, including an online claims portal to easily upload receipts and track claims. Plus, claims may be paid out in as little as 48 hours. Safely is not currently rated by AM Best, but this doesn’t mean customers should disregard this company for their insurance needs—they may just need to rely a little more heavily on reviews from other Airbnb hosts.

Although there is no weather-related damage coverage or income loss coverage offered, Safely does include guest-screening services in every policy. This advanced feature conducts guest background checks and assesses potential risks a guest might pose, which could help an owner avoid potential issues.

 

Specs

  • Service area: 50 states and Washington, D.C.
  • Insurance policy type: Stand-alone
  • Maximum coverage amount: $1 million (in general liability and guest-caused structural property damage coverage)
  • Quote process: Phone
  • Claims process: Online
  • AM Best rating: Not rated

Pros

  • Specialty in short-term rental insurance and guest screening
  • Standard automated guest screening
  • User-friendly online customer portal to conveniently manage claims
  • Some claims may be paid out within 48 hours

Cons

  • Weather-related damage not covered
  • Loss of revenue not covered
  • Not currently rated by AM Best

Best Extended Policies

CBIZ

See It

Why It Made the Cut:

CBIZ offers a large number of coverage endorsements, which takes a policy from basic to customized for any policyholder.

CBIZ stands out for its wide variety of amenity coverage endorsements available. Examples of these extra options include coverage for boats, golf carts, trampolines, zip lines, or even bed bug infestation. With these additional coverage options, Airbnb hosts can insure more areas and aspects of their rental property, especially if they have unique amenities on-site to entertain guests.

Property owners who are covered by CBIZ can choose a building claim deductible that ranges anywhere from $2,500 to $25,000. The upper limit on this range is extremely high and could significantly impact the size of any payout that a policyholder may stand to receive. However, this only applies to building or dwelling damage claims, not personal property claims.

CBIZ offers an online quote tool, although an owner does have to finalize the quote by phone and the tool is not as user-friendly as it could be. Finally, the company has an A++ AM Best rating, which is the highest possible and suggests a strong financial standing and creditworthiness.

 

Specs

  • Service area: 50 states and Washington, D.C.
  • Insurance policy type: Stand-alone
  • Maximum coverage amount: $1 million (in general liability coverage)
  • Quote process: Online
  • Claims process: Phone, email
  • AM Best rating: A++

Pros

  • Extremely wide selection of amenity coverage endorsements available
  • Bed bug infestation coverage available
  • A++ AM Best rating

Cons

  • Quotes cannot be completed over the phone
  • Somewhat user-unfriendly online quote process
  • High $25,000 deductible on building claims possible

Also Consider

Allstate

See It

Why It Made the Cut:

Allstate is worth considering for any property owner who values convenient policy and claims management tools, including a digital experience or through an agent.

Allstate doesn’t offer a stand-alone policy for Airbnb hosts, but policyholders may appreciate what it does offer, including a convenient policy and claims management tool in the company’s mobile app. Owners may even be eligible for claim forgiveness if they’re concerned about potential rate increases. Allstate’s Claim RateGuard feature could help policyholders avoid rate increases following a claim. If a policyholder files a claim once every 5 years, their rates will not increase as a result of that claim. This could help policyholders avoid paying higher premiums on their insurance over the long run.

It’s important for Airbnb hosts to know they have to purchase an Allstate homeowners insurance policy and can only include home-sharing service coverage as an add-on. This can be a drawback for any host who wants a dedicated insurance policy for their rental property. However, if a property owner already has coverage through Allstate on the property, this coverage may be a convenient add-on versus needing to start a new policy. Owners will also want to note the coverage is relatively lower with only $10,000 in personal property coverage per rental period available—though this amount may be adequate for property owners who have small rentals without many items inside.

 

Specs

  • Service area: 49 states and Washington, D.C.
  • Insurance policy type: Endorsement
  • Maximum coverage amount: $10,000 (in personal property coverage)
  • Quote process: Phone, agent
  • Claims process: App, phone, agent
  • AM Best rating: A+

Pros

  • Convenient policy and claims management via mobile app
  • Potential to avoid rate increases following a claim

Cons

  • Short-term rental coverage unavailable as a stand-alone policy
  • Relatively low $10,000 personal property coverage amount per rental period

Our Verdict

We chose Proper Insurance because of its exclusive dedication to Airbnb hosts or other short-term rental property owners. This can make it easier for owners to deal with claims or get specific questions answered regarding their rental property. Another top pick worth considering is Steadily Insurance, because it also offers stand-alone policies for short-term rentals and includes water damage coverage standard in each policy.

