Sunday, October 10, 2010

Insurance Coverage Changes If Your Home Is Uninhabited or Rented

State Farm InsuranceImage via WikipediaIn today's times many houses are empty waiting to be sold or foreclosured on. Who's looking after your house since you moved, your neighbor? You say it's insured so what's the big deal. It may be a problem if your insurer has different rules for an unoccupied home. 
Standard insurance policies are designed to cover homes that are occupied. If you leave your home for a month or longer, your policy may not cover damage or losses. If someone gets hurt on your property,because your not occupying it, your insurance may not protect you from the liability. 
In regard to fire claims, if your home is vacant or unoccupied for 30 days, some insurers exclude coverage for fire damage. For some insurers it could be 60 days. State Farm homeowners policies won't cover vandalism if the home is unoccupied for 30 days. Also if a frozen pipe bursts when the home is vacant they won't cover it. 
If your home is going to be vacant for 30 days or more here's what you should do. Contact your insurer and notify them about the situation. Maybe your insurer might not be effected by your unoccupied status, but they probably will. If you are effected your agent will adjust your policy to one that covers vacant properties. If you know the length of time it will be vacant you can just purchase one that will cover that time frame. You'll probably be paying a higher premium but it's better than being on the hook for repairs or replacing your home. Maybe your insurer doesn't have policies for vacant homes so be ready to look at other companies that will. An independent insurance agent will be able to get a policy for you from a broad range of company's, so check them out. 

What if your house is rented? 
If you are able to rent your home you'll be able to get coverage to also cover the mortgage payment in case it unoccupied during the rebuilding process. Don't forget insurers consider a rented home a higher risk because renters have less interest in caring for the home. So what your getting is a landlord policy for your home and be sure your tenants have renters insurance for the contents of the home. Renters insurance is not very expensive, it usually around $150 to $200 per year. 
While we are at it, you also must have an increase in liability coverage in case your sued by your tenant. Whether inside or outside you can be held liable. 
After being a landlord for almost 30 years, running and maintaining apartments, a fire or someone getting hurt is possible, but rare. Protect yourself, get proper insurance. 


  1. Good advice. I doubt many people realize the limitations of insurance.

  2. Buying umbrella coverage along with your home insurance is a good idea so that you are protected incase someone sues you for any mishap on your property.


  3. Hey if you are looking some good fire damage and water damage services provider company then go through Water Damage Restoration Services. It really helpful. We provide best services in your home town.


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