Condominium Insurance

Condo insurance is a policy that is purchased by the owner of a condo unit. It is known as an HO-6 policy type.  It generally helps pay to repair your unit and provides protection for your belongings from perils such as fire or vandalism, theft, water damage, and more depending on your specific policy.

Condominium coverages typically include:

Building Property Protection (Dwelling additions & Alterations) Covers building additions and alterations made to the condo such as cabinets and/or carpeting

Personal Liability Coverage Covers the costs of legal fees or court order payments, if you or your pet is legally responsible for someone else’s damages or injuries.  You can choose how much liability coverage you’d like and limits can range anywhere from $25,000 up to $500,000 (depending on the insurance carrier) per policy period.

Guest Medical Coverage Provides for protection for people that are accidentally injured either at the residence or by the insured elsewhere.

Personal Property Coverage Pays to repair or replace your belongings, up to specified limits, and is never included under the condo’s master insurance policy. Anything that isn’t permanently attached to your condo is considered your personal property, including clothing, furniture, and electronics.

Loss of Use “aka” Additional Living Expenses – pays for additional living expenses above what you normally spend, when your condo cannot be occupied due to a covered loss.  These expenses may include meals and hotel stays, if you’re forced to move out of your condo while your unit is being repaired or rebuilt.

Endorsements (these are extra coverages you can add to your policy that aren’t typically included in an HO-6 policy)  Some examples include: Fungi, Wet or Dry Rot Bacteria Coverage, Backup of Sewers and Drains, Credit Card, Electronic Fund Transfer Card or Access Device, Forgery and Counterfeit Money Coverage, Fur and/or Jewelry Coverage.

The difference between homeowner’s versus condo insurance is, when you own your home, you typically own everything inside the home, including its structure and the land where the house sits.  When you own a condominium, the actual building where there are multiple condominium units , the halls, land, and common areas used by all tenants, are not owned by you when you are the condo owner.  Because this part of your condo is owned by someone else, you are not responsible for insuring the entire building or these common areas.  You are only responsible for the space within your walls, because you cannot insure something you do not own (there must be insurable interest), and your personal property in most cases.

Therefore, when you purchase a condo policy you will be purchasing coverage for what is sometimes known as the “walls-in” and for your personal property.

Three Types of HOA insurance (master insurance policies):

  1. All-in coverage: Also known as “all inclusive” and the most comprehensive of the three coverages, insuring all property in your development and fixtures in your unit. With all-in coverage, your only responsibility is to cover your personal belongings.
  2. Bare walls coverage: Covers shared areas, including property owned by the condo/homeowners association, but won’t extend to interior walls and fixtures in your unit.
  3. Single entity coverage: Insures common areas and association-owned property but, unlike bare walls coverage, also offers coverage for fixtures in your unit and any part of your unit’s structure from when it was originally built.

I encourage everyone to find out what areas or parts of the building they will be responsible for insuring before purchasing a condo.  Also make sure you find out, from your condo association, whether you are responsible for things like; water damage, plumbing issues, mold, electrical work or issues because you may need to purchase additional coverage on your condo.  And, make sure this information is included in your condo associations master policy.

Another reason for finding out what is and isn’t covered by your condo association is to avoid duping coverage – there’s no point in covering something they are already covering.

If you plan on upgrading your condo with new appliances, new cabinets, or flooring, and this is stated to be covered in your associations policy, make sure the policy limits are able to cover the cost of your loss should a fire or other peril destroy your condo.

As with any policy type, consult with your agent and ask what they recommend and make an informed decision based on those recommendations and your needs.

 

Serving: Columbus, Pickerington, Central Ohio, Delaware County Ohio and surrounding areas

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