Dreaming of retiring early in Spain? Everyone has their own reasons to buy a holiday home overseas, and moving from one country to another is by no means easy, even if it’s a holiday. In addition to the actual move itself, there are lots of administrative tasks which can sometimes be a challenge, especially for a first-time holiday home buyer. Which is why we’ve teamed up with Intasure, specialist providers of holiday home insurance, to help you better understand the characteristics of Spanish holiday home insurance.
Documentation provided in English
The prospect of living in Spain can be exciting, but settling down in a foreign country with a different language isn’t always easy. More often than not, most UK homeowners prefer to choose an English-speaking insurance specialist to deal with their holiday home to make sure they can be confident that they have the right insurance cover in place.
As a homeowner in Spain, having the peace of mind to be able to talk in English in the event of a claim is important to consider when thinking about holiday home insurance.
Buildings and contents insurance for a holiday home
Similar to home insurance, there are typically three types of cover available in the market: buildings, contents or buildings and contents cover.
Buildings insurance just covers the structure of your property against fire, earthquake, flooding, or storm damage, and is compulsory if getting a mortgage in Spain. Banks can offer you their own building insurance, but you might prefer to get building cover with an independent insurance company. For building insurance, you’ll also need to calculate the rebuild cost of your Spanish property (rebuild value, not market value). A common way to calculate a holiday home rebuild cost (as our guide describes) is to locate the rebuild value on your mortgage agreement, or either hire a surveyor or use a rebuild calculator.
Contents cover includes belongings within your home and as a general rule, your contents are the things that you can move with you, such as rugs, kitchenware or personal properties. If you don’t need a mortgage for a property in Spain, maybe you might need to cover your belongings but not the building you live in, including other items in the garden. Contents insurance is not compulsory but if you want to consider it in your Spanish property, then it might be cheaper to buy it as a joint policy (building and content insurance).
Unoccupied holiday home
Some insurance providers, as a rule, do not cover homes which are left unoccupied for more than 30 days and the policyholder must be living in the property. Unoccupied homes can be a big risk because properties that are left empty might be statistically an easier target for thieves, vandalism and other hazards. That’s why holiday home insurance exists to separate your cover from a standard home policy.
Holiday home policies can generally cover these particular unoccupied periods, so it might be wise to seek advice to make sure you have suitable insurance protection in place when the property is empty during off-seasons, normally up to 60 days, when money/valuables need to be removed and loss of metered oil/water is excluded.
Short term or long term holiday let
Lately, owning a holiday home in Spain is becoming more popular as an investment opportunity and it might bring extra money even in low season periods. In the case of letting your Spanish home, you might want to check whether public liability insurance is included. Also, if you’re letting your house, considering an accidental damage cover as standard it might help you to prevent and protect your belongings against guests who may not be as careful as you.
Travel emergency and temporary accommodation
Some local insurance companies provide minimal public liability or other add-ons that some people might consider necessary, such as emergency travel or optional accommodation cover. They are sensible and useful features if you cannot stay in your holiday home (or the country) for a number of reasons. For example, if the property suffers a flooding or a fire, you and your family could be under a roof for the duration of the repair, or decide to get a ticket return to the UK, which would be covered.
It’s likely the majority of people looking for holiday home insurance also take price and payment options into consideration but it’s also worth considering the different features and benefits as listed above. When considering buying a holiday home, finding a specialist provider in overseas holiday home insurance might be a good option if you decide you want to spend some time in Spain and enjoy of the good weather, environment and food.