Your condo unit is one of your most valuable possessions. Finding the right condo insurance policy can be complex at times. This guide will help you make the right insurance decision.
The Basics of Condo Insurance
If your condo suffers damage, you can receive assistance through your condo unit owner’s policy and the association master policy. The association master policy covers the exterior of your unit, all common property, and potential liability disputes. Your personal policy covers all of your personal belongings, and you also have liability coverage if you damage someone’s property, or a guest suffers an injury. Any issues regarding the interior unit should be noted in the condo laws and declarations. The condo association’s responsibilities may vary according to state law. Your policy and the master policy should work in sync to provide coverage if there is a claim. Keep in mind that you can always customize your policy.
Learn About Declarations
There are two distinct ways that an association master policy can be structured.
- All-in policies cover the interior walls, wiring, fixtures, floor coverings, and plumbing.
- Bare walls-in master policy does not cover any damage to your personal items.
You can also inquire about a hybrid policy where the association covers the interior of your unit based on the original specifications. Any upgrades that you make to the unit are your responsibility to insure. Make sure that you research the requirements thoroughly, as there are several variations alongside each condo association. The condo association declarations should outline every party’s responsibilities.
Research the Deductibles
The association master policy will include a deductible. Over the last decade, research shows that associations prefer to carry high deductibles to keep insurance costs down. Deductibles may range as high as $20,000. Your condo insurance policy should provide enough coverage to take care of any loss within the deductible limit. You should also add loss assessment coverage that takes care of assessments made by the association to recoup the deductible.
Figure out the Replacement Costs
Once you have a clear idea of which parts of the interior structure are your responsibility, you will have to figure out an accurate figure for replacement cost coverage. If your unit is damaged due to a fire or tornado, you want to have enough coverage to replace the appliances, lighting fixtures, and flooring. Consult with a contractor to receive a good estimate. Make sure that your coverage is high enough to provide a safety net if a devastating catastrophe causes the construction price to rise.
Take inventory to figure out an estimate for replacing all of your personal belongings. Figure out the cost by going to each room. Your policy should cover any damage to your furniture, clothing, and electronics. If you have luxury items in your condo, such as expensive artwork or jewelry, you might need to get them insured separately.
Get Additional Coverage
There are multiple types of coverage you can add to your condo insurance policy for extra protection.
- Special perils coverage provides extra coverage if your unit is damaged by a unique disaster.
- Replacement coverage covers your personal items without deducting depreciation.
- Valuable items coverage protects luxury items such as jewelry and art.
- Water backup coverage covers your property if it suffers damage due to water backup from the drains or sewers.
Once you have completed your research, you can find the right policy to protect your condo. If you have any questions about your condo insurance coverage, contact our experts at The Reardon Agency today. We are here to assist you with all your unique insurance needs.
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