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Commercial landlord insurance

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What's on this page

Why do you need commercial property landlord insurance?

Shops, clinics, hospitality or offices – our business landlord insurance policies flex to cover thousands of premises and the revenue they generate. From commercial buildings insurance for landlords to accidental damage, excess protection and your improvement works, there’s a range of specific covers to add and remove.

  • unoccupied property cover, for peace of mind while the building’s empty
  • insure a licensed restaurant or takeaway (not widely available elsewhere)
  • claims paid in 24 hours for 80 per cent of settled claims
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What does commercial property insurance cover?

Landlords’ commercial property insurance policies usually start with buildings cover, plus accidental damage protection for things like a smashed window or leak that ruins your interiors. Many landlords also choose to add contents insurance, in case furniture or other items you’ve provided are damaged, lost or stolen. Bear in mind employers’ liability cover too – it can be a legal requirement.

Commercial buildings insurance for landlords

In case disaster hits and your property gets damaged.

What's typically covered by landlord commercial building insurance?

  • damage to your property caused by incidents like fire, lightning, explosion, malicious damage and escape of water

For example:

  • you’re renting your property to a bakery business, and an overnight fire causes structural damage, forcing a partial rebuild

What you’ll need additional cover for

  • accidental damage to the property caused by your tenants – you’ll need to add our specific accidental damage cover for this

Read more about buildings insurance for landlords

Commercial landlords’ contents insurance

In case disaster hits and your contents get damaged.

What's typically covered by commercial landlords’ contents insurance?

  • damage to your contents caused by incidents like fire, lightning, explosion, malicious damage and escape of water
  • contents include things like your appliances and furniture

For example:

  • a burst pipe in the toilets at your property causes damage to your mirrors and woodwork
  • artwork and other decorative items belonging to you are stolen during a break-in at your tenant’s shop

Read more about landlords contents insurance

Commercial landlords’ improvements insurance

In case you make structural changes to your property.

What's typically covered by commercial landlords’ improvements insurance?

  • changes to the structure of your property, like partition walls or wooden flooring (things you’d leave behind if you sold the property)

For example:

  • a builder scratches some new wooden flooring you’ve installed, and you need to repair it

Accidental damage insurance

In case someone accidentally damages your property or contents.

What's typically covered by accidental damage insurance?

Claims against your business for:

unexpected physical damage to your property or contents, caused by your tenants, their customers and visitors, or other members of the public

For example:

  • during a renovation job your shop property’s front window is accidentally smashed
  • your tenant is erecting a new sign and damages your property’s guttering

Read more about accidental damage insurance

Rental income protection insurance

In case damage to the property stops your tenants trading, and paying rent.

What's typically covered by rental income protection insurance?

  • damage to the property which prevents your tenants from trading, and being able to pay the rent

For example:

  • a leak in your property causes significant damage, and your tenant has to vacate their shop for eight weeks while repair works are carried out
  • there’s a break-in at your property and the yoga studio your tenant runs has to shut for two months, due to the level of vandalism caused

What you’ll need additional cover for

  • your tenants defaulting on the rent for any other reason

Read more about rental income protection

Property owners’ liability insurance

In case you’re legally responsible for injuries or property damage, as owner of the building.

What's typically covered by property owners’ liability insurance?

  • legal liability for injuries, accidental loss or damage, as the owner of the property

For example:

  • your tenant’s customer trips on a raised paving slab outside your property’s entrance, breaking their wrist
  • while locking up, your tenant is hit by a falling roof tile, which cuts their head and smashes their laptop screen

Read more about landlord liability insurance

Excess protection

In case you need to pay an insurance excess, and want to claim it back.

What's typically covered by excess protection?

  • excess payments on claims* (the excess is the part of the claim you’re responsible for paying, set out in your policy)

For example:

  • there’s a flood at your property and you need to make £750 of repairs. Ordinarily you’d be responsible for paying some of the cost yourself (the excess), but with excess protection, this could be covered

the claim amount must be more than the value of the excess

Employers’ liability insurance

In case someone working directly for your rental blames you for an injury or illness

What's typically covered by employers’ liability insurance?

