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  • Is your home vacant?

    Posted on March 2nd, 2010 Karen No comments

    antepenko-ryan-house-011In today’s depressed real estate market, many homeowners are choosing to move to a new residence before their old one sells.  But they fail to realize that once their home is no longer occupied, their homeowner’s insurance may not protect the property in the event of a claim.

    Vacant homes have many risks that owner occupied residences do not.  Vacant properties are frequent targets of vandals and thieves, or vagrants looking for a warm dry place to sleep.   Routine conditions  – like a broken pipe or window may go undiscovered for days leading to significant home damage.  For these reasons, insurance companies typically discontinue insurance coverage for homes that have been vacant for 60-90 days.

    Coverage is available for vacant homes, but as you might expect is usually more expensive than regular home owner insurance policies.  Some owners choose to rent out their home instead – landlord insurance policy costs are comparable to homeowner insurance costs, and a tenant can notify the homeowner quickly if damage occurs. 

    Occasionally, a homeowner attempts to save some money by not reporting the fact that their home is vacant to their insurer.  However, if damage occurs it is a simple matter for the insurance claim adjuster to identify that the home is vacant and deny coverage for the claim.  In most cases, coverage ceases to exist for a vacant home  after the deadline defined in the insurance policy expires.   

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