At a minimum you need to obtain insurance for your personal property, and personal liability. Personal Property generally consists of anything that you would take with you if moving to a new location. Personal Liability affords coverage for injuries to guests within your unit. This includes furniture, clothing, contents of your storage locker, and any appliances that are not built-in. Laws vary by state.
Some states have statutes in place that specify the scope of insurance coverage that the association master policy is required to maintain. Some states rely on the association condo documents in order to establish the insuring responsibility of the unit owner and the association. If you are required to insure any elements of your individual unit, you will need betterments and improvements coverage (See Coverage A below).
A review of your complete condominium documents is the only way to accurately determine the amount of coverage needed by each party.
This is also referred to as Building Additions and Alterations Coverage. This covers for direct physical loss to any part of your unit that you are required to insure. This would afford coverage for such things as built-in appliances, cabinets, fixtures, carpeting, paint and wallpaper. The policy limit will depend on your requirements as a unit owner.
As a unit owner you could be subject to an assessment made by your association for certain losses that are not covered under the association’s master policy. Some unit owner policies include a minimal amount of this type of coverage. Additional limits are available.
In recent years, insurance carriers have offered more favorable rates for higher deductibles. Increasing your unit owner deductible from $250 to $500 cold save you as much as 10% of the total premium.
Choosing a coverage limit is an important task. This is determined by such things as type, location, and quality of construction. It will also depend on your insuring responsibility as set forth in your documents.
A declaration is a condominium association’s primary governing document. It sets forth the insurable interest and requirement of the unit owners and the associations. All documents are written differently. The needed limits of insurance are determined only after careful review of these documents.