Research shows 10% of secondary UK homes uninsured

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According to recent research Britons’ second homes are more likely to be targets of vandalism, squatting and burglaries if they are unoccupied. Approximately 10% of UK holiday home owners don’t have a home insurance policy, placing them at risk financially.

The London Fire Service estimates that one in every 10 call-outs they receive is to extinguish a fire in an empty property.

Financial news publisher Fairinvestment.co.uk recently reported that approximately 10% of UK holiday home owners did not have an unoccupied home insurance policy in place for their secondary properties. Citing research conducted by a prominent UK insurer, the report revealed that up to 160,000 unoccupied properties are also underinsured, placing their owners at risk financially.

Unoccupied properties are typically inherited homes, property in the process of being renovated or second homes awaiting sale. Although these assets might not be in use, having adequate unoccupied home insurance in place is vital.

Empty houses tend to fall into disrepair over time, especially if regular checks are not conducted. The harsh weather conditions in the UK also contribute to maintenance problems. Frozen water pipes can burst, and unless the problem is addressed immediately repair costs could sky-rocket.

The London Fire Service estimates that one in every 10 call-outs they receive is to extinguish a fire in an empty property. Asking neighbours in the area to keep an eye on the property and informing the local neighbourhood watch that the property will be uninhabited is therefore advisable.

Vacant properties are generally seen to pose a high risk to insurers as they are more likely to become targeted by burglars. Squatters are also more likely to move in and cause damage, and a long period of neglect can lead to the property losing value.

It is imperative that property owners find the right insurance cover for unoccupied second properties. While some insurers won’t supply unoccupied home insurance, UK insurance provider Towergate specialises in insuring unoccupied homes.

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