Vacant Homes- A Special Risk
One of the misfortunes of the economy these days is the number of vacant homes for sale. Many of them have been vacated by owners who have moved on to another home, leaving their vacated home either vacant (little or no furniture or personal property) or unoccupied (no people) for a significantly long time. This an insurance problem because, after 2 months of vacancy, a homeowners policy significantly reduces coverage.
Vacancy is defined as not enough goods for occupancy. So, according to that definition, a home could be considered vacant unless it has kitchen appliances, table and chairs, at least one bed to sleep on, and somewhere to sit (i.e., a couch or chairs). If there is very little furniture, and nothing in the bedrooms, chances are, your insurer has the ability to apply the vacancy clause. At a minimum, the insured may have to spend sizable dollars to fight the company’s decision.
Vacancy and Homeowners Insurance
There are two problems with a home that is vacant greater than 60 days: