When you have made a significant financial commitment to buy a condo, you want to take measures to protect your investment. This means taking out condo insurance.
Your condominium complex will have its own policy. But this won’t cover your individual condo and while it typically covers the outside of the building and common areas, it offers no protection to the inside of your unit or its contents.
When it comes to finding that master condo insurance policy that offers all the protection you need for the minimal cost, these are the five things that every condo owner should consider.
Which Plan Do You Need?
There are three common types of condo insurance. Each offers a different level of coverage and will apply to different condo owners’ needs. All in an all-inclusive coverage is exactly as it sounds. It covers everything from the outside of the unit, the inside, including fixtures and surfaces and installations. However, it doesn’t cover personal belongings that don’t make up the fixtures.
Special entity coverage covers the structure, including the fixtures and surfaces, but it won’t cover any structural improvements or additions to the original property structure. It also doesn’t cover belongings.
Finally, bare walls coverage covers just the structure. No interior contents, including bathroom and kitchen fixtures, are covered.
Should You Get Additional Coverage for Personal Belongings?
The answer is almost always yes. Think of any valuable jewellery you may have, furs, art collections, and electronics. If you are burgled and this is all stolen, without comprehensive coverage that includes your possessions, you will not receive any compensation.
Even if you do take out condo insurance which protects your personal belongings, check the policy limits to ensure your most valuable items are fully covered. If you have an expensive violin worth $50,000 but your policy is limited to $20,000, for example, you will not be able to claim for the full amount.
What Other Coverage Might You Need?
Once your structure, fixtures, surfaces and contents are insured, then you have the essentials covered. However, there are coverage options which can provide additional services. For example, some policies cover lock replacement charges or fire service callouts. Depending on your lifestyle these may be worth considering.
How Much Should You Expect to Pay?
Condo insurance varies from state to state and will depend on the coverage you require. Average premiums in somewhere like Iowa, for example, are around $200, but in Florida, they can soar to over $1,000 annually. Most states are around $500-$600 marks.
Check the Personal Liability Coverage
Before you decide on a policy, make sure you have checked the personal liability coverage. This coverage protects you in the event that someone gets injured on your property and files a personal injury claim. These cases do happen, and it is worth making yourself aware of the protection your coverage offers in the event of personal injury.
Your policy should cover all the bases and leave you fully protected in the worst-case scenario. Like a guardian angel, the best condo insurance policies stay out of sight and out of mind until you need them. Then if disaster strikes, they swoop in and protect you before a bad situation can be made worse.