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Homeowners Insurance in Houston

What Does Condo Insurance Cover?

How condo insurance works

Condos are the conundrum of the housing world — they're more than apartments but they're different from houses. That means that condo insurance works a little differently than other types of insurance, too, and is usually coupled with a homeowners association's (HOA) master policy. 

It's important to know the differences between the two coverages and how each protects you. Condo residents typically own their individual units outright, but have shared ownership (along with your fellow condo dwellers) of the condo building/community and its common areas. This is what causes condo insurance to differ from, say, traditional homeowners insurance: because your ownership of many condo elements is shared with your neighbors, your insurance responsibilities can get divvied up too.

So what's up to you to insure on your own and what's covered collectively under your HOA insurance?

Condo insurance coverage: your unit

What your condo insurance usually covers

Because you're usually responsible for safeguarding your valuables and liability, a personal condo insurance policy can give you the financial protection and peace of mind you need. Here is a wide array of condo coverage options that step in where your HOA insurance doesn't:

Personal belongings
You'll likely want enough condo insurance to repair or replace your stuff if stolen or damaged. Replacement cost value will pay to replace items at their current value, without factoring in depreciation.

Interior structure
Many condo owners might not realize they own items like flooring, inner walls, countertops, and fixtures. These items are usually not covered under the HOA insurance, so it's up to you to have protection.

Even if your HOA insurance covers the structure of your place, chances are they won't increase coverage for renovations you make, like adding that granite countertop or marble bathroom tile.

If guests are hurt in your unit or their belongings are damaged, condo insurance can help cover the bills if you're held responsible. Your personal liability limit begins with a minimum of $100,000. If you'd like more protection, you can increase your limit to $300,000 or $500,000.

Loss assessment
Loss assessment coverage offers protection (up to the limits you choose on your policy) for damages you might be held responsible for by your condo association, like damage to a common area.

Identity theft
An inexpensive yet valuable coverage, this condo insurance add-on will help cover the costs of restoring your identity if it's stolen.

Scheduled property
While it's true that condo insurance can cover your personal property anywhere in the world, some items have specific limits.

Loss of use
If your home is uninhabitable due to a covered loss, your condo insurance policy can provide additional living expenses (any expense that exceeds your normal standard of living) or fair rental value so you can maintain your quality of life.

What your HOA insurance usually covers

Exterior structure
The outside components of your unit, like the walls and ceilings, typically still fall under the HOA policy.

condo insurance coverage: main building/community

What your condo insurance usually covers

Severe damage your HOA insurance can't cover

In rare cases, a covered loss to the building or common area can surpass the HOA insurance limits. If this happens, condo owners might have to make up the difference.

Adding loss assessment coverage to your condo insurance policy can be a real lifesaver. Loss assessment coverage helps pay your portion of the repairs, keeping unexpected disasters from affecting your savings.

What your HOA insurance usually covers

Injuries to guests on the outside property of the condo building or community would generally fall under the HOA policy.

Common areas
In a condo building this could be limited to things like hallways and lobbies, but in a sprawling condo townhouse community, pools, tennis courts, or even bike trails would often be covered for property damage and liability.

Shared amenities
Things like elevators or gym equipment that everyone uses would likely be protected by the HOA insurance if damaged by a covered risk.

Exterior structure
If a car drove through the outside wall of the condo building, for instance, it's typically not something condo owners have to cover themselves.

risks covered by condo insurance

Condo insurance can protect your unit and belongings against tons of covered risks, often including:

  • Fire or lightning
  • Windstorm or hail
  • Explosion
  •  Riot or civil commotion
  • Aircraft
  • Impact from vehicles
  • Smoke
  • Vandalism
  • Theft
  • Falling objects
  • Weight of ice, snow, or sleet
  • Collapse of a building or any part of a building

Source: ensurance

19 Homeowners Insurance in Houston

Homeowners Insurance in Houston

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