Insurance is like an assurance; it is always a better feeling to know that you are covered and safe in your home. Considering the condo Toronto market, condos are the most popular housing option in the city. Therefore, people feel comfortable and confident, knowing that they have condo insurance.
Having coverage for your personal belongings is like having support for your worse times. It becomes a mandate to look for best condo insurance companies to make sure you get the best plan for your unit.
What Do You Mean by Condo Insurance?
It is not always a mandate to have insurance for your condo. However, it can be helpful in situations when, as a condo owner, you have to deal with extra expenses that you did not anticipate. There is an insurance that is provided to the owner by the condo corporation.
This is by the condo association or syndicate of co-owners. However, this type of insurance covers only the primary structure, along with common spaces that are part of the entire project.
Apart from these common spaces and the building structure, there are many other items and spaces as well that are the responsibility of the owner only. There are other things like condo improvements, loss assessments, and personal belongings that the building coverage does not cover.
This is when the need to get reliable condo insurance coverage comes in.
At first, the insurance agency evaluates the limit for your belongings. After evaluation, it provides 10x of that amount as a single limit. This covers all the things mentioned above that are necessary but are not covered by the building coverage.
This separate condo insurance covers much more than the coverage by the condo insurance association. There are multiple factors and clauses that are a part of condo insurance that you need to take in addition to the condo insurance coverage being provided to you by the corporation. In the end, it is crucial to be sure of the type of insurance that you opted for.
Crucial Terms That You Must Understand
There are some basic terms that you should know when you discuss property insurances. Here are a few that you must know.
• Personal liability coverage will protect you in terms of finances in case someone got injured unintentionally or has some property damage at your residence.
• All-risk coverage for the things that you have in the unit, along with the improvements and enhancements that were made in the unit. This will basically protect you from losses that you might suffer from in cases of risks.
• The term Replacement Cost means that in the case of a claim, all the items will be repaired to the original condition. In case that is not possible, the items will be replaced with new of like quality and kind.
• There is also additional living expenses coverage that will help you to pay for all the additional costs that are reasonable and also necessary. However, these are majorly applicable only in a situation where you have to leave your condo following a covered loss.
• There is also the coverage of loss assessment, which helps in providing protection in situations when the condo unit owner is financially responsible for any damage to the building, or shared areas, or third party injuries in the common areas. In such situations, the insurance company will pay for a part of a loss to the common area.
What’s the Difference Between a Condo’s and a Homeowner’s Insurance?
The main difference between the ownership of a home and a condo is regarding the part of the residence that you need to get coverage for. When it is about a home, you need to take care of both the interiors as well as exteriors of the house.
In the case of a condo, however, you need coverage only for the interior of the property, and the exteriors and common spaces are the corporation’s responsibility. Therefore, it is important to understand the differences between the two types.
#1 Dwelling coverage
The dwelling coverage that is essential in the case of a condominium should be sufficient to cover the rebuilding of only the interiors of the unit. All the other things like lifts, hallways, walls on the outside, etc. are taken care of by the corporation or by the Homeowner’s Association (HOA).
In the case of homes, the situation is different as the owner needs to take care of both these things under dwelling coverage.
#2 Liability coverage
Personal liability coverage is also amongst the crucial aspects when considering the insurance cover. There are chances that a person visiting the condo gets into an accident while present there or gets an injury. For such situations, you need insurance coverage coupled with an insurance that covers your personal liability.
So, the liability coverage is not just limited to the accidents that take place inside your home. There could be accidents in the common spaces of the building as well. In case of condos, the HOA insurance cover these.
When it comes to houses, the scenario is again different as the homeowner would be responsible and should have liability coverage for both the inside as well as the outside of the house.
#3 Personal property coverage
The HOA coverage is not going to cover the personal belongings that you have inside your unit. These things include your jewelry, appliances, clothing, furniture items, etc. Therefore, your condo insurance is going to depend on these things as well.
In this aspect, the situation is the same for both homeowners as well as condo owners. This is because, in both cases, the owner needs to take full responsibility for their personal belongings.
A Peek Into the Insurance Cover by Homeowner’s Association
Upon purchasing a condo unit, the owner automatically becomes a part of the HOA as well. Therefore, the rules and regulations, as well as information about the insurance coverage, are set by the entire HOA. In Toronto, different HOA’s follow slightly different ways. All the HOAs do not necessarily cover all the costs or issues that you may need coverage for.
The most common things that you need coverage for are as follows:
- General risks
- Costs of renovation
- Incidents that might occur in common spaces of the project
- Injuries or accidents occurring inside the unit
Most of the HOAs do not provide all-in coverage. Therefore, it is essential to take additional coverage, as well. However, it is essential that before going ahead with one, you look into every HOA condo insurance policy clearly so as to get an idea about the insurance that you have as it is. Accordingly, you could choose an insurance plan that you will need in addition to the HOA coverage.
