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Vacant Home Insurance

If you have a vacant property you know the dangers that come with an unattended home. Due to these dangers the cost to insure a vacant home can be much more costly than a primary residence. The most common losses associated with a vacant property include:

  • Vandalism
  • Theft
  • Water Damage

While most insurance companies do charge more to insure this type of risk that doesn't mean it needs to break the bank. Your best option as a landlord or homeowner is to shop around the best companies to find the best price. This once took many hours to call each company for a quote but we now offer a service to get up to 5 landlord insurance quotes in only a few minutes.

Do I need to let the insurance company know the property is vacant?

When a landlord tries to get home insurance one of the first questions an insurance agent will ask is if the property is vacant. This is a factor most insurance companies will surcharge for and may not even accept the risk if their underwriting guidelines are strict enough. For this reason many rental property owners feel like they need to lie about the condition of the home to get insurance in place.

There are a couple of things that can happen if you don't tell the complete truth about the status of occupancy for your rental unit.

  1. The insurance company may perform an inspection of the property prior to binding coverage to confirm it is in good condition. If the inspector notices that no one appears to be living there they will inform the company.
  2. Assuming the landlord insurance policy is bound and coverage has been in place the company may deny coverage in the event of a loss. They can deny coverage based on the fact that you lied on your application for coverage.
  3. The worst case scenario is the insurance company sues you for insurance fraud given the fact you knew the property was vacant when completing the insurance policy.

The bottom line is that is may cost you more money in the short term to insure this vacant property but it will save you bigger headaches later if something were to happen.

Make it look like you are home:

It is very easy to find a house that is vacant because you never see the lights come on at night and the lawn is over grown. This is a welcome mat for vandals or theives who look for easy targets. If you visit the property once a week you can cut the grass, collect the mail, and turn on a different light each time. If you can't do this have a friend do it because it will save you a lot of time and money later.