Tenant dog caused fire-Insurance? Deductible?

4 Replies

Rental is located in Albuquerque New Mexico 

So my tenant was not home and her dog broke out of the kennel and dragged things all over the house including a couch cushion over the gas floor furnace. Neighbor heard the alarm saw smoke and Called fire department.   

Small fire-was easily put out-damage to wood floor-sub floor and furnace. Minor damage to one wall right next to the furnace.  They pulled the gas meter and fire captain explained what happened and that report will say tenant is at fault-accident.

Thankfully no one was injured not even the dog 

I filed a claim with my insurance  and tenant has renters insurance with same insurance company as me-State Farm she also filed claim of some sort or notified them. 

Lease states “if any required repair is caused by the negligence of the tenant or tenants guests the tenant will be fully responsible for the cost of repair/and or replacement needed“ 

Should this be claimed on my insurance? 

Does the tenant have to pay the deductible? 

I have never filed a claim against my homeowners insurance for a rental or my own homes so I am pretty clueless about the process or any pitfalls. 

Appreciate any advice or information you can offer.

Thank you, 


When we had a tenant-caused kitchen fire, we filed the claim with our insurance carrier, and they subrogated to the tenant's policy.  Eventually, I received a check for the deductible.  

This situation will make a great story for the book you'll write about your landlord adventures!

Glad no one was hurt.

A month ago I had a fire that destroyed 2 units (unfortunately both had been rehabbed in the previous 4 years - It could not have happened to our units that had not yet been rehabbed).  The insurance report blamed the tenant of one of the units.

Our lease mandates the tenants have renters insurance but neither tenant had maintained their renters insurance.  The tenant that caused the fire has nothing to go after and no insurance.  They lost most of their property and their home (we are not offering to lease to them when the units are rebuilt).  They (family of 5 plus 2 dogs and 2 cats) currently moved in with family, so they are not homeless.  Certainly not a good way for them to start the holiday season, but they needed to have renter insurance.  In addition, they will find it very challenging to find any home in their budget that will take the family and their animals.

I believe the other tenant is planning on staying with us even though the unit may not be ready for >6 months.  

So we will be stuck paying our deductible even though our lease mandates tenant insurance.

Seeing that both the tenant and you are by the same insurer, it will be interesting how this works out.  I suspect if your insurer was different than the tenant's insurer that your insurer would go after the other insurer for costs.

To be safe/conservative you should assume you will get stuck paying the deductible and be pleasantly surprised if the deductible is ever refunded.

Good luck

If I do not receive the deductible back from the tenants insurance can I use the security deposit to recover the costs of it? Between the regular deposit and pet deposit I have $1,350 deposits from the tenant and my deductible is $1,000

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