I just bought a vacation home. Do I need to purchase a
specific type of insurance?
Insuring a vacation home is different from insuring a
primary residence. As a result, you'll want to purchase insurance that is
specifically geared to this type of property.
The cost to insure a vacation home will vary, depending on where the property is located and the insurance company. Other factors, such as the type of property and special amenities, may also affect the cost of premiums.
Insurance that is specifically designed for second/vacation homes can range from standard coverage that protects against certain named perils, to more comprehensive coverage that protects against all perils (up to policy limits), unless specifically excluded in the policy.
Depending on what the policy covers, you may need to obtain additional protection (e.g., personal and liability property coverage) through either an endorsement to your primary homeowners policy or a separate policy. And if your vacation home is located in an area that is susceptible to flood damage, which is not covered under standard homeowners insurance, you'll want to consider separate coverage for that peril as well. Homes susceptible to hurricanes, wildfires, or earthquakes might also require an endorsement or separate policy.
Insurance premiums for vacation homes are usually much higher than those for a primary residence because of circumstances unique to second homes (e.g., long periods of being unoccupied, vandalism risk). However, you may be able to save money by insuring your vacation home with the same company that provides coverage for your primary residence. You might also be eligible for other discounts, such as those offered for newly built homes and those with an operating security system. Policy discounts vary by state and insurer.
Be sure to shop around for the best
coverage and rates. You might also want to contact the state department of insurance where your vacation home is located for additional information on the coverage and rate options that may be available.