  • claims for employee illness and injuries, if they’re working directly for you and your property

Employers’ liability insurance is required by law if you have people working for you directly. Without it, you could be fined up to £2,500 a day for each employee.

For example:

the gardener you’ve employed to tidy up the lawns trips and sprains her wrist while cutting down some hedging you’ve employed a full-time cleaner for your property – while working, they trip on some loose stair carpet, falling and breaking their arm

What you’ll need additional cover for

  • do you hire a self-employed cleaner, or other staff? If so, they may need their own self-employed insurance, and won’t be covered by the policy you have in place

Read more about landlords contents insurance

This content has been created for general information purposes. Make sure you have the right level of landlord insurance by checking your policy documentation for details. Read our full Terms and Conditions

How much does landlord commercial property insurance cost?

Find out how much you’ll pay by comparing prices from a range of trusted insurers. You choose what goes into your policy, so you only pay for what you need.

Prices start from £15.21 per month

Get your quotes in 7 minutes – prices are guaranteed for 30 days.

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How we work out example prices We take the highest price from the bottom 10 per cent of all our customers paying in monthly instalments (based on data from 1 January - 31 August 2021). Most customers pay more than this but some pay less.

Example commercial landlord quotes, real prices

£19.38 /month

£172.29 /year

Commercial property rented by a beauty salon

  • Commercial
  • Built between 1980 and 1989
  • 1-2 years
  • Beauty Salon
  • Based in Swansea

Landlord buildings

£150,001 to £175,000


Commercial landlords' improvements

£7,501 to £10,000


Property owners' liability

£2,000,000

£259.7 /month

£2,308.46 /year

Large commercial building with a florist and barber trading inside (landlord employs their own cleaner)

  • Commercial
  • Built between 1945 and 1979
  • Over 5 years
  • Florist & Barbers
  • Based in Manchester

Landlord buildings

£400,001 to £450,000


Commercial landlord's contents

£20,001 to £30,000


Property owners' liability

£5,000,000

How we work out example quotes These examples are real quotes from our online system (created 26/02/2021). They’re based on a range of factors, like employees and location. Your own quote will be based on what you tell us about your property. Prices may go up or down from day to day, so the prices you’re quoted may differ to the ones you see here.

What kind of excess should I expect?

An excess is an amount you pay towards any claim you make on your insurance. For example, if your excess is £250 and you make a claim worth £1000, your payout will be a maximum of £750.

Insurance coverLowest excessHighest excess
Main Building£100£2500
Fixtures & fittings£100£2500
Contents£100£2500
Accidental damage£100£500
Landlord liability£0£500

The figures above are for guidance only and any excess applying to your quote may differ. You’ll get a breakdown of the excesses for each quote when you compare with us.

How it works

  • Pick what goes into your policy

    Only pay for what you need

  • Get prices from a range of insurers

    Choose the best fit for you

  • Buy online in minutes

    Get your documents the same day

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How do I choose insurance?

Making sure you have the right type and level of landlord insurance can be the difference between getting a claim paid and having to cover the cost of an expensive accident yourself. Read our tips for guidance on what to consider when buying a policy.

What if my property is unoccupied?

If you've bought insurance for an unoccupied property, you'll be asked to confirm if the property is expected to be occupied within 60 days of the policy starting.

After this, you must contact us to confirm when the property becomes occupied – if you don't tell us, this can cause a delay in any claims being processed.

You should also be aware that you can't claim for lost rent under the loss of rent section of your insurance if your property becomes unoccupied.

What if my tenant's situation changes?

If your tenant's employment status changes – or if a new tenant moves in and their employment status is different to the previous tenant – you'll need to tell us immediately. If you don't, it could cause a delay in any claims being processed.

Are carpets and curtains covered?

The definition of 'fixtures and fittings' will depend on the insurer – sometimes, it will include laminate flooring, carpets, curtains and blinds.

