Who needs unoccupied property insurance and why would I need it?
Do you travel for business and are away for long periods of time? Have you a building which you haven’t managed to let and it is sitting vacant? Has your tenant just moved out of your flat or house? Has your relative become in need of nursing or residential care and isn’t likely to be home for some time?
There are many reasons a property can become unoccupied – but if you answered ‘yes’ to any of the questions above, you need to take a look at your current insurance policy and see if you need to replace it or add unoccupied property insurance to it.
What is unoccupied property insurance?
Insurance companies think that occupied properties are less risky. Someone is there most days checking that nothing bad is happening, like a burst pipe or a broken window. They assume if a building is in use it is generally secure, warm and maintained – so there is less likelihood of something going wrong. Unoccupied buildings on the other hand are considered more likely to become vandalised. If something goes wrong it may take longer for this to be discovered, which may make the damage worse. Insurance companies therefore ask you to take out additional cover or a separate policy if you are leaving your property unoccupied.
Would my current policy not still work?
Many people don’t even think about how long their building is left unoccupied and they therefore don’t realise that most household and landlord insurance policies have a clause stating how long the property can be left unoccupied before the policy becomes invalid. This is often 30 days – so that six week trip around the world or a two month stay in hospital can be enough to make your household insurance policy lapse.
So what should I do if I know I will be leaving my home for a time?
The first thing to do is to check the small print in your current policy. It should give you clear information on any exclusions to your cover if your premises are empty and it should also say how long you can leave your property empty. If you know you are going to exceed this limit, then contact your insurance provider and chat to them about whether they offer extended cover while your property is empty. Don’t leave it too late – you don’t want to be caught without cover!
Where do I buy Unoccupied Property Insurance from?
At property insurance centre we have access to over 40 of the leading insurance underwriters and due to specialising in this type of insurance we have access to rates that our competitors do not. Call us today on 0800 085 3761 for a quote within 5 minutes.