Contractors or property owners buy builders risk insurance to protect their investment during the construction process. After taking possession of residential real estate, new homeowners purchase homeowners’ coverage, and commercial property owners purchase commercial property insurance.
But, what about the in-between time?
Vacant, completed construction projects are still at risk of loss. If the property isn’t insured, or is underinsured, the financial risks to the owner can be significant. Hail damage, windstorms or other nature-related events can occur almost anywhere, with little to no warning.
In addition to facing the same risks from the elements as an occupied structure, vacant property can also be an attractive target for vandals and thieves intent on stripping the property of its fixtures, duct work, valuable copper pipes or other materials.
Finding insurance coverage for unsold or vacant structures can be difficult; this can be especially true when occupancy fluctuates. Fortunately, US Assure offers coverage options for unsold dwellings and a separate vacant structure product for both residential and commercial structures. The unsold dwelling/third-year policy is made available for clients whose structure was previously insured as a new construction project with the US Assure Builders Risk Plan insured by Zurich. Other options are available for clients who plan to remodel and/or those who plan to rent or lease the completed structure. Those remodeling clients could acquire coverage through a remodeling builders risk policy, then switch to a vacant structure policy once appropriate.
The vacant property product available through US Assure applies to any vacant structure and has a number of advantages for policyholders, including:
- Clients who own multiple properties in the same state with the same occupancy coverage need may be able to cover all of their properties under the same insurance policy.
- Coverage limits of up to $5 million are available (general liability coverage limits up to $1 million).
- Wind coverage is available even in some coastal areas.
- The basic policy covers vandalism, but clients can also choose an endorsement to cover theft.
- Additional optional rental coverages are available.
What’s more, vacant property insurance policies can easily be converted to a landlord, or rental dwelling policy, if the property’s occupancy changes and can also be changed back to vacant, should occupancy change again. It’s important to help your clients protect their investment through the construction process with builders risk insurance, but it’s just as important to help them protect what they’ve built, before the structure is occupied or during periods of vacancy.
To learn more about helping your clients protect their vacant commercial structures, homes or rental property, download our free resource 10 Items to Consider Before Quoting Vacant and Rental Structure Insurance.
This is intended as a general description of certain types of insurance and services available to qualified customers. Your policy is the contract that specifically and fully describes your coverage. The description of the policy provisions gives a broad overview of coverages and does not revise or amend the policy.