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Condo owners are covered under their condo corporation’s policy, but that policy doesn’t cover them for their own personal use.
A condo corporation’s insurance policy is meant to only cover the structure as well as common areas. This means it does not cover the contents in your unit. This is why condo residents need their own condo insurance policy.
You hope that you’ll never need to use your condo insurance coverage, but accidents happen. And they can set you back financially if you’re paying out of pocket what would typically be covered by a condo insurance policy. This is one of the most important reasons why investing in condo insurance is a good idea.
What is condo insurance?
Condo insurance is coverage for your personal belongings and protection against lawsuits. In the event of an incident like a theft, vandalism or fire, your policy would cover the cost of repairs to your property or replacement of your belongings.
Do I need condo insurance?
Like a homeowner, condo owners need insurance for their home. It’s easy to assume you’ll be covered under your condo corporation’s policy, but that’s not the case. Your condo corporation’s policy is not meant for personal use for its building residents.
It’s important to have a condo insurance policy as it provides you coverage for your personal property as well as your liability in case someone visiting your home gets hurt or injured.
There are four components that make up insurance for condo owners.
Your belongings: Your stuff, from what’s hanging in your closet to what’s in your entertainment unit. It’s all replaceable (except the sentimental things), but the cost to replace everything from your clothes, furniture, appliances, electronics and whatever else you need would likely add up to a big sum that isn’t easily affordable.
Liability: Financial protection if you’re held liable for the following:
- an accident that causes bodily injury to others
- an accident that causes property damage
- · a shortfall in your condo corporation’s coverage
Have a rug that seems to slip underfoot? Close the balcony door too fast on a friend’s foot? These are times when having liability coverage under your condo insurance policy is a financial life saver.
Besides protecting you from the costs of being sued, you’re also protected in the event you accidentally cause damage to the building you live in because of a kitchen fire or your washing machine goes on the fritz and floods the unit below yours.
Living expenses: If your condo is undergoing repairs after an insured loss, your coverage will help you cover some of the additional living expenses that will occur, such as storage, moving costs, a hotel room and more.
Unit upgrades: If you want to protect unit upgrades the value of the improvements will be protected in the event of damage or a loss caused by a fire. Always make sure you let your insurer know that you’ve made upgrades to your unit, so that they can update your condo insurance policy to include the improvements.
A standard condominium insurance policy doesn’t cover expensive items like rare art, precious stones, antiques, china, silverware, sporting equipment or collectibles. To cover high-value items, you would need to get additional coverage for those items, called an endorsement. If you want to get an endorsement for a high-value item, you may need to provide an appraisal or receipt in order to get coverage.
The cost can vary from unit to unit, city to city, and province to province.
When calculating your condo insurance rate, factors that insurers consider are:
- Coverage options you choose
- Limitations of your policy
You may find that condo insurance coverage will cost you $250-$350 per year for $50,000 in contents coverage. If you need more coverage, then your annual premium will be higher.
The difference between homeowners insurance and condo insurance is how much of your home you have to insure. As a condo owner, when you purchase condo insurance, you’re covering your unit. The condo building structure as well as the common areas are jointly owned by you and other condo dwellers, and are insured by your homeowners association (HOA), which you and others collectively pay every month.
As the condo owner, you need to have a landlord insurance policy and request that your tenant purchase renters insurance.
The reason why is that landlord insurance will cover unit upgrades and improvements such as fixtures like floors and countertops. It won’t cover property damage caused by the tenant, and also won’t cover the tenants personal belongings.
By requesting your tenant to get renters insurance, you would be reducing your risk of having to cover repairs and replacement costs caused by damage your tenant is responsible for.
Make sure you set up your condo insurance policy before you move in to your unit so that you, your unit and your personal belongings are protected, should anything go wrong. Insuring a condo is as easy as comparing condo insurance rates. It takes minutes, and all you have to do is pick the condo insurance quote that’s right for you.
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