Sometimes, people talk to us about unoccupied property insurance because they are thinking of bidding for an empty house at auction. Properties that are in need of complete renovation often appear in auction catalogues rather than on agent’s websites and if you are keen on a building project it is worth keeping an eye on the auction sales.

The important thing to remember is that if your bid is accepted you will be committed to buying the house; just like exchanging contracts. Therefore you need to do all the homework in advance and this can be a problem because there may not be much time between spotting the property and the date of the sale.

Here are a few points to think about:

• View as soon as you can and research the house and the area.

• Get the particulars to your solicitor so the legal work can be done before the sale.

• Speak to surveyors and builders.

• Arrange your finance in good time.