Apartment insurance isn’t a specific product you can purchase. Rather, you have a host of insurance options at your disposal to safeguard your apartment no matter if you’re a landlord or a tenant, including:
If you’re an owner-occupier of an apartment in a multi-storey building or complex, you should consider insurance for your space. Why? Because while your body corporate’s insurance covers the apartment’s structure, it won’t cover the inside of your apartment. You’ll need a contents insurance policy to cover your belongings, internal walls, fixtures and fittings inside your apartment.
If you’re leasing your investment property to a tenant, you might also consider getting landlord’s insurance that also includes contents cover if your apartment is rented and furnished.
Renters don’t need home building insurance for their apartments as the physical structure of the apartment that you are renting is protected by your landlord’s body corporate insurance. However, if you’re a renter you may want contents insurance to protect your personal belongings.
If you have strata insurance for your apartment, it typically covers loss or damage to your apartment’s external structure caused by insured events like flooding, storm, fire and more. It can also include temporary accommodation cover for apartment owners should their homes become uninhabitable due to these events.
On the other hand, if you have a contents insurance policy for your apartment, it covers your apartment’s internal walls, fixtures and fittings (e.g. kitchen cabinetry) in the event that they’re damaged or destroyed by certain events, as well as your contents inside the apartment.
It also covers your personal belongings in the apartment if they’re stolen, damaged or destroyed by those same insured events (e.g. fire, storm, rainwater damage, etc).
Depending on your level of cover and subject to your policy’s limits, contents insurance covers such possessions as:
If you’re leasing out your apartment, you can get landlords insurance which can cover:
It’s important to check the relevant Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) of a policy for the full details of what’s covered before you purchase.
There are several reasons it’s important to get insurance for your apartment.
If your apartment is under strata title and you’re paying body corporate fees, your body corporate legally must take out strata insurance which covers the entire building or complex. In that case, there would be no need for you to take out your own home/building insurance policy. Your strata insurance generally covers your building, external walls, gutters, balcony, ceiling and shared facilities, such as:
However, if required, you’ll need contents insurance to cover the fixtures and fittings inside your apartment, as well as your personal belongings (e.g. furniture, appliances and carpets).
If you pay body corporate fees, the building’s strata insurance can cover you for damage to your apartment’s structure, depending on the policy. However, you might want to consider taking out a Landlord’s policy with contents coverage to protect any furnishings you provide or belongings you may have left with the apartment.
As well as standard coverage inclusions such as fire and storm damage, some insurance providers might offer optional extras to add to your landlord insurance. These extras can cover you if your tenant defaults on their rent and legal liability (if someone is injured in your apartment and you’re at fault). Some landlord insurance policies may even offer cover for malicious damage to your rental property caused by tenants. If you’ve left appliances and furniture in your leased-out apartment, a contents insurance policy can protect them against malicious damage or theft by a tenant (if this cover is added to your policy) – just be sure to check whether your landlord insurance covers contents or if you would need to purchase contents coverage in addition to your landlord insurance.
As an apartment owner, the responsible thing to do is protect your investment property.
If you’re a tenant in an apartment, you won’t need to take out insurance for the structure of the apartment itself – that’s the responsibility of the owner/body corporate. However, you will be responsible for protecting your personal belongings from damage and theft, which you can do with a contents insurance policy.
Damage to the building (e.g. external walls and balconies) or shared facilities (e.g. swimming pools, common areas, lifts and car parks) is typically covered through strata insurance, which is paid for through body corporate fees.
No, claims for building defects or faults are generally not covered by any type of insurance; most, if not all, insurance policies typically have a defects exclusion.
There are several factors that can affect the cost of your contents insurance premium. These factors may include:
You can potentially reduce the cost of contents insurance for your apartment if you: