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If you are lucky enough to own a holiday home abroad, ensuring you’re insured is a crucial part of ownership, as you are leaving a property for long periods of time and you must ensure you are covered as you can’t just pop round and sort out problems like you’d be able to with a UK-based holiday home.

No matter the destination, your home is likely to be at risk from the same dangers as your home in the UK, and as such you’ll need similar cover to your home insurance policy.

How Best To Insure An Overseas Home?

When it comes to insuring your second property, a standard house insurance policy won’t be enough to cover the property for the amount of time you’re likely to be using the property yourself. Many insurers may exclude properties which are left unattended for more than 30 days a year.

Overseas holiday home insurance can help keep you covered even when you’re not living in the property all year round, though bear in mind that some brokers may not pay out claims if the property is vacant for certain amounts of time.

What Is Covered In An Overseas Home Insurance Policy?

Holiday home policies will differ from broker to broker, but they should essentially provide the following features, which can come in handy by protecting your property from afar:

  • Accidental damage
  • Home emergency cover – including a 24-hour helpline
  • Loss of income and rent – covers in the event of flood or fire damage that renders your property unfit for rent
  • Alternative accommodation – helps to rehouse your guests in the event that your property becomes inhospitable in unforeseen circumstances
  • Employers’ liability – helps to cover you against claims made against you by those who look after the property for you while you’re away, including cleaners and maintenance staff
  • Personal possessions – covers any personal items you may leave at the property, including those you keep in a safe
  • Emergency travel – helps to cover you in the event that you need to travel to the property to deal with the property as the result of a claim
  • Public liability - covers you in the event of a guest bringing a claim against you

Much like a home insurance policy in the UK, holiday home insurance is split into two sections – buildings insurance and contents insurance – and when it comes to having a holiday home abroad it’s worth taking out both in order to maximise your protection.

Buildings Insurance

Buildings insurance helps to cover the structure of the home itself and any adjoining outbuildings, and usually helps with costs of repair or rebuilding following damage caused by weather events such as storms, floods, wildfires and subsidence.

Additional cover may be required for any additional constructions, such as swimming pools, so it’s best to ask your broker if they come as part of the policy. Also, if you have a mortgage on your second home, having some buildings insurance against the property is a legal requirement.

Bear in mind as well that the cost of repairs and rebuilding your overseas holiday home will be vastly different to what you expect to pay in the UK, so having some overseas holiday home insurance to help cover some of the costs is crucial.

Contents Insurance

Whilst contents insurance is not a legal requirement when it comes to owning a second home abroad, it’s certainly recommended as it can protect you against loss and help set your mind at ease at times when you are not present at the property.

Contents cover can help to protect anything from furniture to electrical equipment – which can be quite expensive purchases – although it’s usually advised to not leave valuable items when you’re not present at the property. This can be particularly important to remember if you let out your holiday home to strangers.

When searching for contents cover, it’s worth checking you are not doubling up on a policy, for you may already have contents cover through another insurance product – including travel insurance, home insurance or as an added extra on credit cards or paid-for bank accounts.

How Can I Reduce My Premium Price?

Whilst you might not be able to be present at the property all the time, there are steps you can take to ensure your overseas holiday home is protected in your absence, including ensuring that you have secured the property using the correct type of secure lock.

Home CCTV systems can be useful to have as they can help keep watch on your property while you’re not there, as well as provide vital evidence in the case of a claim, as well as allow you to check the property with just a click of your mouse.

Check out our Guide to Overseas Home Ownership for more information on protecting your overseas investment.Check out our Guide to Overseas Home Ownership for more information on protecting your overseas investment.

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