When looking for the right home insurance for your second home you should think about:
How long your property will be unoccupied
What cover your second home needs, e.g. buildings and contents insurance
Whether you need any extra protection, e.g. if you rent out your property
Check with your current home insurer to see if they can extend your policy to include your second home. If not, use this comparison to find a separate policy for your second home.
If you rent out your second home to tenants, you should look for a landlord insurance policy.
How long will your property be empty?
Most policies only cover an unoccupied property for 30 or 60 days, so if your second home will be empty for longer than this you need a specialist policy to protect it.
If you use the property regularly you may get a better deal with a standard home insurance policy. However, most insurance companies only consider the property occupied if you stay overnight.
What cover does your second home need?
As well as buildings and contents cover, think about how you use the property, for example:
A holiday home you only visit a few times a year. You may want to look for a specialist holiday home policy, especially if you rent it out.
A house you inherit that will need cover before it is sold. If the sale will take a while a dedicated unoccupied home policy might be the best option.
A property you are doing up but not moved into yet. If you are working on a property you should consider a home renovation policy.
Somewhere you stay for work, for example if you work far away from home and use a flat to stay in during the week.
If you leave your second home unoccupied for long periods, avoid leaving expensive contents in the property because they will be at risk from theft.
Do you need extra protection?
Think about what else your second home may need to be protected against. For example, if you rent out the property while you are not using it you should think about:
Public liability cover
Loss of rent or income cover
Employer's liability insurance if you hire cleaners or a gardener
There is more information on what cover you need when renting out your second property here.
Second home insurance FAQs
Can I insure my second home with a standard policy?
Not if it is left unoccupied for long periods, because most home insurance policies only cover an empty property for 30 or 60 days.
How long can I leave my second home empty?
It depends, but many insurers do not set a minimum period for second homes. Check the policy first to see how long you can leave it empty for.
Do I need a second home insurance policy?
It is not a legal requirement, but if you have a mortgage your lender will insist you have buildings cover to protect their investment.
Is second home insurance more expensive?
It can be, but the cost of your cover will depend on how you use the property and how long it will be left empty for.
How can I save on my second home insurance?
Use this comparison to shop around to find the best deal, or read these eight tips to cheaper home insurance.
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