What Is Condo Insurance?
Condo insurance provides coverage for the inside of your condominium; the external areas fall under the jurisdiction of your condo association and must be covered under the association’s insurance policy. Depending upon the specifics of your condominium association’s master policy, your condo insurance may include coverage for:
- The interior walls
- Your appliances
- Your personal property and valuables
In addition to covering your belongings in the event of a loss, your condo insurance also protects you against liability claims if you are responsible for another person’s injury or property damage, or you have legal fees to pay due to a lawsuit.
You can get the insurance you need for your condo and your valuable possessions by contacting your agent at InsureMart Inc. Your agent will help you compare rates from multiple insurance companies and choose the most suitable coverage for your needs.
What Does Condo Insurance Cover?
Condo insurance policies typically cover what the condo association’s master policy doesn’t cover. A condo association master policy can be of two types:
- An "all-in" condo master policy: Also known as a “single-unit” master policy, this type of policy covers the fixtures in your condo such as the appliances, wiring, plumbing, and carpets, but does not cover personal property that you own.
- A "bare walls-in" condo master policy: This policy does not cover anything contained within your walls. It may or may not cover your condo’s plumbing and electrical systems. Be sure to carefully review the association’s master policy to determine what your condo insurance policy needs to cover.
You will need to buy more of your own condominium insurance if your association has a “bare walls-in” condo master policy than if it has “all-in” condo master policy.
Your condo insurance policy will cover you for loss or damage to your personal possessions, and provide coverage for personal liability and medical payments. Additionally, it will often cover loss of use in the event that your condominium becomes badly damaged by a fire or storm and you need to live elsewhere during repairs. Insurance for a particular condo is known as an HO-6 policy. HO-6 policies typically provide you with coverage for a range of causes of loss. You may have to purchase additional coverage for specific items such as artwork, jewelry and other items of value.
How Does Condo Insurance Work?
Your condo association’s master policy, or HOA policy, will cover damage to your condo building, grounds and other external features. Your condominium policy therefore needs to cover your personal possessions, appliances, and sometimes installed fixtures and other attached features in the unit.
In the event of a covered loss, such as a burglary or fire, you will need to file a claim with your insurance company, and/or the condo association’s insurance company. For example, if your condominium was burglarized, most likely you will simply file a claim with your insurance company. However, if the burglary involved breaking and entering that destroyed an external doorway or if the external security experienced a failure that made the burglary possible, the claim may involve both your insurance company and the condo association policy.
When in doubt, be sure to consult with your insurance agent at InsureMart Inc.
Why Is Condo Insurance Important?
Condo association coverage will only cover the exterior of the condominium. For the interior and for your possessions, condo insurance will cover potential losses, such as theft of or damage from fire.
You also need to protect yourself from liability claims and lawsuits if someone is injured in your condo or you are responsible for damage to someone else's property. Note that liability often covers your responsibility for libel, slander, and other bodily injury claims. Because liability claims can lead to lawsuits, it is important to evaluate the amount of coverage you need to protect yourself financially.
How Much Condo Insurance Should I Have?
One of the first questions condominium owners ask after they buy is, “How much condo insurance should I get?” Basically, you can get a rough idea of how much insurance you need by performing an inventory of all your personal items and figuring out how much it would cost to replace your belongings after a burglary or fire. Certain valuable items may need special or additional coverage.
Let’s say, for example, that you have $10,000 worth of jewelry, $20,000 worth of furniture, and another $20,000 worth of electronics, clothing items and other personal items. The important things to check include whether your total coverage limits are set high enough, and whether any one item in your personal property inventory exceeds the “per-item limit.” For example, if you a diamond necklace worth $5,000, but your per-item limit for jewelry is $1,000, your insurance is not adequately covering your items.
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*Coverages may vary by state and by insured business. Consult your InsureMart Inc. agent about coverages you may need for your unique situation. Coverage descriptions above are for general information only. Actual coverage is subject to all terms, conditions and exclusions of the policy.