There are few luxuries like a summer home. For many families, it provides an oasis away from the chaos of everyday life with all of the comforts of home. Because it is your home! And you should protect your home. When it comes to insuring your vacation property, there are a few things to keep in mind.
If you own your primary home, your homeowners insurance will provide some coverage for your secondary home. For example, liability coverage will protect you at either home -- or anywhere, for that matter. Your homeowners insurance also will cover your personal property at another residence up to a limit, which you should discuss with your insurance agent. But you may decide you need more insurance coverage.
If you want to cover the gap between what your primary homeowners policy covers and what you need, a dwelling fire policy is the way to go and there are three types, each with increasing levels of coverage. The broadest protects your property from any peril -- including a riot! -- that isn’t specifically excluded in the policy.
Another thing to discuss with your insurance agent is the unique risk you take by not being in the property all the time. If a pipe breaks, a sewer backs up, or there’s flooding of any kind, you won’t be aware of it until the damage becomes severe. Purchasing flood insurance is a good idea. Also consider buildings not attached to the primary structure, like housing for your boat or a detached garage. The coverage you have for these separate structures might be limited, so be sure to discuss it with your agent.
If you plan to rent your vacation home out to others, you may consider purchasing extra liability insurance to cover people in your home when you’re not there. And some policies won’t cover damage done by renters -- be sure you thoroughly understand your policy before handing over the keys.
Summer is almost here! Now is a great time to review your policy and be sure you’re covered so that you have nothing to worry about but making sure you have enough charcoal on hand for the grill.