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Traveling home to reset home insurance max 60 days unoccupied

(23 Posts)
INeedNewShoes Thu 30-Apr-20 12:45:08

DD and I are isolating with my parents, for various reasons. This means we're 250 miles from home. My parents are not shielding but are certainly more vulnerable to Covid-19 than most (early 70s with medical conditions) so we were careful to fully quarantine for 14 days before joining them and we are all isolating carefully here, only going out for a daily walk.

My home insurance requires that the property isn't left unoccupied for more than 60 consecutive days. By the sounds of it, the lockdown won't end before my 60 days run out so I feel the need to travel home and spend a night there to start a new 60 day period, before coming back to join my parents.

It would additionally mean I could pick up a few things that I wish I'd brought with us (medication, some food supplies, summer clothes, DD's scooter).

I think I would leave DD here with my parents and go on my own.

I have two questions really:

Is it acceptable for me to travel such a long distance for the purpose of resetting my home insurance and to pick up clothes etc.?

I would need to put petrol in the car at a pay at pump station, but otherwise would avoid stopping (ie I wouldn't set foot in a service station). Would I need to quarantine for 14 days after going to the petrol station to mitigate the risk of bringing the virus into my parents' house or is that majorly overcooking it?

OP’s posts: |
jinxpixie Thu 30-Apr-20 12:47:03

I had the same issue with my mothers unoccupied home. I just contacted the insurance and they said it was fine to stay away during lockdown and it would not affect the insurance.

Give your insurance a ring

sillysmiles Thu 30-Apr-20 12:48:17

Would it be simpler to contact your insurance company and ask if, given the unprecedented nature of the situation, does this clause still stand?

INeedNewShoes Thu 30-Apr-20 12:48:59

Thanks jinxpixie

I called my insurer before I left home in March and they didn't offer to extend the period, saying that I wouldn't be covered for theft, fire, flood after 60 days. I suppose though, that in the time that has passed since then, insurers must have had to review their policies so I'll try phoning them again.

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teqcar Thu 30-Apr-20 12:49:30

Surely you are not seriously considering this to 'reset' your insurance hmm

Just phone the insurance company if you are that bothered.

Methtones Thu 30-Apr-20 12:50:02

Oh that's good to know. I'm 30 days and about 30 mins away. I've been going home every 2 weeks or so to ensure all is ok. I'm not meeting anyone, wearing gloves disinfecting etc.

I'm shielding, but ultimately dont want my flat broken into and left with no windows for 10 weeks 🤷‍♀️ it's an essential journey for me, but if it were 250 miles I wouldnt be doing it I guess.

PanicOnTheStreets85 Thu 30-Apr-20 12:52:26

Do you have any friends near your old house who wouldn't mind staying the night in it and grabbing the essentials that you left to post to you? Would that satisfy the terms of your insurance?

INeedNewShoes Thu 30-Apr-20 12:53:13

Surely you are not seriously considering this to 'reset' your insurance hmm

hmm yes I am. I can't afford financially to risk not being insured for the most likely things to cause damage to my home. I actually am not bothered about theft; there is nothing of value in my home. But I could not afford to repair damage from fire or water so it would be absolutely disastrous if something were to occur and not be covered.

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1forsorrow Thu 30-Apr-20 12:53:14

I called my insurer before I left home in March and they didn't offer to extend the period, saying that I wouldn't be covered for theft, fire, flood after 60 days. I suppose though, that in the time that has passed since then, insurers must have had to review their policies so I'll try phoning them again. I've had a similar issue with the insurance running out mid April. Phoned insurance company and explained problem and they said it is fine, they couldn't insist on us doing something that would mean we were breaking the law. I think most/all reputable companies would be saying the same.

sashh Thu 30-Apr-20 12:54:32

Contact your insurance company.

If you do make the juorney fill the car with petrol before you go and again before you get to your house, then isolate there for 7 days and assuming no symptoms then travel back.

Derbygerbil Thu 30-Apr-20 12:55:42

I think you’re fine. If you’re not stopping apart from a service station and you’re not even going inside, I can’t see where the risk is, as long as you cleanse your hands after touching the pump, but that’s no different to touch shopping or post. Quarantining for 14 days would be entirely unnecessary.

Also, unless you’re planning to completely isolate yourself and your DD until there’s a vaccine, you’re going to need to reconcile yourself with a bit of risk.

RUSU92 Thu 30-Apr-20 12:56:01

Whatever they tell you, make sure you have it in writing.

INeedNewShoes Thu 30-Apr-20 12:56:25

Thanks sashh - yes, I was thinking this. If I fill up with petrol just before I get to my house, that would give me enough to get back to my parents' so I could quarantine at home before coming back a week later.

OP’s posts: |
RUSU92 Thu 30-Apr-20 12:57:16

If you do make the juorney fill the car with petrol before you go and again before you get to your house, then isolate there for 7 days and assuming no symptoms then travel back

This is madness. You don’t need to isolate after going to a petrol station FFs! Wear gloves, you’ll be fine.

INeedNewShoes Thu 30-Apr-20 12:57:51

My insurance company's current stance sounds as though they may not allow more than 60 days (I am not on the government's shielding list):

From their Q&A on Coronavirus:

*I have been advised to self-isolate for 12 weeks, and I am going to stay with someone else for this time, leaving my home unoccupied. Am I still covered?*

Your policy covers 60 days unoccupied as standard. If UK Government advice says you need to self-isolate for more than 60 days, you will still be covered.

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Derbygerbil Thu 30-Apr-20 13:00:46

@sassh

Why are you suggesting this? The Op is clearly anxious about spreading Covid, but this anxiety is developing into a neurosis if she’s thinking about quarantining after a visit to the forecourt of a service station. We need to be careful, but cutting ourselves off from the world and fearing every interaction with it isn’t the answer... we only store up bigger problems when we emerge... which is particularly unfair if there are children involved.

INeedNewShoes Thu 30-Apr-20 13:03:38

If I was only looking out for myself I wouldn't give visiting the petrol a second thought.

As my parents are choosing to isolate and not visit shops etc. I am doing the same as we are staying with them (I'm also quite asthmatic so taking care for my own reasons too but not to quite the same extent).

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TeaAndStrumpets Thu 30-Apr-20 13:14:44

Do you have a trusted friend or neighbour near your home, who could go in and "inspect" your home or even stay a night? I say this because we have some empty commercial/ part residential premises and we have to inspect them periodically, switch off gas and water etc.

250 miles is a long trek for you. I would send a key by special delivery and ask for help.

Badoukas Thu 30-Apr-20 13:33:40

You could get your home checked by someone else. It's more about you wanting your stuff.

1forsorrow Thu 30-Apr-20 13:34:47

It isn't just self isolating though, it is also about non essential journeys.

jillandhersprite Thu 30-Apr-20 13:37:14

I think you need to call and not rely on the website.

INeedNewShoes Thu 30-Apr-20 13:56:12

I do want my stuff but not enough to go purely to get it if it's against what the government/NHS want us to do.

If having a friend go into the house is sufficient to satisfy the insurance requirements then I will be content with that.

OP’s posts: |
lifeisgoodmostofthetime Thu 30-Apr-20 14:21:15

I'd recommend phoning again as things are changing daily your insurance may have adapted to the current times.

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