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Unoccupied Property Insurance
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If you own a property, there may be times when it stands empty for a number of consecutive days which could invalidate or severely restrict the cover on your home insurance.
In cases like this, you may typically need unoccupied property insurance (also known as empty property cover) to insure that your home is still protected against unexpected events that cause loss or damage such as floods, fire, theft etc.
When is a property empty?
There are various circumstances in which a property can become unoccupied or empty, such as:
- you go on an extended holiday or business trip and your home is left empty;
- you are a landlord with a let property that is experiencing a period of void;
- the property is undergoing significant renovation, alteration or extension;
- you have a probate policy that is empty while the paperwork gets sorted;
- where you have moved to a new home but your old houee is still awaiting sale;
- and so on.
It is also important to note that a property can be classed as empty, even if it is furnished.
Many people get a shock when they find out their insurance falls invalid as a result of their property standing empty.
How long must a property be empty before my home insurance becomes invalid or restricted.
The majority of home insurers are happy to cover unoccupied property for a short period of time (typically up to 30-45 consecutive days depending on the insurer) with no alteration to the policy.
As part of your insurance contract with your provider, however, you may find you are obliged to heat the property and / or have regular, logged checks made by an authorised person in your absence. This log of checks may be requested in the event that you make a claim.
Once this period of time has been exceeded, insurers often dramatically reduce cover or withdraw it altogether. There are a few insurers that will continue with full cover but again these are subject to terms and conditions.
That is why empty property cover exists and why, if you have an empty property, you may wish to consider a specialist unoccupied insurance policy.
We can help you access the most cost-effective and appropriate cover for your needs whether the property is your home or you are a landlord.
We can provide landlords insurance for property that is awaiting an occupant and depending on the anticipated length of unoccupancy we may recommend a landlords insurance or an unoccupied insurance policy.
What else do I need to know?
As with any type of insurance policy, there will be terms, conditions and exclusions that you need to be mindful of. These could relate to your obligations when the property is empty (as touched on above) as well as circumstances that may not be covered. These will all be disclosed within your policy documents.
To find out more about unoccupied property insurance, please feel free to get in touch. One of our team will be very happy to help you.