The terrible scenes of migrants struggling to survive and seek refuge in European countries have affected many of us in recently. Indeed in the face of perceived political intransigence generous individuals have volunteered to open their own homes up to refugees to assist with the humanitarian crisis (Refugees welcome! Meet the British families who have opened their homes to asylum seekers – Guardian 7/9/2015. However, if you are considering this there are potential insurance implications to consider.
Firstly if you were letting refugees live independently in a second home or a property you would need to think about purchasing specific landlord insurance noting asylum seekers as your tenancy type, perhaps replacing your existing buildings insurance. A standard home insurance policy may not provide adequate protection if damage was caused to your property by your new tenants, neither would your own legal liability be defended if one of your tenants became injured or their property damaged because of a failure on your part.
Should you have refugees staying in your home with you as guests it would be wise to contact your home insurer. Again a standard home insurance policy will deliver protection if you have guests but may not if they are there for an extended period of time. In these circumstances different insurers will act in different ways and there is no absolute consensus. Some insurers may look to exclude cover for theft unless by violent or forcible entry and have a premium loading as there will be more people in the home and therefore a higher risk of claiming from things such as accidental damage.
Our view is that whenever there are alterations to your home or property conditions the best thing to do is speak to your insurance provider.
In the face of this human crisis insurance problems do seem insignificant but with any solution there are practicalities, and we hope this article helps.
For more information on how you can help How do I offer a room to a refugee? – Guardian 11/9/2015