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Condominium Unit Owners Insurance

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Unit Owners Insurance Information

Under Pennsylvania law, a condominium association’s insurance responsibilities are divided between the association and the unit owners. The law requires the association to purchase insurance for all common property at the associations and for the units themselves. The unit owners are responsible for purchasing insurance for any improvements made to their units (unless the association adopts this responsibility) and for their personal property.

Your board of directors fulfills the association’s insurance obligations by purchasing an Association Master Policy as a common expense to thye association. It is this policy that provides coverage for your unit, including exterior and interior walls, built-in appliances and cabinets, and any other property that forms a part of the real estate.

But the Unit Owner is responsible to purchase coverage for any improvements made to the unit (unless the association adopts this responsibility), and the unit owner’s personal property. This responsibility is met by the unit owner purchasing a Unit Owner’s Policy sometimes called a Form HO-6 policy.

The association's master policy is subject to a property loss deductible. Under certain circumstances, the board may make a resident responsible for the master policy property deductible. If the deductible should become the unit owner’s responsibility, it will be paid by either the Building Coverage or Loss Assessment Coverage portion of your unit owner’s policy, depending on the nature of the loss. Be certain your policy contains a minimum of $5,000 of Building Coverage and $10,000 of Loss Assessment Coverage to cover this exposure.

Most insurance agents have not been trained in the special insurance needs of association living and so may not know how to tailor your unit owners policy to match the coverages provided by the master policy.

Gallina and Sons specializes in association insurance and our personal insurance agents are specially trained in the unique insurance challenges of association living. Our agents would be happy to assist you with all of your personal insurance needs or to provide instructions to your current agent if he or she is not specially trained in association insurance.

Your Unit Owners Policy should include the following coverages . . .

 • At least $10,000 of Real Property coverage. This covers the master policy deductible if the loss arises in your unit and any improvements it is your responsibility to insure. The limit should be increased to match the full value of any improvements it is your responsibility to insure. 

• Personal Property coverage. This covers your personal belongings, including furniture, clothing, electronics, and other movable property. Your limit should be high enough to replace all of your personal belongings. Claims should be paid on a Replacement Cost basis.  

• Loss of Use coverage. This covers expenses you may incur because of a loss suffered to your property, including the cost to secure other lodgings while repairs are made to your home.

• Personal Liability coverage. This coverage protects you if you are responsible for an injury to another person or damage to someone else’s property. You should purchase at least as much liability coverage as you have assets to protect.
• At least $10,000 of Loss Assessment coverage. Because you live in an association, you may occasionally be required to pay your share of an uncovered loss, sometimes including your share of the master policy deductible. Loss assessment coverage will pay this amount on your behalf. 

• Personal Injury coverage.
Because you are a member of an association, you may be upon to vote at meetings, give your opinion about association governance, or enforce association rules. These activities can give rise to defamation or invasion of privacy claims against you not covered by a homeowners policy without Personal Injury coverage.  

• Volunteer Acts coverage.
A necessary companion to Personal Injury coverage and the association’s Directors and Officers Liability coverage, Volunteer Acts coverage provides legal defense and indemnification for suits brought against you for wrongful acts you may commit when volunteering your time at the association.







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