Risks in renting your house to soccer fans
HOTEL, BED and breakfast (B&B) and home owners who are considering providing accommodation for the 400 000 visitors expected during the World Cup are opening themselves up to huge potential risks by failing to take out appropriate insurance cover.
Clint Harker, head of insurance at Pinion Insurance Brokers, an Aon Group Company, says South Africans should not assume they are covered for incidents and events that occur while renting out their homes to visiting soccer fans.
“Clients face the real possibility of being sued by foreign visitors and not having any cover to meet the ensuing expenses,” he says.
Recently, a client of his was sued by an American family for well over R20 million due to a liability claim against a South African citizen.
Harker says it is possible for people planning to rent out their properties to obtain liability cover that is not normally available on traditional personal lines policies.
Harker says B&Bs and private individuals could benefit by specifying their cover for the duration of the tournament. “It is important to be aware of how costly disruptions to services due to unforeseen circumstances could be during the four weeks of the tournament,” he says.
“Owners of hotels and B&Bs should assess whether they are covered for loss of revenue due to cancellations, staff stay-aways and failure of essential equipment such as air-conditioners or heaters.
“Arranging cover for this will be particularly important for B&Bs and hotels in congested areas of Cape Town and Johannesburg; especially areas close to the soccer stadia and fan parks, where parking is likely to cause congestion.”
Noise pollution is also likely to be a problem for establishments in areas close to major events. Some insurance policies include cover for noise pollution from the premises within 500m of the establishment. These policies may include cover for the death or hospitalisation of “key members” of a business.
Harker recommends that anyone offering accommodation during the World Cup should check with their brokers whether their policies will cover them for all eventualities.