Landlord Insurance vs Tenant Insurance: Key Differences 

The debate over settling between a landlord’s insurance and tenant insurance has raged over the decades in Canada. To bail you out of this confusion, we have explained the key differences between these two types of property insurance.

Before getting into the landlord insurance vs tenant insurance discussion, let’s understand the concepts of a landlord and a tenant clearly. If you own the property you wish to use personally or rent out, you need a landlord’s or homeowner’s insurance. Likewise, if you are a tenant and pay rent to use someone else’s property, you need a tenant or renters insurance policy. 

Most landlords and tenants consult reputed insurance brokers to find low-cost policies. Visit to check out the most affordable coverages.

What does a landlord insurance policy cover?

A landlord insurance policy is a type of coverage for homeowners. However, since you would be renting out your apartment, condo, or home, you need more coverage than standard policies. Typically, a landlord’s insurance policy covers the following.

  • Dwelling coverage that protects the structure of the building from any kind of physical or natural damage
  • Coverage for personal property that secures your furniture, appliances, and other belongings from damage, loss, or theft
  • Loss of use (leading to rental income loss) that compensates the property owners if the structure is rendered uninhabitable and tenants need to leave the property
  • Liability protection for landlords, if you are liable for the physical injury of your tenant or guests or accidentally damage their property
  • Missing rent, if the tenant fails to pay or leaves the property before the end of the agreed period

Exclusions of landlord insurance policy

A standard policy for landlords won’t cover breakdowns or malfunctions of appliances in the home. However, you can purchase riders or add-ons based on your requirements. Besides, you need add-ons to cover your property against perils such as water backups, earthquakes, and floods.

A landlord insurance policy won’t provide coverage for the tenant’s belongings. As a landlord, you might request your tenant purchase a renters insurance policy. This will keep their personal belongings covered.

What does a tenant insurance policy cover?

A tenant insurance policy is a scheme designed to protect the belongings of the tenants but not the structure of the building. As a tenant, you don’t have any responsibility to insure the house’s structure. However, it’s imperative to protect your belongings like furniture, apparel, and gadgets. This is why you need a tenant insurance policy.

Suppose there’s a fire or an earthquake destroying the building along with its contents. The landlord’s insurance coverage will protect the owner, compensating for the loss of the building’s structure as well as their personal belongings. 

Since this coverage doesn’t protect the tenant’s belongings, you need a dedicated policy for securing your possessions. Also, you need significant money for relocation and arranging temporary accommodations. A tenant’s insurance policy can bail you out of the financial crisis.

Let’s check what a tenant insurance policy covers.

  • Damage of personal property, including your belongings, resulting from vandalism, natural disasters, or lightning
  • Food, lodging, and accommodation expenses if you need to find an alternative dwelling space while your rented property is damaged
  • Medical bills and personal liabilities if you happen to damage the landlord’s property or cause bodily injury to someone visiting your property

Exclusions of tenant insurance policy

A tenant insurance policy won’t cover the physical structure of the building. Besides, it won’t secure anything you keep outside the rented property. Also, a tenant insurance policy doesn’t cover your car or any belongings you keep inside it.

Although most tenant insurance policies cover liability for dog bites, look out for exclusions in case you own a dangerous breed. The policy also won’t cover things owned by the landlord or any of your roommates (if you are sharing the room).

Tenant insurance vs landlord insurance: Coverage evaluation

Now that we have already discussed tenant insurance vs landlord insurance let’s gain more clarity based on standard coverages.

  1. Belongings

Landlords don’t have the right to use their coverage to protect the tenant’s belongings. Likewise, tenants cannot use their coverage to compensate for the loss of the landlord’s property. Only if a tenant happens to damage the property of the landlord would the damage be compensated by the tenant’s insurance policy. Therefore, there shouldn’t be any overlap in coverages under both these policies.  

  1. Loss of use

The property may not be suitable for dwelling due to damage, fire, or any other peril. If the tenant is forced to find alternative accommodation due to the loss of use, the tenant’s insurance coverage will come into play. On the other hand, if a peril prevents the landlord from renting the home temporarily to tenants, the landlord’s insurance policy will compensate for the loss of rent.

Loss of property use affects the landlord and the tenant in different ways. Depending on whether you are the owner or the tenant, you need to bank on your respective policies.

  1. Liability coverage

Both landlord’s and tenant’s liability insurance coverage provide benefits to the respective parties. At times, disputes between the landlord and the tenant may lead to legal expenses. In some cases, both the landlord and the tenant might have to bear the responsibility if someone is injured on the premises. Therefore, both the landlord and the tenant should have liability coverage to protect them.

  1. Medical expenses

In case someone in the property sustains an injury, both the landlord and the tenant might have to bear the medical expenses. For instance, a visitor might fall or get injured in a common area. Depending on the person who is at fault or neglects repairs, the landlord or the tenant must shell out the medical expenses.

Landlord insurance vs tenant insurance — Endnote 

Now that you know landlord insurance vs tenant insurance differences, you can consult one of the reputed brokers and get your policy customized. 

Established insurance brokers can help you compare quotes from multiple insurers in your city. With professional support, you can compare quotes and get the best property insurance policy recommended.

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