If you own a vacant home or empty plot of land, you probably have big plans for that property; you’ve also probably put up ‘No Trespassing’ signs for the time being. The next question to ask yourself, then, is: have I properly insured my property to protect myself, as well as my big plans for that space?
These days, having insurance coverage for any unoccupied space you own is a necessity. At first, it may seem that an empty plot of land or building would not need insurance if it were not in use, but this is not the case; in fact, because these areas are unoccupied, empty buildings or lots carry their own risks and liabilities.
Image a scenario where locals might see an empty lot as a shortcut on their way to work, or teenagers might see a deserted building as a cool place to hang out. Should anyone fall or hurt him- or herself on your vacant property during their fun, based on current case law, you could be sued for damages, no matter how many ‘No Trespassing’ signs you’ve posted around the area.
The only way to truly protect yourself from a potential liability suit is to make sure your vacant lot has vacant land insurance, or that your empty property has vacant property insurance. Both types of polices are usually very affordable, and both are designed to protect your best interests.
Vacant land insurance was designed specifically to protect you financially up to a certain liability limit in the event of an accident on your property, and can be used should someone hurt himself or herself while passing through or playing in the deserted space. Vacant property insurance, on the other hand, is designed to protect an actual structure, and so will often cover damages to a building caused by both natural and manmade disasters, including fire, storms, civil commotions, vandalism, and so forth.
The need for these types of insurance is not limited to individuals or landlords, either; others who may need to insure their empty space include:
-Homeowners who are moving but still own their old house
-Real Estate Investors who are overseeing properties that have lacked tenants for over 60 days
-Banks, mortgage companies, or contractors who are holding completed or repossessed properties or lots that have not sold yet
The good news is, insuring your vacant property or building may not be that difficult! In some cases, it’s an easy as extending a homeowners policy, purchasing an umbrella policy, or simply buying vacant property insurance for a couple of months. And with the right insurance agent, getting this done can be incredibly simple.
We highly encourage anyone who owns a vacant building or lot to talk to a member of our Fisher Widmann Flick Insurance Agency staff; we can find out what the most cost effective solution to your insurance needs really is. Don’t let your property pose a risk any longer; whether you live in the Johnstown area or even in Blaire County, Cambria County, Somerset, Latrobe, and any other nearby counties, if you contact us today, our local staff members will meet with you as soon as possible to evaluate your specific needs and make sure that you’re protected.