If you're living in a condo in the Panhandle of Florida, whether it's in Niceville, Fort Walton Beach, or Destin, you're in for a treat with the beautiful views of the bay, sound, or Gulf of Mexico. However, it's important to have the right condo insurance coverage to protect your assets.
What is Condo Insurance?
Condo insurance is specifically designed to help protect against losses and financial burdens of repairing damages to a condominium unit. Often, this insurance will provide protection against theft, vandalism, fire damage, and water damage.
Condos are popular in the Niceville area because of our amazing beaches (not that we're biased or anything). If you are purchasing a condo, you're needs are very different from a traditional homeowner or a renter. Your insurance coverage will need to be too.
What does Condo Insurance cover?
A condominium association and the state will have various requirements for the association's master insurance policy. This will provide the association with protection against some damages from storms or fires. However, in most cases, the associations' coverage will not extend past the exterior walls.
This means that the inside of your condo (the walls, floors, furniture, fixtures, etc) is your responsibility. Your personal condo insurance should include coverage for damages due to:
How much coverage do I need?
While a standard condo policy is extremely important, you can add extended coverages. One coverage that's often overlooked is "Unit Owners Special Coverage A". This coverage is designed to protect you from a wide range of perils that can cause damage to your unit, like:
- Water that enters an open window that causes damage to carpet or furniture
- Damage due to the weight of objects, people, or animals
- Damage to the interior by a falling object with no exterior damage
- Damage to a falling object itself, such as a light fixture or chandelier
- Aquarium breaks and floods unit
- Power surge that causes damage to electronics
- Foreign objects dropped into and damage plumbing systems
- Spillage – wine on a white carpet, nail polish on a couch
Unfortunately, some insurance agencies may not include this coverage in your policy to keep your premium down. While this might make your premium look good at the time, it could end up costing you thousands of dollars in the long run if a claim is denied because you don't have the right coverage.
To avoid this situation, it's essential to review your policy and make sure you have Unit Owners Special Coverage A. This coverage changes your policy from "named peril" to "open peril," meaning it covers damage from all perils unless specifically excluded.
Where can I purchase Condo Insurance?
It's important to note that only a licensed adjuster can determine what is covered and what is not. The examples above are a guide to help you understand the coverage. If you have any questions or concerns, be sure to discuss them with your insurance agent. Don't overlook this coverage – it could save you a lot of money and hassle in the future.