What is unoccupied property insurance?

Whether you are inheriting a property, selling a home or just taking an extended period away, there’s an abundance of reasons as to why you may leave a property vacant. But to ensure your own financial well-being – and the safety and security of your property – it is crucial to understand and invest in the appropriate insurance.

Insurance companies are expert in their products and working with their clients’ disasters is a daily occurrence for them. However, we all, as insurance buyers, hope disaster will never affect us. There is an enormous disparity of experience – the insurer knows what can go wrong because they experience it vicariously through their millions of clients every day, but most insurance clients very rarely, and hopefully never, experience an insurable disaster.

This is where KGJ steps in. As an experienced insurance broker, we bridge that knowledge gap – helping clients to understand the benefits, risks, pitfalls and gotchas of the insurance industry. 

Unoccupied property insurance is a unique type of policy that’s designed to provide financial protection for owners of unoccupied buildings. The cover for insuring unoccupied properties fluctuates from insurance provider to insurance provider, with most shrouded in hidden costs and poor policy cover that will leave you more at risk.

Here at KGJ Insurance, we break the traditional mould and offer confidential, professional and independent unoccupied property insurance across the UK. We specialise in providing insurance policies that keep you and your interests at the centre of everything that we do. Learn the inside story on what unoccupied property insurance is below.

What can unoccupied property insurance cover?

Often referred to as vacant property insurance, it covers a wide array of risks that may arise from having an unoccupied building that often includes:

  • Loss or damage to the property due to vandalism.
  • Storm, flood or fire damage caused by natural disasters.
  • Water damage from burst pipes and leaks.
  • Public or property owners’ liability insurance to cover damages by, for example, falling roof tiles hitting public or private property.
  • Protection from theft and attempted break-ins.
  • Coverage of other legal expenses and fees.

However, it is encouraged to find a cover that also considers other unanticipated factors. Consider a policy that also typically provides coverage for the contents of unoccupied buildings and any additional costs associated with making repairs or restoring the building, if needed.

How long does insurance for a vacant property last?

Vacant property insurance differs from standard home insurance policies And can be arranged annually or for short periods depending on your demands and needs. With traditional home insurance, the longest you can leave a property unoccupied is generally 30 days, whereas our unoccupied property insurance can be arranged for 12 months with the option to renew if required.

That length of time can vary drastically, depending on your needs. Each policy can be tailored to suit you, your circumstances and your property.

Delving deeper into the minutiae of the policies, insurance for an unoccupied property can be broken down into two categories – commercial and residential. With KGJ Insurance, we take the time to talk you through all the relevant information that you need regarding your policy, whether over the phone, by email or in person.

 Vacant commercial property insurance provides coverage for businesses with unoccupied premises while residential unoccupied property insurance covers homes that are unoccupied but still owned by the owner.

How long can you leave a property unoccupied?

The length of time you can leave a property unoccupied will depend on the terms and conditions of your unoccupied property insurance policy. Generally, unoccupied property policies are valid from 60 days or less to 12 months; however, this all depends on your policy and your provider.

Who often needs insurance for a vacant property?

Without suitable coverage, any damage sustained while your property remains unoccupied could leave you financially vulnerable. There are several reasons why people may need this type of insurance:

  • The owner has passed away.
  • Owners going into care homes.
  • Owners who have recently purchased an investment or rental property but have yet to find tenants.
  • Tenant’s lease has ended with no new tenants in sight.
  • Renovations or repairs are going on that make inhabiting the property difficult.
  • Property owners who often find themselves away from their home due to business trips or personal travel commitments.
  • Homeowners who are relocating temporarily due to job changes or family commitments.
  • Holiday homes that remain vacant when the owner isn’t using them.

Owning a vacant property comes with its share of risks, and insurance is an important part of mitigating those risks. Vacant property insurance is a specialised type of homeowners insurance coverage specifically designed to protect the owners of properties that are unoccupied or temporarily uninhabited for more than 30 days in succession.

The benefits of insuring unoccupied properties

As with any insurance policy, there comes an array of benefits associated with vacant property insurance. Ultimately, it is designed to help protect your home or business financially if something were to happen during its period of vacancy.

In addition, insurance on a vacant property can efficiently provide additional coverage for the contents of the unoccupied building, such as furniture, appliances, plumbing and electrical wiring. Getting the correct insurance policy can be especially useful if you are leasing out your unoccupied premises to tenants or storing valuable items while it is vacant.

On the other hand, however, unoccupied property insurance often has some drawbacks too; it is typically more expensive than standard policies due to the increased risk of damage or theft when a property is unoccupied. Furthermore, unoccupied property policies typically have a shorter term length than regular policies resulting in you needing to renew the policy on a more regular basis if you want continuous coverage for your property.

Is unoccupied home insurance worth it?

Insuring unoccupied properties is a worthwhile investment as it helps to protect your home or business financially if something were to happen during its period of vacancy.

Given the ever-changing and dynamic economic landscape we find ourselves in, guaranteeing that level of protection within the fragility of the global market with efficacious vacant property insurance will provide a different layer of financial protection. It helpfully provides peace of mind for the owner of the property, safe in the knowledge that you have that financial protection in the event of an accident or unexpected event that is beyond your control.

At KGJ, our distinguished unoccupied property insurance includes:

  1. Options to restrict the cover in return for a lower premium.
  2. Flexible cover periods, from 30 days to 3, 6 or 12 Months.
  3. Buildings cover with the option to include contents if required.
  4. 0% interest free instalments on annual policies.
  5. Legal Liability cover ranging from one, two or five million.

Prominent Unoccupied property insurance providers

Every one of our policies is seen as an investment from KGJ into you, your home or business and what you represent. We’re insurance brokers that are here to help and protect you with our tailored unoccupied property insurance coverage.

We are always on the side of the client – fully independent – we are beholden to no insurance company – and with over 50 years of experience, have the expertise and knowledge to protect and secure you and your property.

At KGJ Insurance, we are a family-owned establishment supporting those across the UK. Get in touch with us today; we take the time to understand your financial needs, no matter how complicated and overwhelming they may feel. We’ll help you organise your finances so you can focus on the more important things in life.

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