Second Home Insurance: Things to Consider (extract of article written by Bethany Milton, Account Executive, AstonLark)
Simply put, second home insurance is for anyone who owns more than one property, however, the type of insurance you need for your second home depends on how you use it.
Whether it is left unoccupied for long periods of time or rented out to other people, it is crucial that you have the appropriate insurance in place. If you’re looking for second home insurance then here are some things to consider.
What do insurers class as a second home?
Any additional home that is not used as your primary residence is classed as a second home. This is typically a property that is used for holidays, but it could also be a home in a city that’s used during the working week.
What types of second homes are there?
- Holiday home – A property that is visited occasionally, usually for short-breaks and holidays.
- Weekend home – Although every insurer has a different definition, generally for a property to be classed as a weekend home it must be occupied three out of four weekends a month.
- Pied-a-terre & town and country homes – This is where occupancy is divided equally over both properties.
What will an insurer consider when insuring a second home?
How often will the property be slept in overnight? This will help the insurer underwrite the policy and give them context. A property that is visited most weekends is less of a risk for an insurer than one that is only visited once every couple of months.
Escape of water
This is possibly one of the biggest concerns for a second home as escape of water damage can worsen for days or even weeks before being detected. Many insurers will require you to keep your heating on a continuous temperature or drain the hot water system entirely during winter months to mitigate this risk. Find out more
How often the property can be visited
Most insurers require a second home to be visited every one or two weeks. If you’re not able to do this, it’s important to tell your insurer to avoid a claim being rejected.
Over the last decade, holiday letting websites such as Airbnb have made temporarily renting out second properties very popular. If you rent out your second home, you need to tell your insurer as you may need holiday let insurance.