Advice for Unoccupied Properties

On Monday the 23 March 2020 the Government announced additional measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus, instructing all non-essential premises to now close.


With the exception of a specified group of circumstances, businesses and premises have been instructed not to open for trade from close of business on 23 March 2020 for a minimum period of three weeks. The Government will review at the end of this period with a view to relaxing if possible.

Some Insurers have brought in specific extensions on policies to protect Policyholders.

In the meantime here is some common sense advice that will help customers to comply with general unoccupancy policy conditions:

  • Turn off electricity, gas and water supplies at the mains and drain down all water systems except those connected to fire suppression systems or in use to maintain a sufficient level of heating to prevent freezing
  • Ensure any intruder alarms, automatic fire alarms, automatic sprinkler installations or other fire suppression systems are in good working order and are switched on & in full operation
  • Ensure that all points of access to the premises are secured against entry by intruders.
  • Remove all waste, unfixed combustible materials and gas bottles from the interior of the premises, including any communal parts, and store safely in external areas.
  • Make sure that an internal and external inspection of the building is carried out, preferably every 7 days, but at least in accordance with the minimum requirements of the applicable policy wording. Keep a record of any inspections you make to refer back to if you need to.


Nick Ashby

Managing Director

Ashby Wray Insurance Brokers

Kenant Chambers
2 Bath Avenue

Tel: 01902 420 461
Fax: 01902 420 771


Ashby Wray Insurance Brokers is a trading name of Ashby Wray & Partners Ltd which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority for General Insurance Business.

Registered in England No. 00214188