What Is Short-Term Rental Insurance?

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Updated: May 22, 2024

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Short-term rental insurance protects against issues that may arise when renting out your property on platforms like Airbnb or Vrbo. With guests coming and going, the risk of damage or liability claims increases — but with this specialized insurance, you get protection against the cost of property damage or guest injuries. Whether you’re a seasoned host or a newcomer to the short-term rental scene, this insurance is essential for anyone looking to safeguard their property and investment in the ever-growing vacation rental industry.

What Is Short-Term Rental Insurance?

Short-term renters insurance, also known as vacation rental insurance or home-sharing insurance, is designed to protect property owners who rent out their properties for brief periods of time. Unlike standard home insurance policies, this specialized coverage safeguards against property damage caused by guests during their stay and includes liability coverage if a visitor is injured on the premises.

With guests using unfamiliar spaces, the risks of accidents or damages are higher, making this insurance a crucial part of your hosting strategy. After all, short-term rental insurance is not just a safety net; it's a responsible way to manage your property, ensuring that both you and your guests have peace of mind during the rental period.

Short Term Rental Insurance Coverage

Short-term rental insurance covers the unique risks associated with short-term rentals, such as property damage or the liabilities that hosting guests bring. Typically, insurance for short-term rentals covers the following:

  • Property damage protection: Covers damage caused by guests during their stay.
  • Liability coverage: Includes legal liability protection if a visitor is injured.
  • Loss-of-use coverage: May be required for landlords relying on rental payments as primary income.

If you host on Airbnb or Vrbo, you may be able to get short-term rental insurance coverage from the platform.

AirCover: Vacation Rental Insurance From Airbnb

AirCover, provided by Airbnb, is a free specialized protection program offering hosts top-to-bottom property coverage. With $3 million in damage protection, it encompasses various specialized protections, including restoration or replacement of damaged art or valuables, protection for cars and boats parked or stored at the property, repair of pet damage, compensation for lost income due to guest damage and reimbursement for deep cleaning services.

It also includes $1 million in liability insurance for instances where guests might get hurt, or their belongings are damaged or stolen. Always included and free for hosts, AirCover is available exclusively on Airbnb, providing hosts with the confidence and security they need.

$1 Million Liability Insurance: Vacation Rental Insurance From Vrbo

With Vrbo's $1M Liability Insurance, owners and property managers are protected for all stays booked online through the Vrbo checkout. The $1 million in liability coverage protects you against traveler injury and property damage claims.

This coverage is available at no additional cost and is global in scope, meaning it applies no matter where the property is located. It also works with existing liability policies, providing added protection and peace of mind.

Short-Term Rental Insurance vs. Landlord Insurance

While both short-term and landlord insurance cover property damage and liability — the difference lies in the length or type of stay. Short-term rental insurance caters to temporary stays and paying guests, while landlord insurance covers long-term rentals that last year-round. The table below shows a quick overview of short-term and landlord insurance.

Short-Term Rental Insurance
Landlord Insurance

Coverage type

Temporary rentals (e.g. a few days to a few weeks)

Long-term rentals (e.g. a few months to years)

Guest coverage

Paying guests

Non-paying visitors (e.g. family, friends)

Lost rental income

Yes, but limited and due to specific events

Yes, with broader coverage

Liability protection



Additional rider



Overall, short-term rental insurance is best if you plan to rent your property for just a short period to paying guests — whether it’s through a friend or a platform like Airbnb. On the other hand, landlord insurance is a good idea if you plan to lease your property for a longer period to a tenant looking to settle down.


Renting out a property for short periods offers a unique opportunity to generate income, but it also comes with its own set of risks and responsibilities. Our frequently asked questions can help you navigate the other complexities of short-term rental insurance and understand this vital aspect of property management.

Is vacation rental insurance worth it?
Does homeowners insurance cover short term rentals?

About Mark Fitzpatrick

Mark Fitzpatrick headshot

Mark Fitzpatrick has analyzed the property and casualty insurance market for over five years, conducting original research and creating personalized content for every kind of buyer. Currently, he leads P&C insurance content production at MoneyGeek. Fitzpatrick has been quoted in several insurance-related publications, including CNBC, NBC News and Mashable.

Fitzpatrick earned a master’s degree in economics and international relations from Johns Hopkins University and a bachelor’s degree from Boston College. He is passionate about using his knowledge of economics and insurance to bring transparency around financial topics and help others feel confident in their money moves.