Does a standard home insurance policy cover an unoccupied property?

Estate Insure - probate insurance

Standard home insurance will automatically restrict the policy cover for unoccupied properties, however, with Estate Insure you can rest easy that the cover you require will remain in force.

Most home insurance policies define a house that is left vacant for 30 consecutive days or more as unoccupied, and will restrict cover. The reason for this is that without a homeowner or tenant in-situ, houses are more susceptible to break-ins, vandalism, degradation, fire, burst pipes and many more potential hazards. So if your property is left unoccupied it is vital to ensure that you purchase a specialist unoccupied property insurance policy.

Unoccupied home insurance is often needed on a short term basis, such as when houses are pending sale or occupation by a new owner. There are also instances when properties will be left empty for many months or even years, such as during probate, when you are in hospital long term, or while you are undertaking renovation works. 

In each of these situations, without you or a tenant being present to maintain and take care of your home, the property is more at risk. A standard home insurance policy may not be equipped to protect your empty property as the risks associated with your home are higher and the damage caused may be as a direct result of the property being empty. 

An Estate Insurance policy can cover the risks associated with an empty house, whatever the reason.  

The table below shows how an Estate Insure policy offers you extra protection when compared to a standard home insurance policy.


Cover Standard Home Insurance Estate Insure
Fire Lightning, Earthquake & Explosion X X
Theft   X
Malicious Damage   X
Escape of Water   X
Contents Cover   X
Subsidence   X
Up to £2,500 for free lopping   X
Storm   X
Flood   X
Breakage / Collapse or Fixed Aerials   X
£2,500 legal expenses cover for evicting squaters   X

Insurers will never pay for loss or damage caused by your failure to safeguard your property, so you must take precautions to minimise the risks. Read our top tips for protecting your unoccupied property over the winter months.

This includes locking all external doors and windows, ensuring that someone checks on the property on a regular basis, and sometimes having to turn off all sources of electricity, fuel and water. 

For more information about Estate Insure or to get a quote contact:

Rachel Casterton
Estate Insure Manager
0114 280 2872