Owning an apartment building can be a great way of generating passive income. However, as a rental property owner, you’re exposed to several potential risks which can lead to losses and expensive lawsuits. Fortunately, many of these risks are covered by commercial apartment building insurance. In this article, we will discuss common risks faced by commercial apartment building owners and steps to claim insurance.
Risks Faced by Commercial Apartment Building Owners
- Bodily Harm - As a landlord, you may be held responsible for bodily injuries incurred by occupants or visitors on your property if the individual making the claims proves that the unfortunate incident was caused by your negligence. In such a scenario, you can be held liable for the claimant's medical and legal expenses and will have to pay a settlement if the claimant successfully proves his case.
- Flouting Safety Norms - You can be held liable for injuries suffered by others due to the presence of a safety hazard on the property. Failure to adhere to safety norms can lead to a liability lawsuit.
- Natural Calamities – Disasters caused by natural elements can cause devastating damage to your property. Standard insurance policies don't cover perils such as earthquakes and floods. To ensure that you have adequate protection, you should get an insurance policy that protects against such risks.
- Specific Liability Claims - Your insurance should include added coverage for specific liability claims such as discrimination, slander, and libel.
- Vehicular Liability - If you own vehicles as part of your rental business, your insurance should cover the bodily injury and property damage claims emanating from incidents involving your business vehicles.
- Animal-Related Incidents - If your tenants have pets on your property, ensure your insurance coverage covers the potential liabilities emanating from pet-related incidents.
- Security Concerns - Usually, tenants carry personal insurance coverage against theft and vandalism. However, you must ensure that your property, especially common areas such as halls and elevators, is safe and well-maintained.
How to File a Commercial Apartment Building Insurance Claim
Even with the best safety measures in place, incidents that require you to make a claim can still happen. Here is how to make a claim:
Understand Your Policy Coverages
To file a successful claim, you first need to have a good grasp of your policy’s coverages, exclusions, deductibles, coverage limit, and the documents you need when making your claim.
Promptly Report the Incident to Your Insurer
Many commercial policies require policyholders to promptly inform the insurer after an incident. Assessing a claim is easier when the loss or damage is still fresh.
Protect Your Property from Further Damage
Most insurers expect you’ll take the necessary steps (often outlined in the policy) to protect your property from additional damage until proper repair work starts.
Steps to Filling a Claim
- Diligently gather evidence (videos, photos, and so on). In the event of a theft or vandalism-related incident, file a police report. Contact your insurer at the earliest to report the incident and file a claim.
- Secure your property from additional loss or damage
- Get replacement/repair estimates
- Submit an accurate Proof of Loss statement. Use the notes, videos, photographs, and contractors' estimates to ensure your Proof of Loss statement is precise. You may take the help of a qualified public adjustor for a more accurate estimate for repairs and replacement.
How Riverbend Insurance Can Help
While commercial apartment ownership comes with certain risks, you can protect yourself against these perils by carrying the right insurance coverage. At Riverbend Insurance, we will provide you with a commercial property insurance policy that adequately protects you and your property. Contact us today to learn more!