If you own a condo in Toronto, you want to ensure that the right condo insurance properly protects it. Toronto homeowners typically understand the importance of home insurance but are not always aware of how Toronto condo insurance can differ from standard homeowners insurance.
Condo insurance in Toronto is a type of personal insurance that protects not only the interior of your unit but also provides insurance coverage for all of your personal belongings. But it also takes certain factors into consideration that are unique to condominiums, such as the possibility that improvements have been made to the unit during the time since it was first built and the fact that condominium corporations often require condo owners to pay a share of the deductible on the corporation's master policy. With the right condo insurance, Toronto condo owners can rest easy knowing they have financial protection against unexpected expenses and insured perils. A home is often the most significant financial investment any of us will ever make. Ensure it has superior protection.
Toronto Condo insurance, or anywhere else in Canada, is not mandatory because the government does not legally require it. But you will likely only be able to purchase a condo if you have adequate condo insurance. Toronto mortgage providers and banks typically require proof of insurance before finalizing a mortgage. They will refuse to go through with the mortgage if you do not provide a certificate of insurance that lists the types of coverage and coverage limits that are acceptable to them.
Additionally, condominium corporations usually require new condo owners to have adequate condo insurance in Toronto. Even if you don't have personal insurance coverage for your condo, you will likely be required to participate in the condo corporation's master policy for the property. While condo insurance in Toronto isn't technically mandated by law, it is almost always mandatory because you can only buy a condominium with it.
As a condo owner, you are responsible for the inside of your individual unit, whereas the condo corporation owns the exterior elements of the condo building. This typically includes any interior walls, fixtures, and personal belongings. You may also be responsible for common areas such as parking lots, lobbies, or media rooms. In the event of an accident, ensure that your unit is adequately protected. Without a condominium insurance policy in place, this may result in you having to pay out-of-pocket for these losses.
While condos are extremely popular in Toronto, you can also get condo insurance for condos in other Ontario cities. An insurance broker can help ensure you have the best protection for your unit.
You need enough insurance coverage to protect all your personal belongings. It's necessary to have enough condo insurance to adequately protect all the contents in your unit and any upgrades you have made to your unit so that you will receive the right coverage in the event of a loss. The amount of condo insurance you need in Toronto to protect your assets will vary based on each individual.
You can purchase additional insurance protection if you need more than the standard limits and your condo requires more protection. You must choose an amount of coverage that adequately ensures all of your belongings and investments. A broker will provide advice and guidance and explain coverage options to protect your personal property should the unexpected occur.
How much do all your personal belongings cost for each household member? A member in the household may be a dependent, such as someone away from school or a family member living in a nursing home. Belongings include but are not limited to, clothing, furniture, electronics, high-value items, or collectibles. You will want to ensure your policy provides enough coverage to replace your personal items in the event of a loss. A helpful guide is to record all the items you own annually in a home inventory list. This helps you to keep track of your property. Any changes should be shared with your broker to be sure your condo insurance Toronto policy provides the coverage you need.
If you have made upgrades to your unit, such as installing a new marble countertop, new hardwood floors, or even remodeling a bathroom, be sure to tell your broker about these upgrades. Your condominium insurance Toronto policy will protect the financial investment you have made to the unit in the event of a loss.
Condo insurance in Toronto covers your contents, liability, additional living expenses, any betterments or improvements you have made to your unit, and loss assessment for a range of risks.
All personal belongings in your Toronto condo, such as your clothes, electronics, and furnishings, would be protected against an insured claim up to a specified limit outlined in your condo policy. If you have a basement storage unit or storage locker that contains your belongings like holiday decorations, bicycles, or extra furniture, these items will also be covered on your policy. That is why it is essential to go through your condo room-by-room to determine the cost of all your personal items so that in the event of a claim, you would avoid having to pay out-of-pocket to replace your belongings due to adequate contents insurance coverage.
Let's say you are having some friends or family members over, and someone slips and falls on your kitchen floor or is bitten by your pet, and there is bodily injury. With liability coverage, your condo policy will cover medical bills and any subsequent litigation. As a condo unit owner, it makes sense to ensure you have the proper insurance protection should anything happen to you, your family, or visitors.
Additional Living Expenses Coverage
If there is significant damage and your Toronto condo is not suitable for living due to an incident such as a fire, and you are required to find temporary accommodation. At the same time, renovations or repairs are being completed, your condo policy will cover the costs for you to live elsewhere.
