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Vacant Property Insurance – Why you need it

Vacant Property Insurance – Why you need it

Home insurance policies can become invalid as soon as a homeowner dies or after a house is left empty for a certain period of time after death.

If the deceased policyholder was the only person living in the property, the home insurance is likely to become invalid either immediately or within a month. 

Even if the cover does not lapse on death most home insurance policies state that the house cannot be unoccupied for more than 30 days. After any 30-day grace period the home insurance cover could either be declared void entirely or scaled back to exclude certain claims.

Grieving relatives can easily overlook this when they take over the deceased’s affairs. Relatives of the recently deceased are often unaware that their loved one’s home insurers may not pay claims, putting their inheritance at risk. The situation can be fixed if decisive action is taken, insurers react in different ways and public awareness of the problem is low. 

Mandatory inspections can be a challenge

It is not uncommon for property insurance to require property inspections to be carried out in order that cover is maintained.

Complying with these policy conditions can be a challenge especially in current conditions. For example where weekly inspections are required these may not be possible. Travel restrictions may be extended, staff may be in isolation or furloughed reducing the capacity of the executor function.

Securing your unoccupied property

Whether, as a family member facing the emotional upheaval of bereavement and associated administrative requirements of an estate, or as an executor facing the busyness of the requirements of Probate caseload in difficult and unprecedented market conditions, it is important to ensure that vacant property is insured as quickly as possible.

In these times of lockdown it has become even more essential to find an immediate and flexible insurance solution that fits the government’s lockdown guidelines, satisfies the requirements of the estate, is economical and brings peace of mind to all parties that the property is protected.

Releasing the time of busy Solicitors and Executors

Managing probate and/or court of protection cases, whilst rewarding, takes time. Dealing with multiple property, content and will related items, the day to day affairs of court of protection, managing the sourcing and procurement of suppliers and services, ensuring value for money whilst maximising fee earning potential is quite a juggling act.

We work with solicitors, executors and partners delivering services and related works to ensure that probate property is protected, maintained, prepared for sale and anything else we might encounter along the way:

  • document search
  • valuation of assets
  • management of auctions
  • rehoming of pets
  • property clearance
  • a leaking tap
  • lock change

We can even arrange for regular maintenance to take place so that the home and garden is kept well-tended.

In doing so we provide peace of mind to clients helping to release their professional time and expertise assured that their client’s property and property related affairs are attended to.

Risks to property

A property suddenly left empty, due to the owner being taken ill or passing away, can be especially vulnerable. Chances are the absence was unexpected so the usual checks made if one was going away for a while – doors, windows, heating, appliances etc. – won’t have been made.

An uninhabited home will still have household bills such as water and gas to pay, even on a standing charge, outgoings that could be avoided if managed.

Furthermore, a property that was once at a high standard can deteriorate over time if left unchecked and could fall victim to an expensive accident such as flooding or water damage.

Additionally if a home is burgled after the owner dies, for example, the insurer might not pay out. This could be particularly painful if the items stolen were central to a bereaved person’s inheritance.

Banks will cancel any direct debits on death, which could affect the payment of an insurance premium

If the deceased is the main insurance policyholder but the house is not left empty, the remaining spouse must apply to have the policy put into their name. If the house is left empty, an executor of the will can do the same thing

Easy to arrange, flexible Vacant Property Insurance

EstateProtect, the vacant property insurance available from Property Solutions Group is suitable for any property left empty.  

We can insure it for you only £60 per month AND we cover contents.

If you are a solicitor requiring hassle free solutions to all manner of property and probate related cases our experience and network of suppliers .

Available nationwide, there are NO inspection requirements* which gives you time to work out how you want to manage the property.  

  • It’s instant – cover can be provided within minutes by phone or email
  • It’s simple – there are no forms to complete
  • Contents are also covered for the duration (although limits may apply)
  • There’s no quoting process – it’s a fixed fee charged only for the time you need it
  • There’s no commitment, no cancellation fee and no obligation to use any of our other services
  • It’s flexible – use it for days or months as required
  • Payments can be deferred until the Estate is settled
  • Nationwide coverage