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Gite fine print says we have to provide insurance? Where in the world do you buy this??

Ok. Last minute panic.

We booked our gite in Normandy for June 4-11, paid the deposit BACK IN OCTOBER 2018, and it's all paid for at this point. We're leaving in 5 days for Paris, then on to the gite. The contract is in French, so of course I didn't peruse the fine print well enough, and I only just literally stumbled on the fact that the gite requires the renters (us) to provide personal liability insurance for the rental. So if we accidentally burn the place down trying to make crepes, they're covered.

Um..What?

I was up all night researching this and yes, it appears to be common, but since we have already purchased extra car rental insurance AND travel medical insurance, we literally only need some sort of personal liability coverage for the rental for a week.

So far all of my searches for purchasing this insurance are coming up blank. One company requires you to buy the insurance within 10 days of booking the rental (too late for that now). Our homeowners' insurance in the U.S. doesn't cover French cottage rental liability. insuremytrip.com doesn't offer any rental coverage for our situation (not sure why, but the quote says 'sorry, nothing available'). AIG puts you on hold for an eternity, so I'm waiting on that.

Has anyone purchased this? If so, where?

Starting to panic a little. The last thing I want is to show up at a rental and have them say "Ce n'est pas possible sans les assurances, byeee".

Posted by
7657 posts

Petite probleme, non? Hopefully this won’t be an issue. Having rented several gites, mostly thru Gites de France or HomeAway, we’ve never encountered a requirement for self-covered liability insurance. Or maybe it was required and we missed that stipulation, but it never came up before, during, or after arriving, staying, and departing the gites.

Maybe we were just lucky, and no crepes or buildings were damaged in the process. I wonder if it’s a legal technicality, or if the people are going to want to see your papers before showing you how the shower works, and handing over the keys? Our last gite rental was 3 years ago, and maybe things are different now. Just so you’re covered and meet the requirements, even if your own homeowner’s policy doesn’t provide coverage, would your insurance agent have any advice, or could a shirt-term separate policy be available through them? Hope it all works out - bon chance!

Posted by
33 posts

Thanks Cyn!

I have literally just talked to/chatted with/emailed several traveler's insurance companies, and NONE of them has anything for coverage of rental property for us as the renters. The only one that offers it, told me that I would have had to buy their policy within 10 days of booking the rental. Lord...

This is through Gites de France, and the fine print literally just says "le client est tenu d'etre assuré par un contrat d'assurance type villégiature pour ces différents risques."

Posted by
7657 posts

Do you, by any chance, have an Alliance Francaise near you? They might have some recommendations.

Maybe another person on this Forum will have a solution - sorry I can’t offer more than “we got by without having a liability policy many times in the past.”

Posted by
33 posts

Hi Cyn,

I don't think we do, but I'll check. So far literally nothing is working, in terms of searching the internet for personal liability insurance for holiday rentals.

Posted by
23472 posts

We have encountered that requirement in the US. It is generally an extension of your current homeowners liability policy. I think it is call "named insurer." Check with your homeowners insurance. Question is would it cover a European rental or would a personal liability policy cover that situation. Because of the nature of my prior work I continue to carry a 2M personal liability policy that works in this situation.

Opps -- missed the part about your homeowners insurance. Try the liability. Mine covers me where ever I go.

Posted by
10364 posts

We have had this requirement when using French agencies. We purchased through the rental agency for 10 or 20 euros. Contact Gites de France. They probably have an assurance they recommend or offer. Note that you’ll be dealing with a French company and signing a French contract.

Posted by
33 posts

Thanks everyone!

I will try and contact Gites de France directly. No searching the internet is turning up ANYthing that covers liability for holiday rentals with traveler's insurance. Ugh

I'll let you all know what I find out.

Posted by
33 posts

HOLY HECK that was interesting. My homeowner's insurance doesn't even know what I'm talking about, so...

Ok, for anyone future searching this. I FOUND IT here: www.french-furnished-insurance.com

You enter your dates, address, traveler's names and cost, and it covers everything IN FRENCH, for the French "assurance villégiature" requirement. It costs me 19.75 euros.

The main CAVEAT is that if you don't purchase this insurance within 10 days of reserving your rental, the part about cancellation and trip interruption is null and void, (which is fine, we're not out much on that end if we can't get to the gite).

Good luck future searchers. This wasn't easy to find. Whew!

Posted by
1882 posts

Thank you so much for letting us know the solution, I will bookmark this discussion for future reference. Don't you just hate last minute panic? Now enjoy the trip.

Posted by
33 posts

Thanks Laurie,

I basically thought I was going to have a stroke, haha. I'm SO glad I was able to sort it out, and yes, definitely share this with anyone who needs it. I can't imagine showing up and having them say "So, may I see your insurance please?"

faints

Posted by
2916 posts

We've rented gites in France through Gites de France for about 30 years, and never encountered the insurance issue. However, looking at my most recent rental (earlier this month), I see the language in the contract that the OP is referring to. I also know that whenever I've rented through Gites de France, there's been an option for insurance, which I believed was cancellation insurance (about 15 euros) and which I've always turned down because I had no interest in that. I now think that maybe that's been the type of insurance that the OP is referring to. I'll find out next year, and if so, I'll probably take it.