A Guide To Holiday Home Insurance

Holiday homes need special attention when getting the right insurance. For reasons such as being left unoccupied, rented out or located abroad, they need a specific holiday home policy. This quick guide talks you through the main differences.

What's the difference with holiday home insurance?

Your holiday home is probably made of bricks and glass, or something similar, just like any other home right? So why do you need specific holiday home insurance?

The truth is that while a holiday home is subject to many of the same risks as any standard home, there are additional ones too.  And these are often not covered by standard home insurance.

In this short guide we’ll look at some of the main differences a holiday home insurance policy has.

Unoccupied Insurance for a holiday home

If the property is going to be unoccupied for more than 30 days most standard home insurance policies will not cover you. This is because damage from things like burst water pipe, storm damage and break ins could only be limited if you are present. A water leak can cause serious damage to a property when no one is there. For this reason unoccupied property cover is the most important extra protection in a holiday home insurance policy.

Renting your property

A standard home insurance plan will cover you, your family and your non-paying guests to stay and live there. If you’re renting the property you face extra risks as a landlord. Your holiday home insurance is designed to account for the risks you face from renting. 

Insuring holiday home abroad

Standard home insurance is unlikely to cover a holiday home in another country and likewise dealing with a local insurer in that country is likely to be tricky with language barriers, time differences and expensive call costs. So if your holiday home is abroad, specific insurance can account for this.  For example even the extra cost of travel expenses aboard should you need to visit your property in an emergency can be included in the cover. At Towergate, we even include this cover as standard in our holiday home insurance.

Buildings and contents insurance for a holiday home

All policies differ of course but in essence an insurance policy for a property has two main goals. To protect the building and the contents. Holiday home insurance is no different in this respect.  Let your insurer or broker know the rebuild cost and combined value of the contents and this can be protected as normal.

Two things to remember are:

  • That holiday home policies generally won’t cover high value items as standard. This is because holiday homes are considered to have lower amounts of contents in the homes and not to have high value items left in them while they are unoccupied

  • And that you don’t need to include items already covered on your holiday insurance. There’s no point in paying for cover twice! 

Home emergency cover

Having a property abroad or let out can make logistics difficult if there was an emergency. In cases like this you may want to consider emergency home cover. It will provide you or your tenants with access to tradespeople, often 24 hours a day, who can visit your home to help limit or repair damage.

Temporary accommodation insurance 

If your holiday home is a long way from your main residence then you might want to look for a policy which offers temporary accommodation cover.  If an insured event (such as a fire or flood) meant you couldn’t stay at your property, alternative accommodation could be very expensive while the damage was being repaired and this protection could cover that cost.

Depending on where your holiday home is and how it’s occupied, there are many considerations to get the right insurance.  The most important thing is to speak with a specialist broker or insurance company so they can help you make the right choices. 

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