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Unoccupied property home insurance

If you’re away on vacation or thinking of selling the house, here’s how to protect your property when it’s not being used

What is the definition of unoccupied home insurance?

Unoccupied property insurance protects the homeowner when the house is vacant for a longer period than your normal policy allow. It is only covered for your home that is vacant for at least 60 days and if something happens beyond the 60-day period, you’ll be protected.

If your house is unoccupied for a long time and you are unable to access your home, the likelihood of theft increase. Unoccupied homes also carry the chance of structural damage, for instance when a pipe breaks and no one is there to take care of repairs The consequences may be even more devastating.

Home insurance for unoccupied homes is not included in a standard home insurance policy, which means you’ll have to purchase an add-on policy or policy separately.

What is the best time to get an insurance policy for your home that is not in use?

There are some scenarios that could lead you to require empty property insurance. This includes:

In the case of construction work that requires the removal of

Are you waiting for the sale of your property to close

Travelling for a holiday or for a prolonged period

It’s a second home or a holiday home that which you would not normally live in.

You’re a landlord , and your property is shared between tenants.

We’d strongly suggest that you not be a risk and leave your home without insurance when it’s not used for a prolonged duration of time. It’s best to confirm with your insurance company to determine if you’ll be covered beyond the specified duration and to what extent. If you don’t have enough coverage for you, you should consider non-occupied insurance for your property.

What do unoccupied home insurance policies will cover?

If you’re considering taking out insurance for your home that is not occupied You should look for an insurance policy that covers:

Fire, flood, or storm destruction: If a natural disaster strikes during your absence

Water or oil escape If a pipe explodes or leaks in the home

Theft or attempted theft: If someone breaks into or attempts to break into your house and steals your possessions

Criminal damage is done in your absence, you are responsible for the damage.

Legal costs You must pay legal fees to removal of squatters from your property, for the trespassers, or for identity theft

The insurance for Public Liability: If the damage is caused by property you are responsible for, such as in the event that a roofing tile gets damaged by a fall and damages the window of a car

Insurance policies vary among providers, which means they may not all offer the same amount of protection. Check the policy’s documents carefully before purchasing.

What’s not covered by the insurance on homes not occupied?

Your insurance provider for your home might not cover claims for these reasons

Unforced entry The act of leaving your windows and doors open or unlocked is a guaranteed way to invalidate an insurance policy for your home since squatters and thieves could gain access to your home without requiring access.

Major projects: Some insurance companies may even deny coverage for the consequences of major construction projects, such as the extension of or repairs made to the structure of your home.

Contractors You’ve hired contractors to repair your house while it’s not in use it could be that you aren’t protected from any damages they cause. Contractors need to have their own insurance in place to protect against the damages.

Who can unoccupied house insurance be used for?

There are a variety of reasons homes may be unoccupied for a short period. For instance, your home could be vacant if:

The house is up for sale after you’ve moved into your new house

It’s not your primary place for residence. It’s it’s a vacation home or one that you’ve been given

You’ve bought it recently, but don’t think of making the move for a few months.

You’re on the road for a long time

You’re a landlord , and you’re in the middle of a dispute with tenants

You’ve been referred to long-term medical treatment

The building is currently being renovated and isn’t safe for people to reside in.

You’re waiting for an order for probate.

What is the cost of unoccupied house insurance cost?

The price of insurance coverage for unoccupied houses can differ between different the policies and providers. Insurance companies consider factors such as:

Value of property: High-priced items and properties cost more to repair or replace and you’ll need to spend more money to pay for them.

Location of the property Location of the property: If your home is located in a location with high crime rates, or has a high likelihood of flooding, then the cost of insurance for your property will increase.

Security for your property: Enhancing the security of your home even when it’s not in use can help stop the possibility of burglaries

Maintenance on your property: Making sure the pipes in your home are well-insulated in winter will stop the water that escapes from your home from damaging your property – the results of which could be serious when left unattended

Coverage level Level of cover: The more additional policies you buy and the more extensive the level of coverage you purchase the more you’ll be paying in the form of premiums.

How long will your home going to remain vacant?

Although standard home insurance typically has a term of a year but homes that aren’t occupied don’t necessarily stay vacant for more than twelve months. This is the reason why insurers typically offer home insurance that is unoccupied on policies that last for three, nine, or twelve months.

If you’re thinking of being traveling for a longer period, or when your absence is unexpected it is possible to extend your insurance also. For instance, if you’re in a foreign country for your vacation and your flights are cancelled or your home sale has taken longer than scheduled.

What happens if it is not possible to notify your provider that your house is empty?

The risk of invalidating your insurance coverage for home if you are required to make an insurance claim but do not inform your insurance provider that your house is not occupied for longer than the period specified in the policy’s details.

Claiming on unoccupied home insurance

It is important to determine if your insurance provider has any specific rules regarding how you can submit a claim. For example, if you require to call them right away or if you must make a police report.

There are other things you need to think about prior to making a claim:

No-claims bonus: Many insurers give discounts on their premiums when you’ve not claimed for a long period of time, however, if you make an application, you’ll forfeit this benefit, meaning that your premiums could rise.

Excess: The excess is the amount you have to pay towards an insurance claim before the insurer takes over the remainder of the cost. It’s not cheap in certain circumstances therefore it’s worth considering whether it’s more cost-effective to hold onto your no-claims bonus , and then take on the cost of the damage yourself.