How To: Intentional Vandalism by Tenants Claim

Holes in walls…   Ripped carpet…   Broken oven…   Smashed vanity top…  Broken windows…   Graffiti on walls…

Sadly, not all tenants are created equal and as a rental property owner you could experience a tenant intentionally damaging your rental property.  If this happens to you, don’t despair, your Initio landlord insurance policy covers deliberate damage by tenants.

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Take photos of the damage.
  2. Get a quote to repair any damage.
  3. Log-in to your dashboard on the initio website and click on ‘Make a Claim’. Fill in the form and attach your photos and quotes.
  4. We’ll email or call you within one business day.

We must bear in mind that insurance is designed to help recover from unexpected sudden and accidental losses.  Rental insurance is not in place to cover the costs of maintenance, results of poor property management or minor accidental losses that one might expect as a landlord.

With all insurance claims, an excess is allocated to each incident, meaning one or many excesses could apply to damage in a rental property.

For this reason, we review recent tenancy inspection documents and photos, along with photos of the damage.  These two pieces of information will help us work out if any or all of the damage occurred in one incident, or over a period of time on numerous occasions.  Examples of these are as follows:

1. Damage occurs in one incident:

During a party cigarette butts burn the carpet, rowdy party goers put holes in the walls and smash windows during a fight and someone crashes their car into the front fence.

Claim is for carpet, builder, plasterer, painter, glazier and fencer.  Total $4,700

  • Recent tenancy inspections show that the property was in good condition before the party.
  • Neighbours are able to confirm the party occurrence.

Initio cash settles the quoted amount less one excess, so that repairs can be completed at a suitable time for the landlord (may be between the party goers moving out and new tenants moving in).

2. Damage occurs over a period of time:

At a three monthly property inspection damage is found:

  • Toilet door has been opened too hard and the handle has gone through the wall
  • Carpet in the master bedroom has been stained with hair dye
  • Bathroom mirror has been cracked in the corner
  • Toddler has drawn on the hallway wall with a permanent marker
  • Curtains are missing in three bedrooms

It’s impossible to pin all of the damage on one incident.  Accordingly, an excess is applied to each area of damage and because none of the repairs are over the excess, there is no insurance claim.


  • Will Initio send an assessor?

If there is significant damage to your home, then we can get an assessor to go to site; however, if the damage is likely to be under $5,000 then we will probably be happy to proceed based on photographs of the damage and formal written quotations.

  • What is my excess?

This amount is chosen by you when you buy the insurance, if you can’t remember, just check your policy schedule (you’ll find this document on your dashboard).

  • Can I use my own repairer / supplier or do Initio have approved companies that I must use?

You can use any repairer or supplier you like.  So long as their costs are reasonable and you are happy with the standard of work then we’re happy.

“All claims are different and they are assessed on their own merits and facts. The above does not imply a guaranteed approach to all such claims”

Deliberate damage example