It's a good idea to check the wording in your policy to understand what's covered.

Read more about contents insurance for landlords and buildings insurance.

Will tenant default insurance cover me if my property becomes unoccupied?

If your property becomes unoccupied, you won't be able to make a claim for lost rent under tenant default cover.

This also applies if your tenant falls into arrears and can't pay their rent, but you're not planning to evict them. You can only claim for lost rent under tenant default cover if you start repossession proceedings.

Read more about tenant default insurance and rent guarantee insurance.

What if I'm subletting my property?

It's vital that any tenancy agreement that you have is between you and the occupant of the property.

If the occupant of your property has a tenancy agreement with a third party (such as a letting agency or a local authority) and not you as the property owner, then your insurance policy could be cancelled and you won't be able to make any claims.

Do I need any other additional landlord covers?

You can add a range of other important covers to your landlord insurance policy, all while keeping it simple with a single premium and a single renewal date. You might consider these covers:


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Our team of UK-based insurance experts are here to help, Mon 09.00am - 05.30pm, Tues 09.00am - 05.30pm, Weds 09.00am - 05.30pm, Thurs 09.30am - 05.30pm, Fri 09.00am - 05.30pm, Sat 09.00am - 02.00pm

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FAQs

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How do claims work?

Unlike price comparison websites, we take the hassle out of claims for you. We know how important it is to get your business back on track quickly – and with a minimum of fuss. That’s why you get access to your dedicated claims any time, day or night. Call them on 0333 207 0560 or claim online. They’ll do their best to be fair and supportive. The figure below is rounded across our range of products. Our claims process may vary for different products and operates on a ‘claim by claim’ basis.

£30 million in claims paid out in 2019

Paying 80% of settled claims within 24 hours in 2019

Example claim

Having commercial landlord insurance through Simply Business has saved landlords thousands of pounds when the unexpected happened.

Alan saved more than £2,700

Alan's (not his real name) property was broken into, and there was damage to multiple doors, door frames and a gate. Luckily, Alan's insurance covered the cost of the repairs.

Insurance payout

£2,782

Covering the cost of property damage


Alan’s costs

£100

The excess amount stated in Alan’s policy terms

Chosen by 800,000 small businesses and landlords

We started out as a team of five back in 2005. We’ve grown since then with 315,000 landlord customers now trusting us to provide their insurance.

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Commercial property owners’ insurance FAQ

Whether you’re new to buying landlord insurance or you’ve been letting your property for a while, here are the answers to some commonly asked questions about commercial buildings insurance for landlords, plus other key covers. You can also check out our landlord insurance FAQs.

  • This depends on your rental, and which insurer is providing your cover. Prices start from £13.26 a month for our commercial landlord customers – we work this out by taking the highest price from the bottom 10 per cent of all our customers paying in monthly instalments (based on data from 1 January 2019 - 31 August 2021). Most customers pay more than this but some pay less.

  • Yes, we provide policies which can cover a mixture of commercial and residential tenancies. For example, your property’s ground floor might be a shop, but the first floor is a flat.

    Start a landlord insurance quote and choose the tenancy type option which fits your rental.

  • You aren’t legally required to take out a specific landlord policy, but remember – a conventional home insurance policy won’t cover you for rental activities, and a mortgage lender will usually demand you have specific landlord cover in place, before you let your property.

    Popular covers include property owners’ liability and contents insurance, for accidents on your property, plus buildings cover to protect the property itself.

  • As we’ve outlined above, there’s currently no legal obligation to take out a dedicated landlord insurance policy. However, a home insurance policy won’t cover you for the specific risks you and your tenants face, and a mortgage lender will usually require you to have buy-to-let insurance in place too, before renting out your property.

We create this content for general information purposes and it should not be taken as advice. Always check policy documentation for details and seek professional advice. Read our full Terms and Conditions

Helpful articles for commercial landlords

Tables and chairs outside a resturant on the pavement

7 February 2017 • 2-minute read

Letting commercial properties: what are my responsibilites?

Commercial landlord insurance

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