A Future Claims Experience Is Determined by Two Things:

Proper insurance illustration displays a person scratching his head while looking towards a home covered by a bubble with holes in it. The home has a question mark above it. A second person is displayed with a suitcase. This graphic illustrates the short-term rental home owner questioning if his home is insured from common risks associated with Airbnb, Vrbo, vacation rentals.

Does Coverage Exist?

When purchasing a vacation rental insurance policy, it’s crucial to ensure the policy would actually provide coverage if an incident were to occur at the vacation rental property, as most policies have exclusions leaving the host without coverage.

Proper Insurance illustration shows a person with a suitcase walking into a short-term rental home that is covered with a bubble. Two people stand in the foreground of the illustration - one wearing a hard hat and the other carrying a brief case.

Does Service Come With It?

While having top-notch coverage is important, it is useless when the service involved is poor. Always do your research by looking at a company’s online review presence and whether claims are handled by a 3rd party or handled in-house.

Deeper Look Into Coverage

Not all short-term vacation rental insurance is created equal, and it really all boils down to coverage. When an occurrence happens at your vacation rental property, it’s either covered in your policy, or it’s not.

The confusing part comes because there are literally thousands of occurrences that could happen, and insurance agents are not trained to answer all the occurrence questions: Is this covered, what about that, and if this happens…?

Thankfully, Proper has Super Agents who specialize in insurance for short-term rentals. The only product they sell is Proper’s custom vacation rental policy, and they know it inside and out, all 90+ pages!

Airbnb Insurance Provider shows a short-term rental home destroyed from guest-caused fire damage.

Third-Party vs. In-House Administration

The initial step in filing an insurance claim is to contact your carrier or agent and provide details. Unfortunately, immediately after those details are provided, you are typically sent to a third-party administrator or TPA, which is a company that specializes in processing and handling insurance claims on behalf of the carrier. Or, in special cases such as Proper, the insurance company legally grants claims administration directly to the general agent.

Third-Party Administration

Most companies outsource claims handling to a 3rd party company, which leads to a slow, frustrating process. In addition, 3rd-party companies have no interest in the insured and too many hands in the pot. The truth is their specialty often lies in denying claims and providing details back on why coverage does NOT exist.

In-House Administration

In-house claims administration means when a claim is filed, it stays with the company that sold it, which leads to a more liberal coverage interpretation. The middleman is cut out, so the primary interest lies with the insured, which leads to a more seamless and timely process. It’s superior in every way for the insured.

Proper Provides In-House Claims Administration

At Proper, we have what’s called in-house claims administration, which means we administer the claim from start to finish ourselves and do not use a third-party administrator. In the past, we have used TPA’s, but because of our expertise in the vacation rental industry, both Lloyd’s of London and Concert Specialty Insurance have given us approval.

This is a big deal because we try everything in our power to find coverage for our clients via the policy/carrier, not deny coverage.  This is clearly reflected in our real claim’s reviews: Proper Insurance at 4.8/5 (96%) – A

Proper Insurance illustration shows a man wearing a hard helmet talking with two business women.

The Truth Behind Online Reviews

Reviews are everything in today’s world.  The irony is that most consumers make insurance buying decisions based on words like fast and affordable with online reviews to match, both of which have nothing to do with the actual insurance product. The industry gets away with this simply because a U.S. homeowner only files a claim about every 9 years.  This would be the equivalent of buying a car, parking it for 9 years, and then one day having a need to drive it. The question is, will the car start?

It’s no surprise that a quick search on Trustpilot reveals U.S. home insurance carriers have poor reviews.  When’s the last time you watched a movie on Netflix or bought anything on Amazon with less than a 4/5 (80%) – B review? Insurance for your short-term vacation rental should be no different.


Note: The above review graphic is based on Trustpilot review ratings as of April 2023.

Trustpilot’s U.S. Home Insurance Carriers TrustScore Ratings

Real-Life Host Tragedies Avoided With Loss of Business Income Coverage

Look no further than Gatlinburg, TN, where there was a historic fire in 2016 that destroyed 2,500 structures, and again in 2022 where another 350 vacation homes were lost. In fact, Proper insured almost 20 properties that were lost in the fire, pictured below.  The Proper policy provides business income coverage, with an actual loss sustained valuation, and no time limit; it’s only subject to the limits an insured chooses. This means is we pay insured’s what they actually lose in business income as the result of a loss, and there is no time limit on payments.

Unfortunately, many of the property owners in these TN fires carried what’s called additional living expense or loss of rents with fair market value, which both typically carry a 12-month cap. This means an insured is only paid the fair value of lost rents and the payments stop coming after 12 months. The reality is it takes 2 years to rebuild after a fire and vacation rentals generate much higher rents than other properties, so in the end, it’s not fair at all. Most property owners don’t ever imagine a total fire loss, but if it happens, your insurance coverage reimbursement lies in the details.

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