How We Chose the Best Insurance Companies for Airbnb Hosts

We considered multiple factors when selecting the best home-sharing insurance companies for Airbnb hosts. Specific items that owners are most impacted by, such as coverage area and amounts and endorsements available, were all reviewed and individually considered.

The quote and claims process were also reviewed, since these are part of the overall customer experience. Financial stability and creditworthiness of the providers are key elements as well, which is why we consulted sources such as AM Best, where applicable.

Before You Choose One of the Best Insurance Companies for Airbnb Hosts

Airbnb hosts will want to note it’s not a legal requirement to purchase a stand-alone policy, or add it on to an existing one. An owner can decide how much risk they’re willing to take on when offering their property for guest use, which could result in damage, theft, or an injury.

How does Airbnb work when it comes to its insurance offerings? The company does offer several insurance options through its website, both for liability and property damage. The policy terms vary and may not offer the full breadth of coverage a stand-alone or add-on policy can provide, including customization. This means an Airbnb host may choose to review multiple insurance options and pick the one that offers the most comprehensive coverage for their rental property. This can help them find the best rental property insurance for their specific needs.

Cost of Opting for One of the Best Insurance Companies for Airbnb Hosts

Similar to how other forms of insurance work, the cost of doing business with an insurance provider depends on the specific policy. The Insurance Information Institute (III) lists three major factors influencing the cost of insurance for a vacation or rental home: location, type of property, and amenities.

The location of a property impacts the risk to an insurance company, which in turn impacts the rates. If a location is deemed riskier, such as in a flood-prone area or an area with a history of wildfires, then the rates may increase. The type of property, such as whether it’s in a homeowners association or in a gated community, may also impact the rate.

More amenities may ensure a greater chance of rental income, but it can also add costs to a policy. For example, if a property includes a swimming pool or a hot tub, then it may result in higher insurance premiums.

The Advantages of Opting for One of the Best Insurance Companies for Airbnb Hosts

There’s no doubt there’s a tremendous amount of risk for an owner when hosting guests for short-term rentals through Airbnb, especially with property damage and injury risks. However, a comprehensive Airbnb host insurance policy can offer additional protection that can reduce the out-of-pocket costs of unexpected guest damages or liability claims.

The best insurance for Airbnb hosts offer significant advantages, including:

  • Numerous options to customize the policy for the host’s exact needs;
  • Customized deductible and coverage amounts, so an owner can tailor the policy for their budget; and
  • Multiple available endorsements specifically for hosts, including loss of income coverage, in case the property can’t be rented due to a covered loss.

FAQs

We’ve answered a few of the most common questions owners (or guests) have regarding the best insurance for Airbnb hosts.

Q. Does Airbnb insurance cover damages?

Most short-term rental insurance policies include property damage coverage, although an owner may be responsible for a deductible (the out-of-pocket costs) before the claim is paid out.

Q. Can Airbnb hosts charge guests for damages they cause?

Yes, there are scenarios where a guest is expected to pay for damages. In order to file a claim, the host must submit a request through the Airbnb Resolution Center, and if the company determines the guest was responsible for the damage, it will charge the guest’s payment method to cover repair. Airbnb also offers an appeals process for guests who feel they have been charged for damages they did not cause.

Q. What isn’t covered by Airbnb host insurance?

Airbnb host insurance does not cover any damage caused by a guest. An owner must purchase a separate Host Damage Protection or Host Protection Insurance policy. The Airbnb host insurance doesn’t cover any damage or injuries that were intentional either.

Q. How does Airbnb resolve disputes?

Airbnb offers an Airbnb Resolution Center for disputes. A guest or owner has up to 60 days after a reservation to submit the first complaint.

Q. Can an Airbnb host charge extra for cleaning?

Yes, Airbnb hosts can use discretion and charge an additional cleaning fee.

Q. What is the compensation policy for Airbnb?

A guest can cancel a reservation up to 30 days prior to check-in and receive a 100 percent refund. However, after the 30-day mark, the guest can work with Airbnb to find an alternative property or receive a partial refund.

Share
Sara Coleman Avatar

Sara Coleman

Contributing Writer

Sara Coleman is a full-time writer, editor, and published author. She covers personal finance and lifestyle topics ranging from insurance and credit cards to small business and pet ownership. Her work has appeared in numerous publications, including Bankrate, Joy Wallet, Wayfair, and Credible. When not writing, Sara enjoys ushering her kids from one activity to the next and spending time with friends and family.

WHY YOU CAN TRUST BOB VILA