Owning an unoccupied building can pose serious liabilities because unoccupied buildings are more susceptible to vandalism, undetected repairs, fire and other losses. If you own unoccupied property, it is advisable to purchase unoccupied property insurance, also known as unoccupied building insurance to protect against risks.
- Lightning damage
- Windstorm or hail damage
- Smoke damage
- Theft and attempted theft
- Riot or civil commotion damage
- Escape of water
- Vandalism (no one is present to deter vandals)
- Malicious mischief on the property and general property destruction
Under most policies, unoccupied property insurance can provide protection if your building goes unoccupied for thirty days, but bespoke arrangements can be made. You may also be able to choose the length of cover (3, 6, 9 or 12 months) to ensure that you are only paying for what you need. It also protects against liabilities in the event someone is injured on your property and claims damages. It may also be a viable option if the property is in the process of being sold or if it is under construction and is uninhabitable.
Depending on your policy, there may be certain conditions that must be met in order for a claim to be covered, such as specific lock requirements and security devices fitted throughout the property. Scrutton Bland will make sure that you know all limitations and requirements of your unoccupied property insurance policy. In addition to purchasing cover for an unoccupied building:
- Regularly inspect the property for damage or threats of damage
- Make sure you have window locks and 5-lever mortise deadlocks to secure the property
- Install alarm systems that are triggered by intruders, fires or floods
- Remove all valuables
- Switch off utilities