Today we are going to answer the question “Do I need condo insurance?”
We have a team of highly experienced real estate agents and we would love to put our expertise to work for you.
We’ll let you know if and when you need to get condo insurance and what the advantages are for you. So let’s get started.
If you get a mortgage to purchase your condo, you will need to get condo insurance
Do I Need Condo Insurance?
Yes, if You Have a Mortgage; No, if You Don’t
Mortgage: If you need to have a mortgage to buy your condo, then your lending institution will require you to have condo insurance. Your lender will want to see proof of your insurance before they will release your funds to you. Your broker will send this proof to them.
No Mortgage: If you don’t have a mortgage on your condo, then you don’t need condo insurance. However, even though condo insurance is not a legal requirement in Ontario, it is still a good idea to have it whether you have a mortgage or not.
Condo insurance protects your future earnings on your investment
Benefits of Having Condo Insurance
Condo insurance can give you peace of mind and will offset any potential losses that you might incur. It will also help protect your future earnings on your investment.
What Does Condo Insurance Cover?
Condo insurance can offer you five different areas of protection:
- Your personal property will be replaced
- You will be covered if you can’t stay in your condo
- You will be covered for any upgrades you made
- You will be covered for personal liability
- You will also get what is known as common elements loss assessment
Condo insurance covers much more than just the replacement of your personal belongings
Your Personal Property Will Be Replaced
Your condo insurance policy will give you specific details about your coverage amounts for your personal property. Your coverage will include the cost to repair or replace your personal possessions if they get damaged, lost, destroyed, or stolen.
Personal items that are protected by your policy include:
- Items in your condo
- Items temporarily stored outside of your condo such as in a storage unit or locker
- Items taken with you on a holiday
Please note that often there will be special limits applied to valuable items such as jewellery and bicycles. You need to check these limits and discuss them with your broker.
If you have unique or extremely valuable items, then let your broker know so they can make sure that your are properly covered.
You may also need to show receipts or proof of purchase to your insurance company to prove that you owned those more expensive items.
You should take pictures or have receipts for more expensive items
You Will Be Covered if You Can’t Stay in Your Condo
If you are temporarily unable to stay in your condo after you have a claim, for example, after a fire or a flood, then your condo insurance will cover the living expenses that you might incur during this time. For instance, you would be covered for things like:
- Hotel fees
- Restaurant food
- Immediate clothing and personal items
- Maintenance fees on your condo that you would normally have been required to pay
Your condo insurance will also cover your lost rental income if you are renting out your unit and your tenant is forced to leave while it is being repaired.
Your condo insurance will cover your hotel stay if you have to move out during repairs
You Will Be Covered for Any Upgrades You Made
If you have upgraded your condo by doing improvements to your unit such as installing hardwood flooring, plantation shutters, or granite countertops, your condo insurance will make sure that you get those same upgrades installed again instead of the basic, standard grade finishing that your builder originally installed.
It will also cover the replacement of any expensive appliances that you have invested in, such as a custom gas fireplace, sub-zero refrigerator, or a restaurant grade gas stove.
Condo insurance will cover any upgrades you have made to your unit
You Will Be Covered for Personal Liability
Even though your condo association will have liability insurance, it will only cover accidents or injuries that people have in the common areas of the building.
If someone gets hurt inside your unit, and they decide to take action against you, you won’t be covered. Your condo insurance will cover this. Liability insurance will also cover you if you or a member of your family damages another person’s personal property.
In the past, a 1 million dollar coverage was the usual amount, however, more and more people are going for a 2 million dollar coverage to be on the safe side. Ask for a quote for both. You will probably be surprised at the relatively insignificant price difference between the two.
You will be covered if someone gets injured inside your unit
You Will Also Get What Is Known as Common Elements Loss Assessment
As we said above, your condo association will have liability insurance for anyone who gets injured in the common areas of your building. However, this type of insurance usually has a huge deductible.
The association will split this deductible among all of the condo owners. Your condo insurance can protect you from this type of unexpected cost.
Loss assessment can also cover a situation where damages to the building exceed the amount of the condo association’s policy. Any charges above this maximum amount will be split among the condo owners. Your insurance will cover your share if this happens.
If damages to the condo building exceed the amount of the condo association's policy then your portion will be covered
How Much Is Condo Insurance?
Condo insurance is relatively inexpensive. In fact, it is much less expensive than home insurance. The amount you pay will depend on a number of factors including:
- The insurance company you choose
- Where your condo is located
- The amount of coverage you want
- Your own personal insurance history
Taking all of these factors into consideration, you can get condo insurance for as little as $300 a year.
Need Help Purchasing a Condo? KW Condo Living Can Help
You can rely on the KW Condo Living team to help you find your perfect home. We work hard to earn our customers’ respect and we promise to earn yours as well. We know the Kitchener Waterloo area well because we live and work here.
If you are looking for your dream home in the Kitchener Waterloo area, KW Condo Listings can help. We know the condo market inside out and we can help match you up with your perfect condo. Contact us today to begin your search.