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ICA warns on Airbnb cover gap as holidays loom

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People who rent their homes via short-stay websites such as Airbnb may not be covered for damage, the Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) warns.

More than 140,000 properties will be listed for short-term rental during the holidays, and most insurers regard this as commercial use of the property, because the likelihood of damage increases.

Claims incurred while a property is rented may be declined, ICA says.

Host protection insurance offered by rental platforms does not cover personal property or public liability in shared areas.

Irreplaceable items should be removed and owners should check if short stays are allowed under strata and council rules and tenancy agreements, ICA says.

A short-term landlord insurance policy can cover the property if it is professionally managed.