What is unoccupied property insurance?
Unoccupied property insurance is designed to insure a premises against various risks whilst it is empty.
Available as either a short term or long term policy. Empty property cover is often purchased whilst its owner awaits a new tenant, a sale or whilst it is renovated.
Do I need empty property insurance?
If you are responsible for an unoccupied property, then yes, you do require a policy to cover it. Standard building insurance is not sufficient for vacant premises and will not cover any unoccupied premises.
When it comes to vacant premises, there are different risks involved such as theft or fire. These risks are typically less prevalent in occupied properties.
What does empty building insurance cover?
Property Rebuild Costs
Much like standard premises insurance, your policy will cover the cost to repair or rebuild the premises should it become damaged or subject to complete destruction.
Vacant properties are at higher risk of both fire and theft as there is generally no one monitoring them whilst empty.
Property Owners Liability
Regardless of whether you are at the premises or not, as a property owner, you are responsible for its maintenance and ensuring it is safe at all times.
Property owners liability is there to cover you against claims arising from third parties who may injure themselves on your property.
The ceilings, walls, windows and floors are all covered under the building rebuild aspect of your policy. The fixture and fittings such as the carpet, curtains and furniture are not.
Contents insurance is there as an addon to ensure that should you lose the contents of your unoccupied premises, they will be replaced by your insurer.
Vacant properties are an easy target for squatters. In the event your empty property is taken of by squatters, legal cover will step in to cover the costs of removing them.
It will also cover claims arising from trespassers or identity theft.
Do landlords need unoccupied property insurance?
Landlords insurance is not to different from a home insurance policy. Given the nature of letting to tenants, it is expected at times that your property will be vacant. Because of this, landlord insurance generally allows for a property to remain empty for up to 3 months.
If you are a landlord who’s property is going to be empty for longer than 3 months, then yes, empty building insurance should be purchased.