Vacant Home Issues
You need to be careful if there is a vacant home that is part of an probate administration. There are a lot of risks with a vacant home because nobody is living there to keep an eye on things. Here is a list of important considerations.
Always make sure that the insurance policy is current on the home. After the death of the owner, make sure that you call the insurance agent right away. There is currently a gap in Ohio law that provides, in certain situations, that a homeowner’s insurance coverage terminates immediately upon the death of the owner. Insurance policies vary from carrier to carrier. Call the homeowner’s insurance agent and tell them what is going on to keep the coverage in force. Know that there may be a need to
Make sure that someone is checking in regularly on the vacant home. Take steps to avoid certain issues. Consider whether to shut off the main water supply. Check the sump pump and the furnace. If the home has an on-site fuel source like heating oil or propane, think about how long that fuel supply will last. In a vacant home, nobody is there to shut off a water leak caused by a frozen pipe. That’s why someone should be stopping by frequently.
Once the obituary is published in the newspaper, people in the community will know that the family home is a vacant home. Think about what you might need to do deter theft or vandalism. Think about who might have a key or know where a key is hidden. It might make sense to change the locks or install some automatic timers on the lights.
Don’t forget to save money on a few things as well. If nobody is living there, you’re not going to need internet or garbage service.
A little forethought can avoid a lot of trouble with a vacant home. For more information, contact me today.