A common misconception among condo owners is that if the building is insured then they are protected from potential loss. This is not so. Condo associations have a master policy that covers the property, common areas and the physical structure of the building. However, that coverage does not protect any personal property within the walls of the unit or their liability should someone be injured in their condo. It is very important for owners of condo units to obtain their own individual insurance policy for their condo unit because the association’s policy does not provide coverage for many of the situations that a condo owner might encounter. You’ve worked hard to earn what you have and it should be protected against life’s unexpected events. Our experienced insurance consultants can help ensure you have the proper condo insurance coverage for your new or existing condo. Call us today for a consultation at 800.333.3690.
Understanding Your Condo Insurance Policy
Additions and Alterations Coverage
The additions and alterations coverage includes upgrades in your unit like hardwood floors, tiles, carpeting, wall covering, recessed lighting, cabinets, custom built-ins; anything that was not standard in your unit. The coverage for your unit through the association may only cover standard upgrades, leaving this important additional coverage up to you. The additions and alterations coverage will allow you to replace the upgrades in your unit. A standard grade policy through the association only allows coverage up to $1,000. We suggest adding this important policy upgrade in case the association policy does not provide the protection and coverage you need for your upgrades.
Personal Property Coverage
Personal Property coverage provides protection for your furniture and personal possessions against such covered hazards as fire, lightning, windstorm, hail, explosion, collapse, smoke or vandalism. Did you know that theft is one of the most common losses among condo policy owners? The condominium owner’s policy also protects your property against practically every type of theft loss in your condo or anywhere in the world.
Personal Liability Insurance
This coverage protects the unit owner in the event they accidentally hurt other people or cause damage to another unit by an occurrence in the unit owner’s condo. For example, the condo owner would be covered if they accidentally left a tea kettle on the stove causing a fire that spread to the surrounding units, damaging personal property in those homes. Depending on the association, coverage requirements for liability insurance can be as much as $1,000,000. Be sure to review all association documents to understand the association board requirements.
Additional Living Expenses
Additional living expense insurance is intended to cover the extra expenses incurred if your condo becomes uninhabitable as a result of a covered loss. For example, if your unit is damaged and you have to move out while it’s being repaired. The policy will cover the necessary increases in living expenses (hotel, meals, laundry, etc.), so you can maintain your normal standard of living.
Condominium coverage provides up to $1,000 of protection against financial loss if damage to commonly owned property exceeds the amount of coverage in the condo association master policy. If your condo association is forced to assess all unit owners for the additional loss (or for personal liability claims against the association), assessment insurance will help protect you.
Whenever you are unclear about your policy, you can contact HomeServices Insurance Maryland at 800.333.3690 to assist you.