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HO-6 is home insurance for owners of co-ops or condominiums. It provides personal property coverage, liability coverage and specific coverage of improvements to the owner's unit. Typically the owner's condo or co-op association provides insurance that covers the outside of the dwelling (structure). 

Condo insurance is important to have though since your association's policy will not cover your belongings or provide you with personal liability coverage if someone is harmed inside of your residence.

An HO-6 policy will cover interior damage to your unit, improvements, additions and alterations you've made and your personal property. Additional living expenses, if your residence is not able to be lived in due to a covered peril, is usually also included. The condo association's policy typically covers the outside building structure and commons areas, such as hallways.

HO-6 insurance is designed to coordinate coverage with your condominium or cooperative's master policy.

Consider extra coverage, for valuables, such as jewelry, fine art or fancy computer equipment. Depending on where you live, you might also need additional coverage for earthquakes, flooding or windstorms. Discuss with your insurance agent or insurance company your needs to make sure you purchase the right amount of coverage.

Standard coverage doesn't vary much from one company to the next for an HO-6 policy, but rates and customer service do, so it's important to shop around for home insurance quotes from at least three different companies.

To learn more about HO-6 or other types of homeowners insurance, read about home insurance basics.

What does condo(HO-6)insurance cover?

Under the general terms of HO-6 condominium owner coverage, your policy should cover your personal property from 16 perils:

  • Fire or lightning
  • Windstorm or hail
  • Explosion
  • Riot or civil commotion
  • Damage caused by aircraft
  • Damage caused by vehicles
  • Smoke
  • Vandalism or malicious mischief
  • Theft
  • Volcanic eruption
  • Falling objects
  • Weight of ice, snow, or sleet
  • Accidental discharge or overflow of water or steam from within a plumbing, heating, air conditioning, or automatic fire-protective sprinkler system, or from a household appliance.
  • Sudden and accidental tearing apart, cracking, burning, or bulging of a steam or hot water heating system, an air conditioning or automatic fire-protective system.
  • Freezing of a plumbing, heating, air conditioning or automatic, fire-protective sprinkler system, or of a household appliance.
  • Sudden and accidental damage from artificially generated electrical current (does not include loss to a tube, transistor or similar electronic component)

A basic condo/co-op policy should also provide liability protection for incidents such as someone tripping and falling while inside your unit. In addition, if a covered peril should make your condo or co-op uninhabitable, your policy should include a provision to cover additional living expenses incurred if you have to find temporary shelter elsewhere.

When discussing your policy with your agent or insurance company, make sure you have enough liability coverage.

How much does condo insurance cost?

The cost of condo insurance depends on many factors, such as where you live and how much coverage you need.

The average condo insurance cost nationwide is $625, for $60,000 in personal property coverage, with a $1,000 deductible, and $300,000 in liability.

Florida has the highest condo insurance rate on average, $1,293. The weather is a major factor in those costs. The Sunshine State is prone to hurricanes and strong storms. Insurers view condos in that state a higher risk than say Iowa, Wyoming, Vermont and North Dakota, which have the lowest average condo insurance rates.

You can't completely offset higher rates in your state, but you can lessen the blow by shopping around. Get quotes for the same level of coverage from at least three home insurance companies. Make sure you to ask about discounts, including bundling discounts.