IF you leave your property empty for more than 30 days then you will need unoccupied insurance and this is how to get it at the lowest cost possible.
Depending on the vacant property you own, your insurance could cost very similar to a normal policy, a small amount more or a huge amount more. So the first thing you can do is remove as much risk as possible.
If you have a holiday home in Beirut with £250,000 of contents, including all the latest gadgets, TVs, etc. and you are only there for a week a year but leave without locking the doors and placing an advert that you will be gone and please don’t steal anything, then your property is a pretty big risk. The amount you pay for insurance on this property would be a lot more than the next example.
A second home on the Cornwall coast in a tiny hamlet where everyone knows each other and are part of a neighbourhood watch scheme is a much safer risk. Your property is vacant but you have alerted the neighbours and use a maintained alarm system that plugs into the local police and gets a response within 10-minutes. On top of that you have skeleton possessions in the property worth around £3000 in total and there are approved locks on all windows and doors.
It is very clear in this second case that the cost of empty property insurance will be dramatically cheaper than the initial Beirut holiday home. That quite extremely displays the difference you personally can make. It is also common sense.
So the message here is do all you can to reduce the risk at the vacant property before getting your insurance. Some people will own flats in London and inner cities but that doesn’t mean high risk all the time – how you use locks, alarms and neighbourhood watch schemes will all affect the price you pay for insurance.
Make sure you are part of a neighbourhood watch if you can. Get approved locks on every possible entrance or exit to your property. Reduce the value of your contents to what you need and never advertise the fact the property is empty – big bundles of post stacking up etc.
Do all of this and then go to The Property Insurer and get a specialist broker to quote for your unoccupied insurance. That’s the way to get it is a cheap as possible. And maybe avoid a holiday home in Beirut…
The Property Insurer