The Taxing Issue of Insuring an Empty Home
Alongside the so-called bedroom tax, a raft of other changes to Local Authority legislation came into effect at the beginning of April 2013.
One such change gives local councils the option to charge the FULL rate of Council Tax on an EMPTY property.
There’s any number of reasons why a property might lie empty. Perhaps you’ve moved to a new house but haven’t yet completed the sale of your old one. Maybe it’s a second home that isn’t being used. Or it could be that you’re simply away travelling for a couple of months, leaving the house to lie dormant in your absence.
Whatever the reason, if your house lies unoccupied, Council Tax shouldn’t be your first concern. Your attention should be on switching your insurance.
Not many people know it, but leaving your house empty for any more than 30 days will invalidate most standard home insurance policies.
Unoccupied Property Insurance
From an insurer’s point of view, an unoccupied home is a vulnerable one. Not only is there perceived to be an added threat of burglary, there’s also concern that burst pipes, gas leaks and other domestic accidents would go unnoticed – resulting in significantly higher clear-up costs.
Thankfully, there are specialist insurers happy to take on the extra risk.
Designed specifically to protect a vacant property, specialist empty home insurance policies can cover your house against fire, malicious damage, theft and more. You’ll normally be asked to provide assurances on security (a burglar alarm is a good idea to help keep the premium down), and fit a certain number of locks to doors and windows – but it’s a small price to pay for peace of mind.
And speaking of small prices, shopping around for empty home insurance via QuoteRack can help you find the best deal.
Naturally, you’ll want the best cover, but saving a little money along the way can be no bad thing.
Especially if you’re going to be paying more Council Tax on that empty home…