Personal Finance

Condo insurance question (QC)

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  • Aug 23rd, 2021 10:56 pm
[OP]
Member
May 8, 2012
425 posts
156 upvotes
Ottawa

Condo insurance question (QC)

We live in a row of townhouses and recently had water damage in our unit (laundry leaked).

From what I understand after dealing with the insurance so far, our personal insurance would cover any personal items and improvements, while the condo insurance would be responsible for any structural repairs.

The deductible for water damage for the condo insurance is $10k. My question is: are we responsible for that deductible, or would it be split between all the townhouses? From what I understand, the condo is obliged to have a $2500 fund for insurance deductible purposes. I'm just not sure how it works.

Thanks.
10 replies
Deal Fanatic
Jan 15, 2017
5234 posts
5278 upvotes
Ottawa
As I assume that you own the laundry then more than likely yes, the condo corp will bill you for the deductible. Check your personal condo insurance to see if it covers issues like this.

The condo insurance deductible fund is only for items within the board's jurisdiction. For instance, had the water line to the washer burst in the wall and caused the leak then that would most likely be the responsibility of the board to pay and the deductible would be shared by all owners.

FWIW - this is a major issue in BC and Alberta where condo insurance premiums have risen drastically over the past couple of years and condo boards are having to accept deductibles of $50,000+ in order to even get insurance.
Member
Aug 25, 2009
368 posts
359 upvotes
Here’s my story you can use as reference and get some idea:

I had water damage from the unit above. When I called my insurance to start a claim, within 5 mins of the conversation, my insurance said the condo association’s insurance needs to start the claim and nothing was needed from my insurance at that time.

So I talked to the condo association so that they could start the claim. The condo association rep visited my condo and look at the damage. We both agreed the cost to clean and repair would be less than the association’s deductible. So I agreed to help the association get some quotes for cleaning and repairing. And the association paid the bill.

The association tried to chase after the owner responsible for the damage, but that’s a different side story.

Hope that helps. This was in Montreal.

Edit: to answer one of your questions, based on my experience, it’s the condo association that’s supposed to pay the deductible. But it’s up to the association to charge everything back to you if they deem you responsible for the damage. That’s where your personal insurance should kick in. Good luck! Report back your experience when it’s all done.
Sr. Member
Jul 22, 2015
691 posts
253 upvotes
Ontario
Timo wrote: Here’s my story you can use as reference and get some idea:

I had water damage from the unit above. When I called my insurance to start a claim, within 5 mins of the conversation, my insurance said the condo association’s insurance needs to start the claim and nothing was needed from my insurance at that time.

So I talked to the condo association so that they could start the claim. The condo association rep visited my condo and look at the damage. We both agreed the cost to clean and repair would be less than the association’s deductible. So I agreed to help the association get some quotes for cleaning and repairing. And the association paid the bill.

The association tried to chase after the owner responsible for the damage, but that’s a different side story.

Hope that helps. This was in Montreal.

Edit: to answer one of your questions, based on my experience, it’s the condo association that’s supposed to pay the deductible. But it’s up to the association to charge everything back to you if they deem you responsible for the damage. That’s where your personal insurance should kick in. Good luck! Report back your experience when it’s all done.
I'm in a similar situation. Unit above mine had a leak with their dehumidifier, We have a report which indicates that they were 100% at fault. The condo corp is paying for the emergency work and then going after the home owner. Now, if I want to put my ceiling back to its original state (with texture), I have to open a claim with my insurance...now here's the kicker: they are not certain if I will still have to pay my $1000 deductible AND MY insurance will increase across my multiple properties if i put in a claim. With home insurance they don't assign fault to one party. I'm in Ontario, but not sure if it's the same where you are.
Member
Aug 25, 2009
368 posts
359 upvotes
Acheewawa wrote: I'm in a similar situation. Unit above mine had a leak with their dehumidifier, We have a report which indicates that they were 100% at fault. The condo corp is paying for the emergency work and then going after the home owner. Now, if I want to put my ceiling back to its original state (with texture), I have to open a claim with my insurance...now here's the kicker: they are not certain if I will still have to pay my $1000 deductible AND MY insurance will increase across my multiple properties if i put in a claim. With home insurance they don't assign fault to one party. I'm in Ontario, but not sure if it's the same where you are.
Do you know if the condo was originally delivered with the ceiling texture? I would have thought the association's insurance company is required to restore everything to its original state.
Sr. Member
Jul 22, 2015
691 posts
253 upvotes
Ontario
Timo wrote: Do you know if the condo was originally delivered with the ceiling texture? I would have thought the association's insurance company is required to restore everything to its original state.
That's what I would have expected too, but unfortunately no. The condo was originally delivered with the ceiling texture. In fact, if we wanted a smooth texture, it would have cost more. We are the original owners and the unit is only 3 years old. The condo board's insurance states that they are responsible for the emergency work and putting drywall back on (they will then go after the homeowner's insurance for reimbursement). Painting and texture is my responsibility according to them. And of coarse, you can't just put texture in the damaged area as it will look like a patch job. We will have to get the entire unit's ceiling scraped and re-textured and painted!
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Aug 29, 2012
8681 posts
8287 upvotes
skeet50 wrote: As I assume that you own the laundry then more than likely yes, the condo corp will bill you for the deductible. Check your personal condo insurance to see if it covers issues like this.

