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Condo Insurance For Ottawa Residents

You may be on the fence about owning a condo, as condo fees and condo board headaches can turn into a drag. But the advantages, include snow removal during the winters and other benefits, can outweigh the cons. So, how can you stay adequately protected in Ottawa’s condo insurance arena? Whether you live in a high-rise condo or a townhouse, our brokers do the legwork to find you competitive rates and connect you with an insurer to meet your needs.

How much will it cost for Condo Insurance in Ottawa?

Whether you’re a baby boomer who’s downgrading to a smaller space or you’re single and crave a well-maintained space, you may be thinking about how much will it cost for condo insurance. Condo insurance costs vary depending on everything from where you live to your insurance claim history.

What Does My Condo Insurance Cover?

The proper condo insurance policy will cover your personal items, your condo unit (usually everything from the walls inwards), personal liability, improvements to your unit, living expenses, and loss assessment.

Let’s explore the 5 condo insurance options in a bit more detail.

  • Personal items and property: coverage for everything personal, like clothing, kitchen gadgets, TVs, and more. This coverage helps you repair or replace everything from your condo’s walls inward.
  • Personal Liability: protect yourself from lawsuits when people slip on your uneven steps or snow-covered pathway.
  • Additional Living Expenses: your condo unit floods, and you need major renovations that could take months. This coverage pays for a hotel, apartment or comparable home and food expenses while you live away from home.
  • Improvements and Betterments: if you upgrade your counters or light fixtures, you’ll be covered after a loss.
  • Loss Assessment: provides coverage for your share of any costs or the deductible that trickles down from the condo corporation’s loss from the building or common areas.

What is Optional Condo Insurance in Ottawa?

When you’re figuring out the details of your condo insurance policy, you have several options to consider that are not part of a standard policy. While it may seem like a no-brainer to have full coverage, some people can’t afford the whole shebang, or they prefer to pay a lower premium.

5 Optional Condo Insurance Options:

  • Sewer Backup: covers damage from your back-upped sewer and drains
  • Flood: covers damage caused by snowmelt, overflow of lakes and rivers, and precipitation.
  • Identity Theft: this coverage helps you cover losses if you’re the victim of identity theft, beyond the coverage you already have.
  • Floaters: if you want to insure certain items (e.g. art, jewelry, sports equipment), that are of a higher value, a floater will extend your coverage limit to better reflect the value of the item.
  • Earthquake: covers damage caused by earthquakes, landslides, mudslides and other earth movements.

Do I Need Condo Insurance in Ottawa?

Yes, it’s recommended all condo owners get the essential condo insurance coverage if the unexpected occurs. Imagine a flood or fire destroys all your belongings and you don’t have the money to replace it. Or, your unit’s hardwood floors are ruined, and you need a brand-new floor. These scenarios happen every day. When disasters occur, you’ll be happy that you planned for the worst.

Did you know?

You should always review your condo corporation’s master policy every year. If there is a change to the provincial legislation, for example, that may change the loss assessment portion or other important detail in your policy.

What are the different Levels of Condo Coverage?

3 Levels of Condo Coverage

You can choose from a policy that covers all risks or one that is more specific. You’ll likely pay more for an all-inclusive insurance option – but it’s nice to have choices.

Comprehensive:

all risks are covered unless it’s specifically excluded in your policy.

Named Perils (Basic):

this insurance option lists only specific risks where you’re protected.

Broad:

this option will cover more risks but may have more limited coverage in certain areas.

It’s essential you tell your broker what your individual needs are; our brokers can match you up to one of our amazing insurance company partners.

Did you know?

If you’re on the fence about making a claim, ask yourself a few questions first. Will the cost of the loss be lower than the deductible? If yes, consider paying out of pocket. Your premiums will love you for it!

What are my Loss Settlement Options?

The money your insurance company pays you after you’ve had an unexpected loss should be fair and square, right? But what determines how much you’ll get after a natural disaster or a flood in your condo unit. This is something you must set up in your insurance policy ahead of time. You can choose from the below options.

Actual Cash Value:

this is the market price or purchase price of your items, minus depreciation.

Replacement Cost:

this is the cost to replace your belongings “as is.”

Did you know?

Water damage is one of the most common condo insurance claims for a condo owner. In many cases, you may not get your deductible amount back from your insurance company if you can’t prove that your neighbour was negligent, for example.

How Much Coverage do I Need for Condo Insurance?

