What is your dream vacation? Perhaps it is a few months spent backpacking through Europe or taking a cruise around the world. If you have the opportunity to take an extended trip, a lot of planning is required to ensure the vacation goes smoothly. After all, the last thing you want is to return home to chaos. If you plan to leave home for several weeks or months at a time, one of the most important precautions you can take is a review of your homeowners insurance policy and its coverage for your unoccupied or vacant home. You may be surprised to find that your insurance offers limited or no protection once your home has been uninhabited for more than 30 to 60 days. Click here to read on and find out more about how you can protect your property during an extended vacation.
Home Insurance that Expires Overnight
Most homeowners understand that their insurance policies are designed to be renewed once per year. If premiums are not paid, the policy will expire and leave the homeowner without coverage. However, the majority of homeowners insurance policies also have fine print that excludes or limits coverage for an unoccupied or vacant home. This includes homes that are used year round but only left unattended during a long vacation.
Once a home reaches the exclusion time limit, a homeowners policy can quite literally expire overnight. In some cases, the insurer will instead continue to cover an unoccupied home against major perils like fire and wind, but it will exclude coverage for other risks like vandalism and theft. The reason for this is a higher rate of crime in vacant homes as opposed to those that are occupied.
How to Protect Your Unoccupied or Vacant Home While Away
If you are planning to leave your home for several weeks, there are several precautions you can take to protect your interests. Start by adding extra security to your property, such as a monitored alarm system or motion-sensitive exterior lighting. You may also enlist neighbors, friends or family to keep an eye on the house while you are gone and report any suspicious behavior.
Next, schedule a review of your existing homeowners insurance policy with a trusted agent. A professional review can easily identify empty home coverage gaps and whether you would be vulnerable to a lapse or reduction of coverage while away on vacation. By notifying your insurer of your absence, you may be able to acquire a temporary unoccupied home insurance endorsement that protects against high risks while you are away. In some cases, you may need a completely separate insurance policy altogether – one that provides short or long-term coverage that lasts the length of your vacation, whether that is a few weeks or a few months.
For more information about homeowners insurance while you are away for the summer or on vacation, contact our office. We have a team of friendly professionals who are ready to assist you in preparing for your trip. Let us help you enjoy your trip with the peace of mind that comes with knowing you are fully insured regardless of what happens during your vacation. Call us today to request your free quote. We look forward to serving you soon.