Understanding unoccupied property cover

15th May, 2015

Many property owners have to manage unoccupied properties at some point, and whilst most policies cover for unoccupancy, the policy wording can lead to confusion and misunderstanding which can result in declined claims and leave owners out of pocket.

Obligations of the insured

A fundamental principle of insurance is an obligation placed on the insured to take every precaution to aid loss mitigation and reduce the risk of damage. In property insurance, the obligation of loss mitigation extends to property owners, whether let to tenants or owner-occupied. A typical owner-occupied or landlord policy restricts unoccupancy to a period of 30-60 consecutive days (depending on the policy provider). The reason for unoccupancy can range from renovations to holidays, in any situation unoccupied property insurance will need to cover the premises during this time. Each insurance provider will have different obligations placed on the insured, some will offer premium savings if the insured is willing to undertake further duties to reduce losses.

Breakdown of likely obligations:

The principle of placing obligations on the policy holder is to promote a minimum standard of risk control and ultimately reduce the frequency and severity of losses. You can visit our property owner’s page to find out more on our bespoke policies, alternatively you can call us to discuss the differing obligations included from our providers.