Even though your condominium association has insurance for the building where your condo is located, not everything is insured within the structure. Just like someone who rents an apartment, condominium owners need to get condo insurance to help protect losses of personal belongings inside their unit along with the interior of your unit.
Condominium insurance is designed to cover aspects of your unit that are not typically covered by your association’s general policy. The type of insurance that your association provides covers the condominium building, commonly owned property and liability insurance for all buildings in the association. Association liability insurance does not cover incidents that occur in your individual unit. However, personal insurance does. To determine exactly what is covered in your association’s policy, ask for a copy before determining your own coverage. By doing so, you won’t purchase duplicate coverage. Some associations opt for policies that cover items in your unit other than personal property as well as any fixtures or improvements that you make to your condo after purchase.
Typical condo insurance policies cover losses arising from fire, smoke, lighting, windstorms, vandalism or malicious mischief, theft and accidental discharge of water. Personal liabilities covering medical expenses of individuals injured on your property are also included. Insurance for your condominium provides comprehensive coverage, but some types of damage are normally not covered under general policies. Examples include water damage from floods, earthquakes and mudslides, damaged caused by building settlement, deterioration, contamination or nuclear hazard or damage caused by domestic animals, rodents, birds or insects. Liability may not include bodily injury or property damaged incurred by business activities or professional services.
Other types of coverage typically included in condo policies may include loss of use, which provides money for staying in an alternate location if your condo is uninhabitable and additional living expenses, absentee ownership for individuals who rent out their unit to others, temporary repairs and debris removal. Policyholders generally are allowed to select the maximum amount of liability payments for medical and personal property damage.