Condo insurance coverage in Alberta
Condo coverage varies from one condo corporation to another, so it’s important to get that information from the condominium association when you’re looking at purchasing. Then you’ll have a good idea of where your own condo insurance needs to fill in and our insurance brokers can help you find the best policy for you.
Some policies will cover temporary living expenses if you need to evacuate, or your unit becomes uninhabitable due to a claim. The best condo insurance has add-on options for improvements and betterments as well as loss assessment coverage or even more depending what kind of coverage you’re looking for.
Communal living comes with added risk. If you cause a loss, you’re more likely to affect the people living around you – or even the entire building. And if you’re found responsible for the loss of the entire building, it could leave you in financial ruin. You get $2 million automatically in personal liability coverage to protect you when you’re at fault, or when you’re deemed responsible for property damages or injuries sustained by others, but you’ll want to check with the condo board or your mortgage company to see if there’s a minimum of liability coverage required by them.
Liability coverage is the bare minimum amount of coverage you can have for a property. Your condo board or lender will probably require more, but you’ll want to check with both to see if there’s a minimum of liability coverage you need. Liability is your legal responsibility to pay for damages and medical expenses if someone gets hurt on your property.
Your unit’s interior and private enclosures
Condo insurance covers the costs to replace or repair property within your unit. You may be able to file a complaint if a pipe bursts and causes water damage. Or if a hailstorm breaks your window and ruins part of your unit or private outdoor areas.
You can elect specific amounts of coverage for the personal property you keep in your home. This amount will depend on what type of personal property you have, such as fine jewelry and electronics. You’ll need to estimate what it would cost for you to replace your personal belongings for your insurance agent.
It’s important to adjust this coverage as the value of your personal items changes. For example, if you buy a computer, more electronics, or fine art.
Improvements and betterments
Improvements and betterments are upgrades and enhanced features you’ve added to your unit since you’ve owned it. This portion of your insurance policy also covers upgrades made to your unit by any previous owners.
Most builders of condominiums provide standard features to owners that are covered in the base selling price of the unit. When owners decide to add upgrades during the building process or after they’ve moved in, insurance policies need to account for the unit’s increased value.
A home with upgraded kitchen appliances, cosmetic improvements, and other features that aren’t found in other units often justifies a higher resale price. Consequently, if your unit sustains damage or is destroyed, your policy will need to reimburse you accordingly. A policy typically covers what it would cost you to find a similar replacement home with identical or “like” features.
Contingent and loss assessment
While your condo association takes out a master policy for the entire building covering hazards to the exterior and common areas, it may not be enough. This is where contingent and loss assessment coverage comes in. As an individual unit owner, you will get this important coverage included in your policy with the option to increase the automatic amounts of coverage if needed.
The added coverage helps you pay for damages and losses to areas that impact your unit that would normally fall under your association’s coverage.
Deductible buy up
This coverage is there for you to help with assessments made against you by your condo board where the damage does not exceed the condominium board’s deductible. This coverage is provided automatically with a base coverage, check with your condo board to see what their deductible is and additional coverage can be purchased to top your policy up if needed.