Insurance for UK property when in Spain

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11 Jul 2011 00:00 by xetog Star rating in Wiltshire/holiday ap.... 514 posts Send private message

We have a house in the UK and a holiday home on the Costa Blanca. Until recently we have taken 2 holidays of 2 months each without protest from our UK insurers whether it be for the home or car because we do not leave the UK for more than 60 days. However, what with the mounting costs of ferries and fuel we have decided to make it one 120 day break. So being honest and upright citizens, we informed our insurance companies of our intention and frankly they were horrified! The house insurers at first refused even to think about it, but have sent it up to head office for a senior assessor to review, the car insurance company say that they will charge an extra 70% on my premium provided we only go the once, any more times and they will not insure me at all. There must be thousands like us who want to divide their time more equally between the UK and Spain, so can someone tell me what you do? My insurers think that most people either just wing it or haven't read the small print on their policies. It is interesting to note that we had our house insured with a major insurer (More>Than) for decades when we realised that their policy allowed for 60 days in any one year and to allow 120 days in any one year they wanted to load the premium by 150%. Luckily our current insurer was not only cheaper, but allowed us 60days as many times as we want as standard

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11 Jul 2011 13:58 by Faro Star rating in London. 1139 posts Send private message

I previously notified a UK insurer for a 3 month trip and all they asked was that I have a keyholder inspect and keep an eye on the place whilst I was away.

I try to comply with small print on insurance policy as I know they always look for a way out when you do make a claim!

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11 Jul 2011 14:27 by Piltonian Star rating in Madrid. 36 posts Send private message

Good point to raise.

With car insurance, I shopped around to find a policy that allowed up to six months outside the UK (LV=) - it was three tiimes the cost of the cheapest without that, but there you go.

On house insurance (Home and Legacy), they're asking, as you suggest, that the property is not empty for more than sixty days at a time. That's fine, I'm back once a month and friends stay in my absence... but as I migrate to, well, migrating; I think I'll have to go back to them and check that complying with the letter of the rules will be enough.

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11 Jul 2011 14:55 by xetog Star rating in Wiltshire/holiday ap.... 514 posts Send private message

Our insurance company (L&G) say that someone visiting the property, even everyday is not enough and that the property needs to be lived in for a reasonable length of time before the 60 day clock can be reset.

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11 Jul 2011 14:57 by gcarton Star rating. 145 posts Send private message

For car insurance try SAGA. It is upto 365 days per annum outside the UK.

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11 Jul 2011 15:05 by Piltonian Star rating in Madrid. 36 posts Send private message

Just found the wording from my insurer...

"Full cover will continue if your home is left unoccupied for up to 60 consecutive days. After 60 days a number of
exclusions will apply - cover for loss or damage caused by escape of water from fixed water apparatus (unless your
home is kept heated to a temperature of at least 15°C and any loft hatch kept open to allow warm air to circulate or the
water is shut off and the fixed water tanks, apparatus and pipes are drained) and cover for theft or attempted theft,
vandalism or accidental damage will be excluded. This exclusion also applies to outbuildings containing plumbing and
associated amenities at your home."

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11 Jul 2011 15:11 by Piltonian Star rating in Madrid. 36 posts Send private message

... and some more specific detail:

"Unoccupied – A home becomes unoccupied if it, (a) has not
been lived in for more than 60 consecutive days, or (b) is not
furnished for full habitation, or (c) is not resided in for a total
of 180 days or more during the period of insurance."

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11 Jul 2011 15:16 by Faro Star rating in London. 1139 posts Send private message

any variation should be in writing - no point saying I called and spoke to someone!

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11 Jul 2011 17:55 by scubamike Star rating in Murcia province . 220 posts Send private message

scubamike´s avatar

I live in Spain permanently now but when we used to come out here for more than 60days the insurance company wanted around £80 extra even though the house was checked on a regular basis by a neighbour and family.  I got round it by flying home for a day ( flights were a little cheaper then) It gave me an opportunity to check the post etc. and beat the insurance company at their own game

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11 Jul 2011 18:29 by xetog Star rating in Wiltshire/holiday ap.... 514 posts Send private message

Some great thoughts.  I will certainly try SAGA as my car insurers want an extra £275 for  the additional 60 days.  I am about to pay the next years premium, so it's certainly worth a try.  The house insurance is also a stumbling block as all the insurance companies seem to have different rules.  Thanks again.

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