Vacant Home Insurance Plans & Info | ALIGNED Insurance

Guarding Your Unoccupied Haven: The Importance of Vacant Home Insurance in Canada

When you have a vacant home in Canada, it’s crucial to ensure it remains protected, even when unoccupied. Whether your home is temporarily unoccupied due to a family move, an extended road trip, or a work assignment in another city, vacant home insurance provides the necessary coverage to safeguard your property during its idle periods. Frozen pipes, theft, and storm-related damages are just a few of the potential risks that vacant properties may face. To mitigate these risks effectively, consider obtaining vacant home insurance in Canada.

Vacant House Insurance
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Is Vacant Home Insurance Necessary?

Vacant home insurance offers the best solution to address the unique risks associated with unoccupied properties, ensuring your peace of mind. Vacant homes are inherently more vulnerable because issues that arise may go undetected for extended periods. Theft, vandalism, damage caused by broken water pipes, and weather-related issues are just a few of the potential risks your empty property may face. highlights that an unattended home is prone to deterioration over time. Unrepaired cracks in walls can worsen, overgrown trees may cause property damage, and pests might find a new residence within your walls. In the absence of vigilant oversight, even a minor pipe leak can escalate into a significant problem. If you own a vacant condo, securing vacant condo insurance is crucial to shield your investment from potential threats during periods of non-occupancy.

For instance, consider the unfortunate incident in Langley, British Columbia, where 30 firefighters were unable to save a vacant house engulfed in flames. Local regulations mandate that vacant properties must remain secure against unauthorized entry and other potential risks. Failure to comply with these requirements can result in financial liability if a fire or damage occurs, with the Fire Department seeking cost recovery from property owners.

Depending on your property’s location, specific regulations may apply to safeguard your vacant home from various risks. Fortunately, unoccupied property insurance is specifically designed to manage these risks effectively. If your home is soon to be vacant, our ALIGNED brokers can assist you in securing unoccupied property coverage that bridges the gaps and ensures your property’s security during your absence. Empty house insurance offers peace of mind by addressing the unique challenges and vulnerabilities that come with leaving a property unattended.

What Else Can You Do to Protect Your Vacant Property?

Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to safeguard your vacant home, whether it’s a brief absence or an extended vacancy. Here are some actions that can effectively help you manage the risks associated with a vacant home:

  1. Hiring a housesitter or getting a family member or friend to visit your property every four days and check for potential problems
  2. Managing minimum and maximum temperatures remotely using an internet-based thermostat system
  3. Shutting off water supplies, draining supply pipes and toilet tanks
  4. Adding non-toxic antifreeze to help prevent frozen pipes and drains
  5. Testing your security, fire and carbon monoxide monitoring systems
  6. Confirming that your sump pump is working as well as installing water sensors to monitor potential sewer backup and/or flooding
  7. Providing trusted neighbours with your contact information in case of emergency
  8. Hiring a landscaper to keep lawns trimmed, gardens maintained, remove fall leaves and clean gutters
  9. Contracting for regular driveway and walkway snow removal
  10. Redirecting mail and deliveries to an alternative, monitored address
  11. Unplugging electronics and appliances (as appropriate)
  12. Canceling newspaper and/or other regular deliveries
  13. Installing internet-based cameras and lighting systems that can be remotely managed and help to deter theft

How Does Extended Absence Affect Your Home Insurance Coverage?

It’s crucial to be aware of the limitations in your homeowners’ property policy when your home is unoccupied. Extended periods of absence, typically lasting 30 to 60 days or more, often require an endorsement to extend coverage. The Insurance Bureau of Canada emphasizes the importance of notifying your insurance representative before extended absences to ensure continuous coverage, especially during winter months when pipe freezing can occur.

Unoccupied home insurance in Canada provides essential protection for homeowners when their property is vacant, ensuring they are covered even during extended absences. Contact your ALIGNED insurance broker before your extended absence to determine the duration of your vacancy and coordinate with your current insurance provider. Each insurer may have unique occupancy requirements, making it necessary to include coverage for vacancy periods in your property policy.

Trust ALIGNED Insurance to assist you if your home will be unoccupied and in need of empty house insurance. The unique vacant property insurance fills the coverage gaps that standard homeowners’ policies may have when your property is vacant, providing comprehensive protection against unforeseen events.

Contact us to discuss comprehensive coverage options and the best risk management practices for your vacant or unoccupied property.

It is also important that you take several proactive measures to protect your property during periods of brief or extended vacancy. It’s crucial to consider these precautions before your home sits vacant. Before your property becomes unoccupied, reflect on the day-to-day, weekly, and seasonal maintenance tasks that you typically perform while living in it. Whether it’s safeguarding against pest infestations during the summertime or ensuring proper ice clearance during the winter months, taking a proactive approach can go a long way in preventing potential harm to your cherished abode.

Need vacant home insurance? Work with an ALIGNED advocate.

Here at ALIGNED, we are always advocating for our clients. We understand that when you need insurance, you need to know that the broker you choose to work with is your advocate in the marketplace.

You also need to know that when things go wrong, your insurance advocate will be there for you. Across Canada, we are there for our clients in good times and bad – and this is why we are proud to call ourselves your insurance advocates.

We are proud to offer Canadians the best vacant property insurance policy thanks to our partnership with over 70 of Canada’s top and most reputable insurance providers.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is It Possible to Insure a Vacant Home? 

It is certainly possible to insure a vacant home, and if a home you own is going to be vacant for a period of time, you should consider vacant house insurance. Typically, you cannot insure your vacant home under your homeowner’s insurance policy. However, separate or additional vacant home insurance is normally necessary. It is possible to get excellent vacant home coverage, but it usually comes at a higher premium.

2. What is a Vacant Home Insurance Policy? 

A vacant home insurance policy comes into play when a home is unoccupied for 30 to 60 days. If your home is, in fact, vacant, or no one intends to live in it, you need to notify your insurance company to see if they will cover your vacant home. A vacant home insurance policy may not contain the same coverage as your homeowner’s policy, and it is important to understand what is covered. This type of policy will specifically cover the risks involved in a vacant home.

3. Why Is Unoccupied House Insurance So Expensive? 

Part of the reason why vacant home insurance costs so much is that most companies do not insure a vacant home on a homeowners’ policy, so it is necessary to seek separate coverage. Limitations on homeowners’ policy mean that if a property becomes vacant for a specific period (normally 30-60 days) and something happens, it may not be covered. Another part of the cost associated with vacant house insurance is that there is added risk involved in a home being vacant. It’s more expensive to insure a vacant home because of the increased risks associated with the number of things that could go wrong without anyone being aware. Often, this coverage is one and a half to three times higher than a policy for an occupied home due to the higher risk involved for insurers.

4. What is the Difference Between Vacant and Unoccupied? 

The difference between vacant and unoccupied in part lies in the reason for the vacancy. If a home has been vacated for a renovation or an extended trip, it is considered an unoccupied house because the intention is for it to be lived in again within a fairly short period. If a home is vacant because it is being sold or has been purchased as an investment property and there is no intention for you to live in it, it is considered vacant. Insurance companies may have different timelines, but typically between 30-60 days of vacancy, they should be notified of the change in status of your home.

Related Posts

Sources: 1 “The Ultimate Guide to Maintaining an Unoccupied Home”; 2,3,4 Langley Advance Times “Vacant home’s owner to be charged with firefighting effort” ; 5 “All About Home Insurance”

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