Our tenant just told me there was a small kitchen fire in our single family rental. (Sacramento CA.) Our homeowners insurance has a 3500$ deductible. From looking at the pictures I think it needs a new kitchen cabinet and microwave. Fire department said there was no damage in the attic. The gas stove is probably still functional.
We want to sell some rentals next year and the question is?
Should we give them the total bill at once or increase the rent and see whether they want to stay? If they stay we could increase the other rental rates until someone leaves then sell that one.
Did you require that they have renters insurance?
No. We didn't require renters insurance. My insurance agent said a renter's insurance policy with a 500 deductible would have covered the fire damage.
As they didn't have rental insurance, I would expect them to pay the deductible. Work out a plan with them, but come lease renewal, I am betting your insurance will go up, so I would increase the rent to cover that and require them to get insurance.
@Hugo G. Just give them a $3500 bill since they caused the fire. Assuming your lease says something about this issue.
Sorry to hear about the fire in your investment property. You learn from each situation as you progress in your rental business. Always get a rental insurance with any new leases or renewals. See what the cost would be to remedy if it will be cheaper than you deductible. Either ways, you can set up a payment plan for you tenant to pay the outstanding bills, or take some loss as part of doing business. REMEMBER!!! Get Rental insurance moving forward.
@Hugo G. I’d agree w the others, take this as a lesson learned and see what you can do about your tenant paying that deductible and talk to your insurance about the amount you can expect to see your Bill go up, if it eats your cash flow and your plan is to sell next year anyway this may be a chance to get this kitchen “remodeled” and hit the market
We plan to replace the microwave ($250.00), clean the walls and ceiling ($200.00), add some paint and primer ($200.00) and replace an under counter light ($50.00). While I'm there I plan to vent the kitchen cooking smells through the microwave and out the wall.
The builder put solar panels on the roof and wouldn't vent it when we bought it. Now is a good time for that upgrade and a new lease (with renter's insurance).
I flip fire damaged properties and own a fire damage restoration company. I highly suspect that you will be able to repair the damage PROPERLY for anywhere close to that amount. ESPECIALLY considering that you need to do smoke/odor mitigation throughout the same air compartment.