Suppose you have made any betterments or improvements to your condo unit, such as updating hardwood floors or installing new countertops or kitchen cabinets. In that case, your condo insurance Toronto policy will also cover these improvements. If you have renovated your condo, be sure to let your broker know so they can ensure your unit is protected.
That being said, it's also important to understand that betterments and improvements coverage applies to all unit improvements—even those made before you purchased the condo unit. If your unit had one or more previous owners, they likely renovated or upgraded the condo at some point. For example, they may have added hardwood flooring or switched out a basic laminate countertop in favour of marble. When you purchase a condominium, make sure to find out all the upgrades that have been done and let your broker know so they can include them in your coverage limits. Suppose your condo is destroyed and must be rebuilt. In that case, you may not have sufficient coverage to restore it to the way it was with all the upgrades unless they are included in your policy for condo insurance in Toronto.
Whether you live in a high-rise condo or some other type of building arrangement, there are common areas of your condo complex that are designed for all tenants to use, such as the lobby, elevator, hallways, gym, landscaping and more. Suppose those parts of the complex suffer damage or are destroyed and need to be replaced. In that case, it's not uncommon for condo corporations to issue a special assessment to condominium owners requiring them to pay a portion of the deductible or part of the overall cost of building restoration if the coverage limits on the condominium corporation's insurance policy are not adequate to cover the entire cost. Suppose you have loss assessment coverage as part of your Toronto condo insurance package. In that case, your insurance carrier will provide funds to cover your portion of the deductible or loss assessment up to the limits on your policy.
A typical condo insurance policy in Toronto does not cover damage caused by wear and tear, rust, corrosion, gradual deterioration, insects and rodents (termites, squirrels, mice, etc.), repeated leakage or seepage of water, the freezing of indoor plumbing, or intentional or criminal acts. Your policy will outline specific exclusions, so review them to ensure you have the right protection.
You can purchase additional coverage to protect against some of the above-excluded coverages. For example, consider purchasing sewer backup or overland water coverage to protect against water damage losses. Note that adding coverage to your condo policy could increase your insurance premium.
This is a fairly common misconception. A portion of your condo fees go toward paying the condo corporation's insurance policy, which gives insurance coverage for the common areas of the building and property—basically, everything that is not part of an individual condo unit. That means your unit and all your belongings inside are not protected by the insurance policy collectively paid by the condo fees. If the building was destroyed or your condo or belongings suffered damage, the condo corporation's insurance policy would not apply. You would need your own Toronto condo insurance to receive insurance compensation for your unit and its contents.
Condominiums are often located in high-rise buildings, which are especially popular in Toronto for their space-saving designs and excellent views. Still, condos can also be in low-rise buildings, townhouses or even detached homes that are grouped together in a condo complex. You need the right condo insurance if a condo corporation governs your property. Toronto homeowners living in a townhouse or detached condo still need certain coverages such as betterments and improvements or loss assessments specific to condo insurance.
When it comes to the cost of condo insurance, Toronto homeowners need to know that it can vary quite a bit based on numerous factors, such as:
When you speak to a broker at Morison Insurance, we'll start by consulting with you to get all the information we need to ensure that you have the right condo insurance in Toronto. For a package that includes recommended coverages and limits, you should pay somewhere in the range of $500 to $1,200 for Toronto condo insurance.
When you purchase a condo, shopping for condo insurance in Toronto is best. Your mortgage lender will often require proof of insurance before your condo purchase closes. The best practice is to have your condo policy active about 10 to 30 days before your closing date.
Setting up condominium insurance in Toronto is quite simple. Brokers work with many insurance providers and will compare quotes from multiple insurers to get you the best protection at a competitive price. They will walk you through the entire process giving you peace of mind knowing you are covered.
You can buy condo insurance in Toronto from Morison Insurance. We work with leading Canadian insurance companies to get you the best coverage for your Toronto condo. Get started today by filling out the form on our website or by contacting us at 1-800-463-8074. Let us show you the Morison difference.
This content is written by our Morison Insurance team. It is provided for general information only. Insurance needs differ from person to person, and this article is therefore not a substitute for professional advice about your individual insurance needs which can be obtained by speaking to one of our brokers.