VRS437 – Lies, Video, and Why Screening and Good Rental Insurance is Essential


This episode of the Vacation Rental Success Podcast is sponsored by Beyond
An automated dynamic pricing solution that utilizes real-time market data to ensure your prices maximize revenue and occupancy


A guest makes a reservation but asks seemingly innocent questions. 

‘What is the lighting like in the house?’,  ‘What direction does it face?’, and ‘Do you have surveillance cameras?’.

Standing alone, these questions might seem innocuous enough but together they could be enough to ring some alarm bells about the purpose of the visit.

It could be a film company of a certain nature wanting to use the home for making videos – definitely not for the purpose of having a relaxing vacation.

While insurance may not seem the most exciting of topics it is one that impacts every single one of us, whether it’s a single condo or multiple properties.  The moment we exchange our property (or a part of it) for money, we are in business, and that brings with it all manner of risks.

One of those risks could be a porn movie being shot in your home.

Andrew Bate of Safely has been involved in insurance as well as travel and hospitality for a decade and joins the podcast to talk about liability, screening, safety, and above all, why an insurance policy needs to be written for your property.

In a previous interview for the online industry magazine, Short Term Rentalz, Andrew talked about the need for screening and good insurance:

“the main barrier for second homeowners to rent out their properties is worry around letting an ‘internet’ stranger into their property to sleep in their bed. Property managers can ease these concerns through effective guest screening to stop the ‘bad guests’ before they get through the door – identifying sex offenders, criminals, and the small, but damaging number of guests who have already destroyed other homes. Powered by analytics, comprehensive guest screening solutions effectively turn internet strangers into trusted guests. The end result: a happy reassured homeowner.

The property manager/ owner relationship is built on trust. Property managers need to be able to protect the property assets of the owner. Guest screening, together with insurance, is the way to earn trust and strengthen owner relations.”

In my day-to-day work as a property manager, I talk to many owners who are interested in renting out their homes and am often surprised at how little they have thought about insuring the property.  Many think that their general homeowners policy will cover them for rentals without understanding the wider implications of operating in the short-term rental market, and what liability issues they may face.  Others believe their AirBNB cover replaces the need to get full insurance cover.

 In this episode of the podcast, Andrew Bate of Safely joins me to talk about what this means to every host and manager.

In this episode, you’ll hear

  • The two questions every owner/operator needs to ask
  • How insufficient home protection can result in a hefty cost
  • How hosts and managers can protect themselves against the potential of damage
  • The key questions guests might ask that should raise red flags on a reservation
  • How you might know if a guest is planning on making a ‘movie’ in your home
  • What to do if a guest makes a negligence claim
  • Why knowing your building code can save you from a law-suit

Mentioned in this podcast:

Navigating the World of Guest Screening and Insurance – Short Term Rentalz

Safely.com