There are several reasons why people leave their homes vacant. For example, someone who has inherited a home but has no intention to move may leave the house unoccupied. Sometimes, a property becomes inhabitable, but the homeowner cannot afford to repair it. With rental properties, it is impossible to ensure 100% rental occupancy at all times. Whatever your reasons for keeping the house unoccupied, there’s no doubt that there are some real dangers to letting a house sit vacantly. We’ve listed some of the risks below.
Theft, Vandalism, and Squatters
Even if you’ve placed your valuables somewhere else, other dangers are associated with a vacant home. Burglars could steal aluminum pipes, copper wires, other metals, AC components, and appliances from an empty house. Vandals could break in to draw graffiti, cause arbitrary damage, or make some other malicious mischief.
Squatters could take over your home and damage your property, and they could also make the house vulnerable to fire or flood. But the biggest problem of all is that if you don’t act promptly, evicting them could be a huge problem. In some states, squatters are protected by legal rights, forcing you to seek legal counsel.
Pests and Other Animal Infestation
Vacant homes offer the perfect conditions for critters to thrive and build their nests. For example, raccoons often nest in the attic, where there’s plenty of soft insulation. Also, bird droppings can be difficult to clean, while bats, opossums, rats, and mice can enter the house through broken windows and create many problems.
Water or Fire Damage
Empty homes can be easily broken into, causing a range of problems. Arsonists can light candles and create a real threat of fire. Similarly, burst pipes can cause flooding and other water damage. Additionally, sediment buildup inside the water supply lines can corrode the fittings. If you live somewhere where the temperature gets below freezing, freeze and thaw cycles can cause plumbing issues and damage in other areas.
It Is Expensive
Insurance companies do not cover claims for homes that have been unoccupied for over 30 or 60 days, depending on the regulations. If you plan to leave a house vacant for over 30 days, you must inform the insurance company, or your claim will be rejected and the policy dropped. Plus, insurance for vacant homes is expensive. It’s almost twice as much as typical home insurance. Occupied or not, you will still owe taxes on the property, which could cost thousands of dollars every year.
If the property is vacant, you need to ensure that the house is cared for in your absence. Otherwise, it may make the most sense to sell it altogether. But selling a vacant house in a typical market is not easy. For one, you have to keep the house neat. The utilities must function to allow home inspectors to check if electricity, gas, and more.
A better solution can be to sell the house to real estate investors. As reputable cash home buyers in Houston, we help homeowners sell their homes fast. We buy homes in Houston as-is, for cash, and in seven days. You don’t have to undertake repairs or worry about working with a realtor. We’ll take care of the closing and pay for it as well.
Do you need to sell your house fast in Houston? Call us for a free and fair offer in less than 24 hours.