Is your condo or townhouse insured properly?

(July 23, 2012, posted in Home Improvement)

Are you properly insured in your condo or town home? Are you covered in the event of a fire, flood, or other damage to your building or to your strata unit?

Most strata home owners carry contents insurance for the personal belongings inside their home and trust that the strata insurance will cover any costs associated with the buildings and common property. In actual fact the strata corporation's insurance policy insures the building exterior and the common property. It also insures the inside of your home (walls, floors, cabinets and fixtures) that were installed at the time the building was constructed.

Strata insurance policies DO NOT cover you for the following:
  • Any upgrades you have made to your home since original construction such as a new kitchen or bathroom, new counters or new floors.
  • Personal contents such as furniture, jewelry, clothing, personal items and art.
  • The cost of living expenses if you cannot live in your home while repairs are made in the event of damage to your home.
  • Liability insurance for visitors
  • The cost of damages to your neighbour's property from your suite for example water damage from a leaky washing machine.
Additionally, and probably the largest expense is the cost of the insurance deductible for strata corporations. Your strata corporation may have insurance in the event of damage however the deductible for this insurance can be as much as $30,000. If you are deemed to be responsible for the insurance claim, strata can find you liable for the payment of this deductible.

Talk to your insurance provider today and ensure that you are adequately covered. Make sure that you inform your insurance advisor of any upgrades you have made to your home and their value. This applies for both tenants and landlords and a qualified insurance provider will be able to outline the best policy for your situation. Often these changes to your policy can make very little difference to the cost of your overall payments but they can save you a lot of money in the long term.

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