Before going into what condo insurance is all about, let’s take look at what’s condo means. A condo also known as a Condominium is a building of units or units in a complex that is owned privately. The space inside is owned by the condo owner, who is also the owner of a communal property share which includes the walls, floor, walkways, outside space, and stare wall.
What is condo insurance? Condo Insurance popularly referred to as an HO-6 insurance policy is a home insurance product that provides coverage for your personal belongings. As well as other improvements made to your unit. In other words, it is a coverage that helps to protect against repair costs and losses for a condo unit. It is a policy that is purchased by a condo unit owner.
Furthermore, Condo insurance often provides protection against water damage, fire damage, theft, vandalism, and many more. Also, it can help to cover legal costs if you are responsible for a guest injury or damage in your home and if you are displaced from your condominium temporarily due to damages covered by your policy.
Why do I need Condo Insurance?
All common areas in a condominium building are typically covered under a “Master insurance policy which is purchased by a homeowners association or condo association. Unless stated by the laws of the State. This includes both the building roof and exterior and internal areas such as hallways and elevators.
Although their insurance may cover the building, liability insurance, and commonly owned property, your own condo insurance policy still comes in handy. There are many whose insurance policy won’t cover you and your property like water damage to your living room walls, break-in, or guests injuring themselves due to slipping on your wet floor. And this is why you need condo insurance made specifically for condo owners.
These policies will help protect your personal property and your unit interior. You will also have liability protection for property damage and bodily injury done to others.
What does Condo Insurance Cover?
Generally, the HO-6 policy covers the same perils as the homeowners insurance policy does for single-family homes. Such as explosions, fire, and theft. Below is what condo insurance policies covers;
Dwelling – this helps to protect the interior and structure of your condo including damages to elements like flooring and sheetrock. The dwelling coverage you need depends on what is already covered by the Homeowners association policy. If you already have the all-in coverage, you may not need to include this coverage in your condo policy.
Personal Property; this covers belongings like TV, furniture, appliances, dishes, jewelry, musical instruments, and electronics. If they are damaged or stolen, this coverage may help to pay for or replace them.
Personal liability; Personal liability coverage covers expensive legal or medical fees if you are responsible for damage to someone’s property or injury. For instance, if you mistakenly drop a window AC unit on a neighbor’s porch or a friend falls in your condo. It covers hospital bills; court costs attorney fees and court settlements.
Loss of Use; this pays for additional living expenses like extra gas money hotel stay, laundry, and pet boarding if you cannot live in your condominium because the problem is covered by the condo policy.
Loss of assessment; if your condominium building exterior or shared space is damaged and there are still some remaining costs after the HOA master policy is paid out. Also, loss assessment can help you pay for the remaining cost so that you won’t have to pay yourself.
Medical Payment Coverage; Helps to pay for medical expenses like surgery, ambulance ride, or X-ray if someone gets injured in your condominium, regardless of the person at fault. Some Insurance companies offer $5,000 medical payment coverage while some insurers offer more
What Types of Damage Does Condo Insurance Cover?
Perils are events that cause problems or damage to your personal property or condo unit. Below are the perils covered by typical condo insurance;
- Windstorms and hail
- Riots or Civil commotion
- Falling Objects
- Damage done by other people’s vehicle
- Overflow or Accidental discharge of water or stream like a burst pipe
- Volcanic eruption
- Damage by aircraft
- Short circuits or power surges damage
- Weight of snow, ice, and sleet
If your personal belongings or condo units are damaged by any of the above hazards, you can likely file a claim with your condo insurer.
What is Not Covered by Condo Insurance?
In this section of the article are events that are not covered by the condo policy. Check them out below for your pleasure;
- Wear and tear
- Damages done by termites
- Government Action
- International loss
- Power failure
Also, Condo insurance will not cover any damage to shared areas of your condo complex. Including other properties your condo association owns. From your development’s party center to your building’s stairwell, your association’s master policy helps to protect your complex unit common areas.
How Much Does Condo Insurance Cost?
According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, the average cost of a condo policy is $622 per year. However, the costs significantly vary by state and certain factors. These factors include but are not limited to the Condominium location, security, age, condition, and claims history amongst others.
Generally, the lower your deductibles are or the higher your coverage limits, the higher your cost will be. Also, insurance companies usually charge higher for condominiums located in areas prone to disasters such as wildfires and hurricanes.
How to Get Condo Insurance
First of all, you have to choose the company you want to buy the policy from. Best condo insurance companies include; State Farm, Hippo, Erie, Geico, Lemonade, and USAA. Visit these insurers’ websites and request a quote online.
Compare quotes from different insurance companies. You can also contact their licensed representative to help you get the quote or just connect with a licensed independent agent closer to you. In addition, you can easily find an agent online.
What’s the difference between ho3 and HO6?
An HO-3 policy is the homeowners insurance policy while the HO-6 policy is made specifically for condos. An HO-3 policy only insures a single-family home with coverage for the whole3 building including free-standing structures like fences or sheds. Because condo owners do not own their buildings or the land, the HO-6 policy only covers their units and what is inside.
Is Condo Insurance Required?
Unlike auto insurance, laws in the state do not require condo insurance, however, institutions may. If you have a home loan on your condo, most lenders will require that you have condo insurance. Your Homeowners association may also give you certain insurance requirements. Most importantly it is always a good choice to be protected by insurance.
Will my condo insurance policy cover my medical expenses if I sustain an injury in my condo?
No, the medical payment coverage in this policy is included to cover medical expenses if a guest gets injured in your condominium. In other words, Standard condo policies will not cover your medical expenses if you get injured in your home.