Purchasing a condominium is a great way to have a sense of ownership without many of the hassles associated with owning a home. Although the Condominium Association of a condominium complex will often take responsibility for the landscaping, roof, and exterior walls of a unit, condo owners are still responsible for the interior and for their personal belongings. Condo insurance, also known as an HO-6 policy, is the best way to make sure your belongings are protected from damage or theft. It will also protect the owner from liability claims should someone get injured while visiting. Some things to think about when considering a Condo insurance policy include the following:
- Condo insurance is very similar to Homeowners insurance. As with a Homeowners policy, Condo insurance will protect against fire, weather, theft and vandalism. Other perils, however, such as earthquakes and flooding are often excluded from Condo policies. For these perils, an endorsement to the policy would be required. Or, depending on the insurance company, a completely separate policy might be required to fully cover your property.
- Liability coverage is included with most Condo insurance policies. So in the event that someone is injured while on your property, the insurance will cover the medical expenses. This can prevent litigation or the need for you to pay for those medical bills yourself. This is often the least expensive part of a Condo insurance policy, so make sure you get enough liability coverage to address a worst-case scenario.
- When purchasing Condo insurance, it’s just as important to understand what your Condominium Association policy covers as it is to understand what your personal Condo insurance covers. There are three types of master policies that your Condo Association would purchase:
- “Bare Walls Coverage” provides the least amount of protection. Simply put, only the walls of the structure are insured. Individual condo owners would be responsible for insuring fixtures like sinks, built-in cabinets, flooring, etc.
- “Single Entity Coverage” increases the coverage from a “Bare Walls” policy in that common fixtures as well as the walls are insured. Exclusions typically include any renovations or improvements that the individual condo owner has made.
- “All-Inclusive Coverage” also known as “All-In Coverage” is a type of policy purchased by the Association which would cover all fixtures and all improvements made by individual condo owners. With this policy, the unit owners are only responsible for their personal property.
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