Vacant Property Insurance

Many of us will be asked to manage a vacant home at some time in our lives. There are many reasons:

  • You own rental property and are between tenants
  • You’ve moved for a new job but your house is unsold
  • A property is undergoing renovations
  • As executor, you are selling a house to close an estate

What most of us do not understand is that the insurance requirements for a vacant home are different than an occupied home. When a home becomes vacant, a standard homeowners policy may give the insurer the right to cancel mid-term, lower coverage levels, or even deny a claim.

What you need is a policy that is specifically written for the risks of a vacant property. American Modern has two solutions.


For a vacancy of up to a year, purchase a special policy

Named peril protection – Your policy covers those causes of loss listed by name in your policy documents (fire, lighting, wind, hail, explosion, and others). It covers the essentials, but not everything.

Actual cash value loss settlement – For a total or partial loss, we settle at the actual cash value (ACV) of the loss, which takes depreciation into account when settling your claim.

Term – We write 3-, 6- and 12-month policy terms.

Eligible home types

  • Home should be in fair or better condition, showing proper maintenance
  • Up to four-family construction, with no age restriction
  • Valued up to $500,000 (most states > $1M in a few)
  • Renovations in process are accepted without surcharge

Shorter vacancies can be handled with an endorsement

If you have a rental property or seasonal home insured in one of American Modern’s programs, the Vacancy Permission endorsement modifies the policy to accommodate a temporary vacancy, such as when you are between tenants or when the home is closed for the season.
Without this option, to maintain coverage you need to cancel the original policy, purchase a vacant policy, then go back to a regular policy when the vacancy ends. The Vacancy Permission endorsement eliminates that hassle.

Keep in mind that the property must meet the qualifications for the program in which it is insured.

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