Tenants and Condominiums

Renters Insurance Facts

If you’re living in you first apartment, you may think you don’t own anything of value. However, what little furniture ou do have may break your budget if you should have to replace it. Even in a furnished apartment, imagine the cost of replacing a closet full of clothing and shoes.

When it comes to your compensation for loss or damage, your landlord has few legal obligations. Tenants are solely responsible for the replacement of personal possessions if they are damaged, destroyed or stolen. Your landlord may have to replace a damaged lock after a break-in but not your missing stereo and CD collection.

As a tenant, you may be held accountable for damage to any part of the building in which you live or injury to others. If you accidentally leave the bathtub running while you take a phone call, clean-up costs to your neighbor one floor below may be your responsibility. Tenant insurance under Section II provides coverage for such events. As a condominium owner, you have purchased your unit and a share in the corporation that runs the whole building. With that comes responsibility for the building.

The structure is insured through a policy taken by the corporation in everyone’s name. Damage to your unit is covered under that policy. Beyond that, a condominium owner/occupier’s insurance needs are similar to tenants’.

Condo unit owners often add improvements to suit their own taste such as a broadloom or addition of built-in cabinets or sound systems. The additional value is not included in th corporation’s policy. If the standard amount is not enough, it may be increased for an extra premium.

Unit owners may have to pay a special assessment (in addition to normal maintenance fees) to cover the cost of repairs to common elements if there is no insurance or it doesn’t pay in full. Unit owners policies usually include coverage for these assessments, up to a stated amount. If the assessment is because of a deductible, some policies may not cover it, or only pay for part of it.

Lastly, you may wish to invest in Supplemental coverage for your condo separate rom insurance improvements. Supplemental coverage means insuring our condominium unit to protect yourself in the event that the corporation’s insurance does not fully cover a loss to your unit.

Insurance is complicated. If you’re unsure about your coverage, talk to your insurance representative.