Would You Pay $20K For A Week In A Two-Bedroom Apartment?
Super Bowl XLVIII is heading to New York, where amid the arctic blast, rental properties are “red-hot,” according to the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.). That’s because there are 90,000 hotel rooms and 400,000 people who are expected to visit the New York and New Jersey areas at the time of the big game.
“This is the first time the Super Bowl is being held in the New York City metro area,” the organization noted. “As a result, the market for rental properties near the game’s venue, Met Life Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey—just eight miles west of mid-town Manhattan— is red-hot. Peer-to-peer rental websites such as Airbnb are letting consumers tap into this demand, potentially earning a ‘postseason bonus’ by making their homes available to the thousands of football fans and visiting Seattle and Denver faithful.”
WABC-New York spoke with two individuals, identified as “Jarrett” and “Nick,” a few months before we even knew it would be Denver and Seattle facing each other on Super Bowl Sunday. The two men each lived “minutes” from Met Life Stadium. Jarrett was asking $20,000 for a week in his two-bedroom apartment, where he also lives. Nick owned a three-bedroom house in Hasbrouck Heights and was asking $2,500 a night with a five-night commitment per bedroom.
It certainly sounds like a great way to pick up some extra cash, but before going all-in, homeowners and renters need to take precautions before they move forward with an agreement. The I.I.I. is urging both groups to contact their insurers beforehand.
“Before renting out all or part of your home, tell your insurer about your plans to make sure you’re covered if your property is damaged or if someone is injured,” said Jeanne M. Salvatore, senior vice president, chief communications officer and author of the I.I.I.’s Fine Print Blog.
Certain companies may give policyholders some flexibility when it comes to using their property as a rental for one-time, special-occasion income. After all, the Super Bowl doesn’t happen right outside your door every day.
Still, some insurers may insist on additional criteria before allowing such scenarios, possibly requiring the homeowner to purchase additional coverage.
“Keep in mind that there are some insurers who will consider any rental of your home to be a business venture, requiring the purchase of a business policy—specifically either a hotel or a bed and breakfast policy—because a standard homeowners insurance policy excludes losses arising from the operation of a business,” the I.I.I. warns.
“Technological advances have allowed for the growth of the sharing economy,” said Salvatore. “But, if you participate, it is your responsibility to make sure you’re adequately insured. And, if you are a renter also talk to your landlord or look at your lease to make sure you are allowed to rent out your home.”
Super Bowl Sunday is one of the most exciting days in the United States. It’s one of the brief moments that football and non-football fans, Democrats and Republicans, men and women, cats and dogs, can get together and agree on something. However, if you live in the metro New York area, or if you plan on renting from a stranger, make sure you cover your bases ahead of time. Insurers are more than happy to work with you to ensure protections extend beyond your basic policy, but it’s your responsibility to take the necessary procedural steps set forth by the provider. If you are an insurer and know of any clients who might be pursuing such an agreement, extend the courtesy of reaching out and making sure they’re protected.