The condo insurance deductible fund is only for items within the board's jurisdiction. For instance, had the water line to the washer burst in the wall and caused the leak then that would most likely be the responsibility of the board to pay and the deductible would be shared by all owners.

FWIW - this is a major issue in BC and Alberta where condo insurance premiums have risen drastically over the past couple of years and condo boards are having to accept deductibles of $50,000+ in order to even get insurance.
Exactly, many insurers have withdrawn from the market and many condo boards are stuck with untenable insurance conditions, especially because of water damage.

Things like these are why I never want to deal with a condo board, dictating every minute thing we can do, slacking over raising fees for urgent repairs, and with endless arguing and drama. It's simply a pain that is better completely avoided.

I don't want to have to answer to anybody.
Sr. Member
Dec 3, 2019
510 posts
464 upvotes
Ontario
I don't think the question can be answered without reading the condominium declaration and by-laws for the specific condo.

In my Ontario condo we did not have it specified so the condo had to pay for the deductible if the unit owner was at fault.
As a result a few years ago the condo board put in a by-law stating that the unit holder had to pay the deductible.

I would ask the condo manager to help you find the relevant section in your condo declaration and by-laws first.
Only after I would try to apply the general law.

manu117 wrote: We live in a row of townhouses and recently had water damage in our unit (laundry leaked).

From what I understand after dealing with the insurance so far, our personal insurance would cover any personal items and improvements, while the condo insurance would be responsible for any structural repairs.

The deductible for water damage for the condo insurance is $10k. My question is: are we responsible for that deductible, or would it be split between all the townhouses? From what I understand, the condo is obliged to have a $2500 fund for insurance deductible purposes. I'm just not sure how it works.

Thanks.
[OP]
Member
May 8, 2012
425 posts
156 upvotes
Ottawa
Follow up question: how exactly does the condo go after the owner to cover the deductible? Do they need proof that the claim is due to the owner's personal property or due to negligence?

Thanks!
Deal Addict
User avatar
Oct 13, 2007
4382 posts
3232 upvotes
Edmonton
manu117 wrote: Follow up question: how exactly does the condo go after the owner to cover the deductible? Do they need proof that the claim is due to the owner's personal property or due to negligence?

Thanks!
As an adjuster, I can tell you that condo claims are the worst. Basically, nobody knows what's covered and it's a nightmare to sort through.

Actually, the answers are always within the condo by-laws and policy wording of the insurance policies of the condo association and the the condo owner. So it's necessary to work through that. It may not be the same answer for all condos.

As far as the deductible, if the claim is over the deductible, the owner may be asked to reimburse not only the deductible but also may be subject to recovery of the loss in excess of the deductible (the insurer's portion) if the owner is legally liable for the damages. If legally liable, the owner's policy may cover the damages under the liability section. So, in effect, you may have two claims under your own policy, one for physical damage and one for liability and depending on the nature and extent of damage, there e could be a third claim through the condo association for its portion of the property damage.
Sr. Member
Dec 3, 2019
510 posts
464 upvotes
Ontario
It really comes down to the manager's discretion about whose fault it is.
Sometimes the responding plumber will make a report but the wording is usually in favour of the management company.
Remember the management company gives the plumbing company very lucrative million dollar contracts.

The condo will pay the deductible and turn around and give you a bill to reimburse them. In Ontario if you do not pay this invoice within 90 days the condo will place a lien on your unit.
manu117 wrote: Follow up question: how exactly does the condo go after the owner to cover the deductible? Do they need proof that the claim is due to the owner's personal property or due to negligence?

Thanks!

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