Earthquake Insurance – Is Your Holiday Home Covered?
Following the tragic events earlier in April when the earthquake hit several towns in central Italy, owners of holiday homes abroad are urged to check that their house insurance covers earthquake damage, as many popular second home locations are prone to natural disasters.
Earthquakes in Spain, France, Italy, Portugal and even the UK, don’t happen as often as they do in say Japan, but they’re becoming more common and the destruction they cause was unfortunately evident in Italy.
In addition to ensuring your overseas holiday home insurance covers rebuilding following earthquakes and catastrophic events, you should pay attention to the earthquake excess. On some European policies the excess deducted from a claim following earthquake damage is a % of the sum insured, often 5%. So if your holiday home buildings sum insured is £200,000 you would have to pay the first £10,000 for repair work.
If this is the case it can be prudent to shop around for an alternative, as many insurance policies for overseas property have a fixed low excess for earthquakes (Schofields earthquake excess is £300).
If you home is in an earthquake area be prepared, especially if you let your holiday home. Consider adding some safety advice in your guest information pack. Here is some good earthquake safety advice which covers…
* What to do before an earthquake
* What to do during an earthquake
* What to do after an earthquake
If you’re considering buying property abroad in a region prone to earthquakes, ensure that the property is earthquake-proof. Get a qualified structural engineer or surveyor to examine the construction/plans, but most importantly – make sure you have earthquake insurance with a low excess.