Whether you live in a house, a condominium or a rental unit, the Kanetix.ca property and home insurance Quickguides will help you understand the ins and outs of choosing an insurance policy that fits your needs.
If you own your own house, then you'll want to protect not only your physical building, but all the things in your house too. A standard house insurance policy will ensure that if something like fire, vandalism or theft occurs, then you will be properly looked after and your valuables will be replaced.
You also need to think about protecting any other structures that exist on your property, like a detached garage. As well, in the event that your house is damaged, and you need to move out for a while, you may want to consider investing in insurance that will help pay for out-of-pocket expenses like hotel rooms and food.
As a homeowner, it is possible you may be held liable for accidents that people have while on your property. What's more, you may accidentally damage other people's belongings either in your own house, or somewhere else. A well-structured house insurance plan will make sure that you're covered for any of these unforeseeable events.
Tenant or renters insurance
If you're moving into your first apartment, you might think you don't have anything of real value. A CD player, computer and some clothes may not look as if it's worth much, but when you have to replace it with something new, it could break your budget. Say you've bought a computer on credit and it's destroyed by fire or stolen. You're still responsible for paying the balance to your creditor, even though you no longer have the item.
As a tenant or renter in someone else's building, it's a wise decision to take out a tenant insurance policy. It protects both your contents and your liability exposure. You see, as a tenant, you're responsible for harm you might cause to any part of the building you live in, or to others who live or visit there. If you forgot to turn off the water in the bathtub while you're talking to your friend, you could flood out your neighbours. You would be responsible to repair any resulting damages.
When you purchase a condominium, you own your "unit". A condominium insurance policy provides coverage for your personal property, structural improvements to your unit and additional living expenses if you are the victim of fire, theft or other disaster listed in your policy. You will get liability protection to protect you for harm you might cause to any part of the building you live in or to others who live in or visit the condominium complex. An important feature of your condo insurance policy is loss assessment. As a condominium owner, you share responsibility with others in your building for common property. Loss assessment protects you from damage to these common areas. See the condo coverage section for more details.
Limitations in house insurance, condo insurance or tenants insurance policy coverage
Your standard house insurance, condo insurance or tenants insurance policy will have limitations in theft coverage for jewellery and furs, silverware, business property, bicycles, money, boat and motor. If you own any of these special items, it's a good idea to consider adding additional coverage to your policy.
Paying a house insurance, condo insurance or tenants insurance deductible
When you make a claim, a small portion of the claim is always paid by you first, then your insurance company pays the rest. The portion you pay is called your deductible. The amount of your deductible affects the price of your insurance policy. The higher your deductible, the less the cost of your insurance premium.
Property and home insurance quickguides
- Introduction to property insurance in Canada
- Standard home coverages
- Standard condo coverages
- Standard tenant or renters coverage
- Beyond basic coverage
- How insurance is calculated
- How to reduce your insurance premium
- Taking advantage of insurance discounts
- Special situations