Unoccupied home insurance

Flexible cover for properties awaiting probate, sale or refurbishment

Our cover

Why would I need Unoccupied Property insurance?

Some insurers may not provide cover if a property is left unoccupied for more than 30 days. Insurers may be reluctant to insure an empty home because they are often seen as a higher risk - they can be targeted by thieves, squatters or vandals; and the damage caused by flood or fire will often be more extensive because there is nobody at home to limit the damage.

Our unoccupied property insurance caters for most types of property, whether it's a private house or flat, small commercial property, or even if it's just land you need to insure.

If you have responsibility for an unoccupied residential property that needs insuring, then you can request a quote here

What else would be helpful to know

What else would be helpful to know?

Unoccupied Property Insurance policies will often require you to meet certain requirements - these are often known as "Unoccupied Warranties" or "Unoccupied Building Conditions". For example, draining the water systems, switching off the utilities, documented visits on a weekly basis, installing certain locks, sealing the letterbox, etc. Failure to comply could lead to a claim being turned down. Insuring a property that is going to be unoccupied or is going through probate, trust or deputyship can be different to taking out standard home insurance.

Specific conditions to comply with

Some insurers put in stringent terms (“Unoccupied Building Conditions”) which must be enforced before they will provide cover. If these conditions are not complied with then it could affect any claim. Guardcover offers, possibly, the most flexible cover for properties unoccupied for less than 12 months, with choices of conditions and premium discounts for certain types of properties. It is worth noting that insurance policies can sometimes include specific endorsements that you need to understand. These are different to the 'Warranties' and these would be made clear to you at the time of your quote.

What is insured

Again, some unoccupied property policies and a number of standard home insurance policies may offer reduced cover, so your buildings and contents may only be covered in the event of damage caused by fire, lightning, earthquake or explosion (sometimes known as ‘FLEE’ cover). With Guardcover, we offer a wide-range of cover as standard which can help to give you peace of mind around your property. In addition, your property will be automatically covered for damage caused accidentally as well as by theft, attempted theft, malicious damage, storm, flood, escape of water/oil, falling trees and subsidence, landslip or ground heave.

Covers available for Leasehold and Freehold properties

If you’re wondering what our Unoccupied Property insurance includes, then we’ve answered a few questions here!


We can offer contents cover

Leasehold and legally responsible for insuring the buildings

Again, we can offer buildings and contents cover

Freehold-Flat or Apartments

If the cover is only for a part of the building (e.g. block of flats, apartment etc.) – we can offer contents cover

what's included

We can cover damage to your insured property caused by:

  • Accidental damage and malicious damage

    Essential protection for your property

    Our wide-ranging cover goes beyond some of the standard ‘unoccupied property’ policies. Taken a fall through your ceiling? Or discovered that your property has been singled out and damaged? Our cover will help.
  • Theft and attempted theft

    What does theft and attempted theft insurance cover?

    Empty properties can sometimes attract the wrong attention, which is why our buildings cover includes damage caused by break-ins or attempted break-ins. You can also include our contents cover if you have specific items that are being left in the home. Security requirements apply.
  • £5million property owners' liability

    £2million if insuring land only

    If someone is on your property and they injure themselves or damage property belonging to them, then there is the potential that they could hold you liable. If that happens, our liability cover will help cover court costs and potential compensation.
  • Escape of water or oil

    Including water from a plumbing or heating system

    We understand that water damage can be extensive, especially in a home where there is no one regularly about. We automatically cover escape of water from any tank, apparatus, or pipe; or escape of fuel from any fixed oil heating installation.
  • Fallen trees

    Do you have a dangerous tree?

    If there has been one storm too many and a tree damages your property, our cover can help get your house fixed and back in to shape.
  • Storm, flood, fire and subsidence

    Protection against unforeseen events

    Our policy includes cover for times when the damage can be serious; which may result from the consequences of a storm, flood, fire, or incident of subsidence.

More benefits of our Unoccupied Property insurance

  • Damage to locks following theft, attempted theft or loss of keys

    Maximum £5,000 per claim and £15,000 per policy period

    We will pay for the cost of changing locks at your insured property if the keys are lost following a theft or attempted theft from your property or your home. This also includes digital access cards, safe keys, or safe combination access codes.
  • Tree felling or lopping

    Maximum £500 per claim (£2,500 in any one period)

    Worried about the potential damage that one of your trees might cause? We can cover the reasonable costs of lopping or removing trees, which you are responsible for, if they are at risk of injuring someone or damaging your property. Confirmation required by an approved, qualified person.
  • Fly-tipping

    Found unwanted rubbish at your property?

    If your unoccupied home has been picked out as the ‘local dumping ground’, we will cover the costs of clearing and removing any property illegally deposited in or around your insured premises. Up to £5,000 cover per period of insurance (policy does not cover the first £1,000 of any claim).
  • Finding the source of a leak

    Up to £5,000 per policy period

    Trying to find the source of a leak can often require professional help. We will pay reasonable costs required to locate the actual source of damage caused by the escape of water from any tank, apparatus or pipe, or leakage of fuel from any fixed oil heating installation.
  • Breakage of glass

    Includes boarding up costs.

    If you discover a broken window, our cover will include the costs of boarding up, if necessary, and replacement of the broken glass.
  • 24 hour helpline

    We're here to help

    24 hour, 365 days a year claims helpline, providing emergency assistance where needed.

Key features

With over 20 years' experience, we understand the needs of solicitors, homeowners, conveyancers and more. To ensure we cover a variety of eventualities we have spoken to our customers, partners, and solicitors to ensure we include features for a wide range of unoccupied property situations. We understand that every property is different, requiring its own specific policy.

Flexible policy terms

Cover that gives you flexibility with policy terms of 1, 3, 6, 9 and 12 months available.

No inspections

For most residential properties, recently unoccupied, you can choose cover to exclude regular, documented property visits.

Non-standard construction

We understand that properties come in all shapes and sizes, which is why cover is available for many non-standard construction types including most timber-framed, pre-fabricated, flat-roof and other building types.

Wide range of cover

Whilst other insurance policies can look to limit the cover available for your property at a time when you need the cover most, we provide a wide range of covers for your unoccupied property.

Variety of circumstances

We can cover most circumstances from properties going through probate, deputyship and power of attorney, to extended holidays and secondments and gaps in tenant residency.

Contents cover

Whilst unoccupied properties are at increased risk of vandalism, theft or access by squatters, we can still provide contents cover alongside your building cover.

Security discount

Our pricing for your unoccupied property insurance cover will automatically include a discount covering the different levels of security in operation at your property.

Your policy document explorer

For customers incepted on, or after 24th February 2020, click below to access your policy wording. For customers incepted before 24th February, please contact us.