Do you have a second home in the UK? If so, then holiday home insurance may well be for you.
Insurance can cover a number of situations, and for holiday homes, the fact that they are not (usually) occupied all the time. That can increase risks such as theft, vandalism or water damage. There are some practical steps you can take, but also taking insurance may be a wise choice.
Why Might I Need Holiday Home Insurance?
Your holiday home is where you go to relax, and it may also earn you an income. You want to make sure that it is protected against adverse events so that it isn’t a worry when you aren’t there. If your property is unoccupied for a long period of time or is not your main residence, a standard home insurance policy may well not give you cover.
Many insurers do not like to offer cover for what they class as ‘non-standard’ home cover. Emerald is different – we can cover various holiday homes, second homes, let homes etc, and for many of these you can get a quote online in minutes.
What is Holiday Home Insurance?
A holiday home policy looks very similar to insurance for your main home. You can get cover for both buildings and contents against a familiar range of risks (such as fire, theft etc). However there are some additional limitations – for example theft cover is more limited when you have paying guests in the property – so it is important to check the terms of any policy before you buy.
If the property is mortgaged then your lender will probably require you to have buildings insurance as a safeguard against events like fire as the destruction of the property without any financial protection would leave them empty-handed. Even if you own the property outright then holiday home insurance can still be a good idea.
Your holiday house is meant to be an escape from the stresses of your everyday life. Let’s face it – if you have a holiday home then the chances are you’ve worked hard for it. That purpose is defeated if it ends up causing you more stress. Holiday home insurance can help give you peace of mind that your retreat remains a happy place so you don’t need to worry about it when you’re not there.
You should also consider contents insurance for things like electronics and furniture. While many insurers refuse to cover your home when it is unoccupied, remember that the chances of theft and damage are higher and many insurers simply don’t want to take that risk on. That’s where specialised insurers such as Emerald come in.
As with any insurance, it is important for you to check that the cover offered meets your needs. If you are unclear about anything in a policy, you should call the insurer for guidance. At Emerald’s call centre – on 0330 1113 7109 – we have trained underwriters on the phone to give you an answer to any question as soon as we possibly can.
How Can I Protect my Holiday Home and Save Money On Insurance?
Generally the things that save you money and reduce your risk will also make you easier to insure and so it’s worth considering a few improvements. Fitting burglar and fire alarms are likely to improve your risk profile along with fitting modern multi-point locks that conform to high security standards on doors and windows.
Most insurers will want windows to be secured while you are away and a property that looks secure will attract less attention. Similarly, there are also some common sense tips on minimising the risk of theft – don’t leave valuables clearly visible and make sure that the property is visited regularly. For very little cost you can also set up lighting systems that are on timers and have any post redirected.
Thieves can quite easily tell if you leave a home for long periods of time. Meanwhile a simple leak in the roof could turn into a flood while you’re out. That’s why even with unoccupied home insurance we still require checks every 14 days just to be sure. That could be by a neighbour, a cleaner or yourself if you are insuring a weekend home.
What are the next steps?
You can get a quote in minutes HERE, and if you have any questions, you can call our home underwriting team on 0330 113 7109 any weekday between 9am and 5pm or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org