Why Is It Essential to Cover Your Personal Property?
Personal insurance is much more complex than just being associated with thefts that might occur in the condo. As a condo owner, you can take coverage of as many items or belongings as you would like.
In fact, most owners prefer to opt for a yearly inventory so as to make sure that they have coverage for it. For example, there are always going to be replacements or newer items in the house once in a while.
There may be a case that you purchased a new television, air conditioner, or something else. Also, there may be a chance that one of these things break sometime in the future due to some misshapen. Periodic inventory would make sure that the new items can also get added to the coverage of personal property.
The home insurance policies have coverage available for almost anything and everything that you own. Commonly, people also refer to it as a ‘personal property guarantee.’ There are multiple limitations to these types of coverage’s.
It is always advisable to be thorough with the coverage plan that you are choosing to fulfill your requirements. There are always going to be multiple plans available with a property insurance company. Your insurance provider should be reliable, trustworthy, and should hold a license too.
Coverage Available for Natural Disasters
When talking about a place like Canada, one of the most common natural disasters that are countable for insurance claims is water damage. However, the majority of ‘all-risks’ types of insurance plans also don’t cover this aspect.
In Ontario, there are a few reputable agencies that offer a separate ‘overland flood insurance’ or ‘disaster insurance.’ This is a smart coverage plan that should be considered.
Summer storms are quite common in Ontario, and in Toronto, the rising lakes’ levels cause a fair amount of devastation. When buying a coverage plan, be wise and look keenly through the fine print.
This is because most are not going to cover natural disasters. In Canada, it is even more important to have coverage for this issue! Go for a plan that covers you for tornadoes, earthquakes, floods, or other issues.
These will come as an additional cost to you as they have separate coverage’s for these issues. However, it is a smarter choice to make. One thing to remember here is that natural disasters are going to cost the maximum, that is, in thousands of dollars. It is always better to have coverage for it.
The Best Condo Insurance Companies
If you are a condo owner in Canada, there are high chances that you have already spent a lot on the real estate property that you own. You would have spent considerable time in finding the best suitable insurance as well.
Well, every condo owner needs it, and there are various policies and things to consider. Here are some of the best condo insurance companies that you can rely on.
Sonnet is a condo insurance company that you need if you are looking to get home insurance. It is not a typical insurance company offering just any insurance policy, but has everything done online. Sonnet is 100 percent online insurance provider that is changing the market.
The company utilizes analytics and data to provide customized coverage. They make it simpler for their customers to understand. The prices are quite competitive, and considering the online service provided, Sonnet is definitely the best condo insurance company in Canada.
#2 Square One
Square One is another leader when it comes to home insurance in Canada. The company provides customizable policies where you can set your limits, deductibles, and coverage’s. As a customer, you are free to decide what to get insure and for how much.
If you are looking for one of the best insurance companies in Canada, Square One is one of the ideal options. It has a digital platform and provides superior protection. You will get guaranteed building replacement coverage and personalized coverage. Get in touch with them through their website for a free and customized quotation.
#3 Intact Financial Corporation
It is one of the largest providers of property and casualty insurance in Canada. You can trust the company to protect what matters. The company also provides restoration and repair services. Intact Financial Corporation has been in the industry for years, and it is one of the best insurance companies that you can find in Canada.
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Frequently asked questions answered here!
Q. Is there a difference in insurance costs when you live in popular cities like Toronto?
The location of your condo does play a role in deciding the amount or limit for your condo insurance. This is because the location is a factor that is going to affect costs such as rebuilding costs, buying new equipment, repairs, etc. These things eventually can shape your coverage cost too.
Q. Does the condo insurance cover your storage locker?
Yes, the coverage does include insuring your storage locker as well. It does not matter whether your personal belongings are placed inside your condominium or at some other location. All the valuables that you include under your insurance coverage.
Q. Why is it crucial to get loss assessment coverage?
When it comes to condo insurance, loss assessment coverage plays an important role. This is because you have equal responsibility, just as the other owners of the units in your building or entire development. In case of special assessment or any additional fee, this is divided equally among all the owners.
It is important to have condo insurance to cover and protect all the necessary things. When you think of buying a condominium, look into the insurance costs as well. You cannot neglect this aspect of purchasing a condominium.
Uncertainties can occur at any place and at any point in time. Make the right choice while picking out the insurance plan for your condo unit. Look through the HOA condo insurance policy thoroughly. If need be, seek help from an expert in the industry to help you decide that you are making the right choice.
These companies will help you by providing you with condo insurance quotes valid for your condo’s units. Buying a condo means making a big investment and putting in a large sum of money. Therefore, make sure you do it right! Revisit us and stay up to date with all the condo news that matters most.