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Damage Protection - Common Issues & Questions

We offer a Damage Protection insurance product which covers minor damage to your property. This sounds similar to the guarantees offered by some channels like Vrbo, but isn't - you are the insured, not the guest, and the guest has nothing to do with whether or not your claim is honored.  Read more about it in our Damage Protection overview article.

This article provides a list of common questions and answers about Damage Protection that are not covered elsewhere.

Does the insured property, guest, or property owner have to be in the United States?

No. Damage Protection can be used for any property worldwide and the owner or manager (i.e. you) can be a citizen of any country.

What is the deductible for Damage Protection insurance?

There isn't one - the coverage offered is first-dollar.

Long-term bookings (30+ day stays)

Damage Protection will cover damage for long-term stays. However, each 30 day period requires a separate policy. So a 31-60 day booking would require 2 policies, a 61-90 day booking would require 3 policies and so on. There is no limit to the number of months that can be purchased or how long the stay can be. If you have 31+ day stays that need to be covered, these policies will automatically be set up and charged.

When exactly does the coverage begin?

The coverage takes effect on the date and time the guest checks in as a registered guest at the Rental Property, provided the appropriate plan cost has been paid before check-in.

When exactly does the coverage terminate?

The coverage ends on the earlier of: (1) the normal check-out time on the guest's scheduled check-out date from the Rental Property; or (2) the actual departure date of the guest from the Rental Property. In other words, if they leave the property early, the coverage ends when they leave.  If they leave the property late, the coverage ends when they should have left.

Do I have to pay for all of the pre-existing bookings that were in place prior to turning on Damage Protection?

When you turn on Damage Protection, it starts working on bookings from that point forward. You can choose to add it to pre-existing bookings that are still in the future, using the "Batch Update Bookings" button.

When the property is blocked-off for personal use, or for the owners to stay, do we have to pay for the insurance for that stay?

Damage Protection only applies to bookings, not blocked-off times. So just create a blocked-off time and it won't apply. If you create a booking for an owner or personal use, contact support.

I already have damage protection via my channels (Vrbo, Airbnb)

It's important to understand the differences between the products.  The RentalGuardian Damage Protection product that is bought through OwnerRez covers you as the PM/owner and the guest is irrelevant.  Whether they admit fault or not doesn't matter - you are the insured party holding the policy.

Guests can choose to buy their own damage protection many other ways.  Even if channels didn't offer this on their booking page, the guest could still shop for damage protection through other ad-hoc carriers or online services.  But what they buy really covers them, not you - any claim involves their admission of guilt and cooperation.

Therefore, it is a lot less important/valuable to you than the RentalGuardian product that actually covers and pays you.

Even if guests purchase damage protection from a channel or some other source, it doesn't matter - where possible, you should still require a credit card on file and/or refundable security deposit, because that's the only way that you can be sure you will get paid in case of damages.

Should you need to charge the guest for damages, the coverage they purchased is useful to them - they can take your bill, file a claim against their policy, and get reimbursed.  But that's irrelevant to you.

That said, the terms of our Damage Protection program do allow you to not purchase our DP coverage for bookings that are already covered some other way, and the channels' coverage does technically meet this requirement.  Contact the Helpdesk for assistance in configuring your account to exclude channel bookings for DP.

If I turn off Damage Protection / close my OwnerRez account / sell a property, will my existing Damage Protection policies that I've paid for be canceled?

No! Legally, each individual Damage Protection coverage policy for a specific booking is its own individual insurance policy, with its own legal existence.

  • Turning off Damage Protection on your account does not cancel any policies already purchased, it just prevents any new ones from being created.
  • Similarly, if you close your OwnerRez account, any Damage Protection policies already purchased continue in effect.  You can make any claims against them directly with the insurance company.
  • If you sell your property to someone else and the bookings transfer over to them, any Damage Protection policies already purchased can transfer to them as well.
  • If your property is taken out of service for any reason, and you cancel future bookings, any Damage Protection policies purchased for them will automatically be canceled and you'll be credited for their cost.

Does Damage Protection insurance cover damage caused by pets?

Pet damage is covered only if the property is specifically documented in your Rental Agreement as being pet friendly.  Otherwise, it is excluded from the policy.

Does Damage Protection insurance cover damage to linens?

No, damage to linens is specifically excluded from the policy.

Damage Protection Insurance is required for all properties in my OwnerRez account - but, some of my "properties" aren't really vacation rental properties.

Some of our clients use OwnerRez to keep track of more than just vacation rental properties - for instance, they may have a "property" that is really a golf cart, a boat, or even a hotel room.

Damage Protection insurance doesn't even cover moving vehicles, and is designed for conventional vacation rental properties, so it wouldn't make sense to have to buy it for other things.  The OwnerRez control panel does not allow you to skip purchasing DP for specific properties if you have DP turned on at all - but, the Helpdesk can take care of this for you.

The insurance company does have a few requirements, though:

  • You can only skip DP by class or type of "property", not be picking-and-choosing otherwise similar properties.  So, you can skip DP on all your golf carts or boats.  But, you cannot say, "I want DP on my condo in Miami Beach since spring breakers rent it and trash the place, but not on my ski lodge in Aspen."
  • You must provide us a list and justification showing each property and the class it's in.  As you add new properties, you'll need to notify us by providing us a complete updated list, so we can set the DP settings appropriately.

Our Helpdesk can assist you in getting this set up.

Who is the actual insured party, who owns the insurance policy and makes claims?

You are - that is, the OwnerRez subscriber who owns the OwnerRez account that paid for the policy.  The guest is not party to the insurance party, is not involved, does not have to agree that they caused damage, in fact doesn't even need to know the policy exists.  If you are a property manager, the actual owner of the property also isn't a party to the policy, if it's your OwnerRez account.  Thus, all claims are made by you, and paid out to you.

What is the difference between "Standard" and "Enhanced" coverage?

Enhanced coverage includes everything that our Standard Damage Protection has always included except that it also adds $1,000,000 in host liability and $15,000 in bedbug coverage.

Is guest verification part of the claims process?

Guest verification may be a normal, though comparatively rare, part of claim processes. The underwriter has the option to request guest verification for damages reported. 7-10% of the time (on average) the program underwriter will send a guest verification request for claims where the guest themselves did not report the damage. Put another way, 90+% of the time, there will be no additional guest verification request.

Guest denial or refusal to respond to such a request does not necessarily negate a damage reimbursement payment. The underwriter uses guest verification for quality control; it is discretionary for the underwriter, and is not used in a majority of cases.