Condo Insurance and Claims


Abora Julie A. Martin
By Julie A. Martin

When you have a property insurance claim in a single-family home, the claims process can be both frustrating and intimidating, and can be a long involved process. In a condo, it can be even more challenging, because the association is responsible for the exterior walls and the roof. So, what happens when the claim involves damage to the interior premises as a result of property that the association is responsible for?

Hypothetical situation: Due to a roof leak that was not discovered, the ceiling collapses in a condo unit, with the ceiling dry wall pieces landing on furniture in the living room and dining room. In addition to the drywall damage to the ceiling, there is now mold in the unit that spreads on whatever it lands on as well as the other areas of the home.

Building Corner With White Balcony Railings In A Low Angle View In Destin, FloridaIn this situation, up until several years ago, insureds would put the claim in with their carrier and then wait for the carrier to subrogate against the condo association. Now however, carriers opt to take care of the parts of the claim that the unit owner is responsible for, i.e. contents, additional living expenses and mold.

For the areas that the association is responsible for, the carrier will deny those parts of the claim that the unit HO6 coverage does not pertain to. In a condo, you own from the drywall in, and anything permanently attached to the inside of the unit are things the association is NOT going to pay for such as the flooring, cabinets, counters, bathroom fixtures and interior doors.

COA-Condo Association is responsible for the exterior walls and the roof. If there is a claim arising from property your COA is responsible for, your best bet is to get a copy of the Master Property policy for your building, along with a copy of their certificate of insurance, as well as a copy of your declarations page.

If you end up in the situation above, please let your agent know right away, and have your policy jacket and your declarations page handy. Protect against further loss by moving undamaged items away from loss site, and cooperate with the carrier inspection. If a carrier representative asks you questions you do not know the answers to, do NOT guess. Let them know you do not know the answer and will find out and let them know when you can.

Any questions you have about your coverage and how the coverage will respond in the event of a claim, please direct those questions to your insurance agent, and make sure you let them know any definitions you do not understand.

Claim time is the wrong time to not understand your insurance policy or what coverage you have, and whether it meets your needs. Having the conversation now will give you peace of mind that your insurance coverage meets your needs and will respond when you need it.

For more, contact me, Client Advocate at Abora Insurance Group, at 1-800-494-1333, or visit