Property Tax Expense

You must continue to pay property tax on your vacant house. If you choose to ignore the property tax bill, a tax lien will be placed on the property which must be paid in full when you sell the property later.

Insurance Expense / Loss of Coverage / Liability

You should have insurance on the property to cover damage and liability. This is a recurring expense. By the way, if your vacant house has been unoccupied for over 30 days, it may no longer be covered by homeowners insurance if it gets damaged. Contact your insurance company and inform them your property is vacant and you want the house to be properly insured as an unoccupied house.

Utilities Expense

Your vacant house will suffer damage if it is not properly heated during the winter months. For example, pipes can crack if the temperature drops below the freezing point.


Your vacant house may become a target for vandalism. It is common to see broken windows on vacant houses. Thieves like to steal the outside air conditioner unit. They may decided to break into the house and steal building materials. Copper pipes are a favorite item for thieves. Additionally, those who break into  your vacant house may decide to cause damage just to get a thrill, such as kicking holes in the walls and doors or  breaking counter tops and shelving units.

Vacant Houses Lose Value

Your vacant house is losing value. In addition to the expenses of owning the house (taxes, insurance, and utilities), your vacant house loses value every day. It is a liability draining you of money now and will fetch you a lower price the longer you wait to sell. The structure is deteriorating every day. How likely is it that housing prices will suddenly take a sharp upward turn so that the value of your house increases faster than the value it is losing every day it sits vacant?



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