Our current insurer will no longer cover our 1st home because it is unoccupied. Can we get any insurance at all?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Mar 13, 2012

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Insurance Question from Sheridan, OR

Asked on 03/13/2012

Our current insurer will no longer cover our 1st home because it is unoccupied. Can we get any insurance at all? We own this house free and clear and are planning to sell it. It needs some work and the economy being what it is and other factors have slowed our progress and so the house sits empty. Is there anything we can do to protect our investment?

Answer given on March 22, 2012

It is difficult to get insurance on a vacant home, because it is more likely to be a target of vandalism, or arson. The fact that you indicate it needs some work does not make it any more attractive to an insurance company.Talk to your agent to see if they have access to a specialty insurance company. Some of these companies will write a limited policy, possibly with a high deductible, on a vacant home. Often times they will exclude vandalism coverage, so be sure you understand what they cover and that it is acceptable to you.You could consider renting the home out and do some work on the home while it is rented. A low rent might get you a tenant who will even help make repairs in exchange for the lower rent. Then you should not have any problem getting insurance, since the home will be occupied and you will get some help in repairing it.


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