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EBM RentCover focuses on educating landlords

For property owners, putting your largest asset in the hands of a tenant who you’ve never met and know little about can be a risky business – and EBM is trying to get the word out.

EBM RentCover Managing Director of Sharon Fox-Slater said the company has recently rebranded and she was excited to continue to grow what is already a strong brand with more education on the complexities of landlord insurance.

“Our brand has been around for more than 40 years and during that time it has been largely untouched,” Ms Fox-Slater said. “While our business and offering has evolved, our look and feel has remained the same. We made the decision to transform our brand to better reflect our culture and values, and our desire to work closely with clients to educate them about the risks that come with owning an investment property.

She said the digital transformation of society also meant it was necessary for their brand to reinvent itself, and they aimed to utilise social media and online networking sites to better communicate with, and educate, their clients.

“A significant part of our re-brand was the development of an online Info Centre which works to guide clients through the maze of insurance jargon so they can find the most suitable insurance for an investment property,” Ms Fox-Slater explained.

“Our Info Centre includes articles about anything and everything related to insurance, including the answers to such questions as: Could you be managing a drug lab? or what policy is best for holiday lets?”

Insurance is not an easy industry to get your head around. It is often bound by complex laws and regulations and appears to only offer cover in specific circumstances which can be quickly undone by technicalities. That is why Ms Fox-Slater believes education is crucial for both property managers and individuals.

“Education is an important part of the work we do to ensure clients choose the right policy to best protect their property and respond correctly in times of disaster,” she said.

“A home or property is oftentimes a person’s biggest financial asset, so we want to make sure clients are educated to have the right policy in place should something go wrong.

“Not only do we educate clients about the value of products and services that benefit them, but we educate about the insurance industry as a whole – an industry which is constantly misunderstood. People don’t comprehend how far-reaching and influential insurance really is. But, without insurance the world wouldn’t operate as we know it – planes wouldn’t fly, ships wouldn’t sail, buildings wouldn’t be built – because no one would be brave enough to take any risks. The only way to combat misconceptions is to educate people about the value of insurance and how it impacts investments.”

One of the big mistakes Ms Fox-Slater sees landlords making on a consistent basis is being under-insured, leaving them at risk of not only losing rental income but potentially putting their asset at risk.

“Underinsurance is rife among Aussie property owners, landlords and tenants. In fact, according to the Insurance Council of Australia, eight in 10 homeowners and renters are insured for less than their home and contents would cost to replace, or they have no insurance at all,” she said. “We want to make sure our clients have the right cover in place when things go wrong and we achieve this by educating them to understand that insurers only fully respond to a loss when the right type and amount of cover has been selected.”

EBM will continue to work with clients to improve the process of understanding landlord’s insurance by giving them all the tools they’ll need online.

“We empower clients with the knowledge needed to choose the most suitable protection for an investment property,” Ms Fox-Slater said.

“We achieve this by developing and deploying educational content, including through our Info Centre – an online news hub which guides clients through the maze of insurance jargon.

“We also invest in innovative technologies that put clients in control. Our clients have access to our exclusive RCPLive system – an easy-to-use online portal that enhances the customer experience by offering a centralised platform for overseeing all insurance needs. This means they are easily able to apply, manage and claim online.”

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Rowan Crosby

Rowan Crosby is a freelance journalist specialising in finance and real estate.