November is ‘Condominium Month’ here at SMW! So, pull out your condo insurance policies and prepare to learn everything you’ve ever wanted to learn about this important topic.
At SMW, we know condos. Over the past 40 years, we have worked hard to earn our reputation as the premier condominium insurance adjusting firm in New England. We know this stuff cold, and we want to take this opportunity to share with our community and highlight the important areas you should know about if your condominium suffers a major property loss.
What are those key areas?
The short answer: it depends. If you’re the owner of a condo unit, you need to know about the various unit owner coverages. You also need to know what the Master Policy does and does not cover – and to ensure there is enough coverage. The property managers who oversee care and maintenance of the building, meanwhile, need to think about insurance in a way that protects the building while minimizing cost to the association. And the Board – or condo association – needs to work closely with the property manager to ensure continued progress.
It can be very complex and confusing.
To assist in your understanding of the various topics to know about, we will run a series of posts throughout November that address the most pertinent issues. For condo unit owners, this means an in-depth overview of the right coverage you should have. This is especially important, as most unit owners have purchased insurance to cover their personal property and loss of use of their unit, but still remain exposed due to gaps – and possibly insufficient limits – in their coverage.
There are three types of coverage your condominium association might carry, including “Bare Walls” coverage. This is important to know, because your unit owner policy is predicated on whichever one you select. To read our past blog about the three types of condo coverage, please click here.
Throughout November we’ll look at condo/maintenance fees, as well as the per unit deductible and what to do in the event of a loss.
Consider this a “Condo 101” for any unit owner who doesn’t understand the intricacies of properly insuring such a domicile. Whether you’re a long-time condo owner or a new purchaser, you need to know several key items about your insurance. For example, do you understand what the Master Insurance Policy covers? Are maintenance fees continuing? Can your contractor come in right after a loss and fix the damage? Who covers condo fees? These are a few of the top things you need to know as a unit owner.
We will also provide a point of view from the perspective of the property manager. After a loss, a good property manager will take control of the situation. Should you let each unit owner bring in their own restoration company? You want to do your job, which means protecting the property, minimizing cost, and increasing the value of the property over time. What are the right steps to take in the event of a fire, or water damage? The answers may vary.
These are critical questions for both condo owners and condo property managers. Over the course of this month we will provide a line of sight into all of these areas.
If you have specific questions about condo insurance, don’t hesitate to call us to discuss. We will be happy to help.