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A standard condo insurance policy includes four essential types of coverage. They include:

  • Coverage for the structure of your Condo
  • Additions and Alterations coverage
  • Coverage for your personal belongings
  • Additional living expenses
  • The structure of your Condo
  • Liability protection.

Structure of your Condo

This part of your policy pays to repair or rebuild your condo if it is damaged or destroyed by fire, hurricane, hail, lightning or other disaster listed in your policy. It will not pay for damage caused by a flood, earthquake or routine wear and tear.

Additions and Alterations coverage
When purchasing coverage for the structure of your condo, it is important to buy enough to rebuild the inside of it. You may have upgraded from the base model, installed ceramic flooring instead of vinyl, etc… You would want to review your Unit’s Master Policy, so there is no coverage gaps in the event of damage to your Condo

Your personal belongings
Your furniture, clothes, sports equipment and other personal items are covered if they are stolen or destroyed by fire, hurricane or other insured disaster.  The best way to determine what is enough coverage is to conduct a home inventory.

This part of your policy also includes off-premises coverage. This means that your belongings are covered anywhere in the world, unless you have decided against off-premises coverage. Some companies limit the amount to 10% of the amount of insurance you have for your possessions.

Expensive items like jewelry, furs and silverware are covered, but there are usually dollar limits if they are stolen. Generally, you are covered for between $1,000 to $2,000 for all of your jewelry and furs. To insure these items to their full value, purchase a special personal property endorsement or floater and insure the item for it’s appraised value. Coverage includes “accidental disappearance,” meaning coverage if you simply lose that item. You could also then choose to have a deductible or not.

Additional living expenses (ALE)
This pays the additional costs of living away from home if you cannot live there due to damage from a fire, storm or other insured disaster. It covers hotel bills, restaurant meals and other expenses, over and above your customary living expenses, incurred while your home is being rebuilt.

Keep in mind that the ALE coverage in your Condo policy has limits, usually a percentage of the amount of coverage you have on your contents, and some policies include a time limitation. But the amount of ALE coverage is separate from the amount available to rebuild or repair your Condo. 

Coverage for ALE differs from company to company. You can increase this coverage, for an additional premium. Some companies sell a policy that provides an unlimited amount of loss-of-use coverage, but for a limited amount of time.

Liability protection
Liability covers you against lawsuits for bodily injury or property damage that you or family members cause to other people. It also pays for damage caused by your pets. So, if your son, daughter or dog accidentally ruins your neighbor’s expensive rug, you are covered. However, if they destroy your rug, you are not covered.

The liability portion of your policy pays for both the cost of defending you in court and any court awards—up to the limit of your policy. You are also covered not just in your home, but anywhere in the world.
Liability limits generally start at about $100,000. However, experts recommend that you purchase at least $300,000 worth of protection. Some people feel more comfortable with even more coverage. You can purchase an umbrella or excess liability policy which provides broader coverage, including claims against you for libel and slander, as well as higher liability limits. Generally, umbrella policies cost between $200 to $350 for $1 million of additional liability protection.

Your policy also provides no-fault medical coverage. In the event a friend or neighbor is injured in your home, he or she can simply submit medical bills to your insurance company. This way, expenses are paid without a liability claim being filed against you. You can generally get $1,000 to $5,000 worth of this coverage. It does not, however, pay the medical bills for your family or your pet.

We can help you make sure you have appropriate Condominium coverage. We will help you assess your risks and find the best policies for your needs.  Contact us today to learn more.