The popularity of condominiums is on the rise in Massachusetts. These housing units offer the advantages of homeownership coupled with many of the benefits of renting. If you are among the condominium owners in this state, you can cover your property with condo insurance.
Local independent agents can help you find the best policy to meet your coverage and budgetary needs. These agents are free to work with multiple insurance companies to ensure that you are getting the coverage you want at a competitive price. Find an independent insurance agent near you to get started.
What Is Massachusetts Condo Insurance?
Condo insurance is a specialized form of homeowners insurance that is designed to meet the unique coverage needs of condominium owners. A good condo insurance policy can cover your property and protect your finances at a very affordable cost.
As a condo owner, you are required to pay monthly dues to a homeowners association (HOA). Your HOA uses these funds to pay for safety and security services, management and upkeep for amenities such as a clubhouse and gym, and to fund the condo association’s master insurance policy.
The HOA master policy is designed to cover:
- Damage to your building’s structure, including its roof, walls, stairwells, and elevator
- Damage to all common areas and facilities, like gyms and swimming pools
- Liability lawsuits related to injuries or property damage sustained in common areas, parking lots, garages, walkways, and the lawn.
In most cases, coverage for everything walls-in in your unit is your own responsibility, though some HOA policies will also cover interior walls, windows, and/or built-in appliances.
A good condo insurance policy will work in conjunction with your HOA’s master insurance to provide you with all the protection you need while ensuring that you are not paying for any redundant coverage.
How Much Does Condo Insurance Cost in Massachusetts?
Condo insurance is much more affordable than traditional homeowners insurance because your policy does not need to cover the structure of the building you live in or any of the common areas you may use.
Let’s compare the average cost of homeowners insurance vs. the average cost of condo insurance in this state:
- Massachusetts average home insurance cost: $1,488 per year
- Massachusetts average condo insurance cost: $441 per year
The best way to be sure that you are getting your condominium coverage at a reasonable price is by comparing a few customized quotes from competing insurers before making a selection. Independent insurance agents make comparison shopping easy.
How Does Massachusetts Condo Insurance Cover Your Personal Property?
Condo insurance is designed to cover the property inside your condominium. It can pay for the cost of replacing or repairing your personal belongings if they are lost or damaged due to a covered event. Some of the covered events that may affect Massachusetts condo owners include:
- Property crimes, like theft and vandalism
- Fires, whether they started in your own condo or in a neighboring unit
- Severe weather, like thunderstorms, lightning, windstorms, hurricanes, tropical storms, hail, heavy snow, and ice accumulation
You will want to be certain that your coverage limits are high enough to enable you to fully replace all your belongings if they are destroyed in a major disaster like a structure fire. If you own particularly valuable property, you might need to purchase special endorsements in order for it to be fully covered.
How Does Massachusetts Condo Insurance Cover You against Liability Lawsuits?
All condo insurance policies include personal liability coverage. Your condo liability insurance can provide coverage if you or someone in your household (including your pets) unintentionally cause another person to experience an injury, property damage, financial loss, or other harm.
Examples of some things your condo liability insurance can cover include if a guest is injured in an accident in your home and it can be attributed to negligence on your part, if your dog gets loose and bites someone, or if you are accused of libel or slander.
If you are sued, your liability insurance can pay for:
- Legal counsel and defense
- Court costs
- Mediation costs
- Other related costs
Liability lawsuits related to accidents that occur in your condominium’s common areas like the lobby or clubhouse are covered by your HOA’s master policy.
What Is Loss of Use Insurance?
All condo insurance policies also include loss of use insurance. Loss of use insurance is designed to protect your finances if you are displaced from your home because significant damage from a covered event has left the property unsafe for habitation.
If you must seek alternate living arrangements until your condo is repaired and once again up to code, your loss of use insurance can pay for:
- The cost of accommodations like a hotel or a temporary rental home
- Moving costs and storage fees
- Pet boarding fees, if needed
- Mileage reimbursement if you must drive further to get to work
- A meal allowance if your accommodations do not include a kitchen
This coverage can continue until you can safely return to your home or you have secured new permanent housing.
What about Flood Damage in Massachusetts?
Condo insurance provides a lot of coverage, but like any insurance policy, it has some exclusions. Most notably, your policy will not cover flood damage.
If your neighborhood is impacted by a flash flood, your condo association will be responsible for covering damage to your building, but if your own personal property is damaged by floodwaters, you are responsible.
If your condo is on the second floor or higher, you probably do not need to worry about flood damage to your personal property. However, if you have a ground-floor unit, you may want to consider supplementing your condo insurance with a flood insurance policy.
Affordable contents-only policies are available through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which is administered by FEMA. Flood insurance policies take 30 days to go into effect, so do not wait until heavy rains are imminent to purchase your policy.
What Are the Best Condo Insurance Companies in Massachusetts?
There are lots of different insurance companies that provide coverage for condominium owners, but no particular company is best for everyone. While one company may be ideal for a condo owner who collects fine art, another might be the best choice for someone who is on a tight budget.
Local independent agents work with a variety of tried-and-true providers so you can rest assured that the companies recommended by your agent are among the best in Massachusetts for condo insurance. When you compare policies and rates from each of them, you can decide which is best for you.
Why Work with a Local Independent Insurance Agent?
Independent insurance agents live and work in your community, so they understand the risks you face as a resident of your city. These agents make it easy to compare coverage and rates from different insurance companies so you can select the policy that offers the best value for your money.
Arrange an obligation-free consultation with an independent insurance agent near you to learn more and you can start comparing customized condo insurance rates in no time.
TrustedChoice.com Article | Reviewed by Jeffrey Green
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