We recommend you carry $2 million for personal liability and $3 million for the content coverage minimum. Why? It’s important to have the maximum coverage as you can afford for unexpected losses that could leave you in debt.

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What Factors Impact your condo insurance rate?

There are multiple variables that can affect your condo insurance rates, not just where you live.

10 Factors that Impact your condo insurance rates
  • Claim history
  • Credit rating
  • Condo repair costs
  • The condition/age of your roof, plumbing, heating & electrical systems
  • Proximity to a fire station
  • The crime and claim rate in neighbourhood
  • Rate of natural disasters in your community
  • Where you live in relation to rivers and lakes
  • Any discounts you have
  • Loss settlement, policy limits, deductible & coverage

How to Get Cheaper Condo Insurance rates?

While you may be tempted to get a dirt-cheap condo insurance premium, are you adequately protected in every scenario? Maybe not. While you can’t predict how much a flood or fire will cut into your bank account, it’s much better to have adequate insurance coverage.

6 Tips to get lower your condo insurance rates:

  1. Combine your car and condo policies
  2. Paying once a year may save you some money
  3. Discounts could lower your rates by up to 10%
  4. Review your policy details on a regular basis
  5. Balance your deductible amount with your rate
  6. Ask your broker to find you competitive rates

Did you know?

Your condo corporation has their own liability coverage, but you still need your own personal policy to guard against injuries and property damage in your condo unit and while away on vacation.

What is a High-Risk Condo Insurance?

If you’ve had insurance issues in the past, you may be a high-risk customer. But what’s considered high risk and how do you avoid this label? It means you may have missed payments, or your policy was cancelled in the past. Whatever the reason, our brokers can direct you to one of our insurance company partners who specialize in high-risk condo insurance.

How to Submit a Condo Insurance Claim in Ottawa?

You get home and your furniture is soaked from a flood and you’re in panic mode. What do you do? Besides grabbing a bucket, you should call your broker or insurance company if you decide to submit a claim. Always consider paying for repairs or replacing your floors, if you can afford it. Avoiding the claim process will maintain your insurance rates at the same or similar level.

6 steps to make a claim:

  1. Write down the details of the loss. You won’t remember everything – or most of what occurred. Take photos of the event and/or record your findings.
  2. Make a claim. It’s quick and easy to submit a claim online or through the MySharp app. If you prefer the phone, give us a call. Or, call your insurer especially if it’s after regular office hours.
  3. Keep your receipts. If you need to leave your home due to the damage, make sure you bring your receipts to get reimbursed for additional living expenses. If your claim is covered, you can get some help covering expenses.
  4. Make a list: include a complete list of everything that was damaged, destroyed or stolen. It helps if you have a home inventory list or video already made.
  5. Talk to a claims adjuster: A claims adjuster will talk to you as part of the claims investigation. The adjuster will be assigned to you once you call your insurer and submit your claim.
  6. Discuss the settlement offer with your broker. If you prefer to use your own contracting company, make sure you settle this with your insurance company before you go ahead with the repairs.

How do I set my Deductible Amount?

First, what is a deductible? A deductible is the set amount that your insurance company will reimburse you after an insured loss. For example, if a storm causes $4,000 in damages to your roof, and your deductible is set at $500, your insurer will reimburse you for the difference, i.e. $3,500. Some people like to keep their deductible at a higher dollar amount, as this tends to lower their condo insurance rate. Speak with your broker about how to balance a good deductible amount for each of your policy requirements.

Why Should I Choose Sharp Insurance?

As a new condo owner or a seasoned condominium dweller, you may need advice or help with policy details, claim information or a lowdown on insurance rates. Our partnerships with multiple insurers can give you access to find the most competitive rates without all the work. Here are a few highlights of what you’ll get working with Sharp:

  • You have a trusted advisor by your side. Our brokers’ skills help you out when you need direction on policy details, claims information, and more.
  • Access to digital options. Our app, named MySharp, is available via your phone or desktop computer – whatever is easier for you. Find insurance details in minutes with or without an Internet connection.
  • We have quick and efficient service. We answer your questions at your convenience, 6 days a week.
  • We work for you. We’re a loyal brokerage that helps you when you need it the most as an award-winning brokerage – we’re here to be your Sherpa on your insurance journey.

Currently Not Accepting Walk-Ins

Please be advised that due to unforeseen circumstances, Sharp is unable to assist walk-in clients at the moment.

We are happy to assist you with all your insurance needs over the phone at 1.877.218.2008