Using an agent: The pros and cons
Although you'll have to pay a fee, it might be worth signing up to a property management agent, especially if you're planning on renting your holiday home out or leaving it empty for long periods of time.
An agent will be able to handle day-to-day problems as they occur, clean the house and answer questions from tenants, which can be reassuring if you're miles away. You can arrange for them to hold the keys for you, and make regular visits to the house to check it's well maintained. But this can be expensive, so may not be right for you if your budget's already stretched.
What if there's a problem with your holiday home?
Having your relaxing holiday ruined by a domestic problem can be a second home owner's worst nightmare. It's worth making a list of trusted local handymen such as electricians, plumbers and builders who you can call on if something does go wrong. Ask around with friends and neighbours to find out who's recommended. If your holiday home is in an isolated area, knowing there's someone on hand to help can be invaluable.
John Lewis Specialist Home Insurance can give you peace of mind with a 24-hour Home Emergency Service. If you arrive to find your heating, electricity or plumbing system has broken down, you've been infested by rats or mice or your locks have been damaged, you're covered for up to £1500 for parts and labour.
How to protect your home and its contents
It's essential that you take out a good insurance policy to protect your investment and your belongings. Many people automatically assume that you're 'safer' in a peaceful holiday location, but turning up at your holiday home to find you've been burgled is a traumatic experience, especially if you keep a lot of personal items there.
Knowing you're insured will give you peace of mind when you're far away, and it's worth looking into a specialist holiday home insurance policy.
John Lewis Specialist Home Insurance covers second homes abroad, as well as in the UK. You can relax wherever you are in the world, safe in the knowledge that your holiday home and its contents – including art and antiques - are insured. It also covers those costly things you don't always think about, such as heating oil and outdoor items. There's also cover for replacement locks and keys if they're lost or stolen.
Find out more