Whether you own a rental property or only live in the area part-time, you will encounter a time when your property lies vacant. At times, it may remain unoccupied longer than usual, and may require extra care.
By following these handy suggestions for keeping your vacant property safe and secure, you can rest easy, knowing your property is ready for rental or your arrival home.
Provide Regular Maintenance
Grass still grows and air still flows, even if no one is around. Although your property is unoccupied, there is still a need for ongoing maintenance. To help keep track of all the items that must be completed to keep your property safe, create a monthly property maintenance list.
If you live far away from your investment, or are just not able to keep up with the maintenance, hire a local handyman service to perform the following tasks:
- Yardwork and Landscaping
- Check and Clean Out Gutters and Downspouts
- Change HVAC filters
- Change Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detector Batteries
- Pest Control Inspections and Treatments
- Flush Toilets and Run Water in Sinks
- Replace Light Bulbs (especially if you have automated or timed lighting)
- Check for Leaks
- Check for Signs of Forced Entry
- Touchup Repairs and Painting
A monthly report on these maintenance tasks is also a great way to get regular feedback on the state of your property. This can be especially helpful when a significant repair is necessary.
Related Post: Maintaining Your Rental Property
Know the Neighborhood
Building good relationships with the neighbors that surround your property is a great way of keeping your vacant property safe and secure. The surrounding homeowners and renters want to maintain the integrity and safety of their neighborhood just as much as you want to keep your vacant property safe.
Provide trusted neighbors with your contact information and ask them to report anything suspicious to law enforcement first, and then to you. They can also let you know when significant weather is approaching, so you can be proactive about arranging for protective measures or checking for damages.
Install a Reliable Security System
Monitored security systems are an important line of defense for any property, and can alert law enforcement or other emergency services when needed. Modern security systems also have the ability to alert you when anything is amiss, and allows you to control access from your current location.
Related Post: Nine Ways to Protect Your Unoccupied Home
Check Your Insurance Coverage
There’s a big difference between a policy that’s designed for a primary occupancy home and one that is intended to protect a home that will be vacant for an extended period of time. Whether you’re a snowbird, landlord, taking care of a home you’re inherited or a “flipper,” your home has different risks and exposures than one that has a full-time inhabitant. Talk to your insurance agent today to help ensure that your vacant home is covered if the unfortunate occurs.
Keeping your vacant property safe and secure maintains your property’s value and makes it more attractive for prospective renters or buyers. Plus, if you plan to return and take up occupancy again, there is nothing like coming back to a well-maintained and safe home that requires no work to prepare for your arrival.
American Integrity Insurance is committed to providing Florida homeowners with sound, comprehensive insurance coverage and an extraordinary customer experience. We strive to be a valued partner to our policyholders, agents, and community.
We offer traditional and high valued homeowners insurance, condo insurance, renters insurance, and the special coverage required for vacant homes, manufactured homes, and policies designed for those who need less coverage or are renting out their home. We also offer extra protection, including flood insurance, umbrella insurance, golf cart insurance, boat insurance, cyber coverageand identity theft protectionas well as equipment breakdown coverage, to help address a broad range of needs facing Florida homeowners today.