HO-6 insurance is also known as standard condo insurance. This insurance policy protects your condo and belongings from the walls in, which is why it’s sometimes referred to as walls-in coverage. This specific policy can only be bought by condominium owners.
What does an HO-6 policy cover?
Your standard condo insurance policy or HO-6 insurance policy covers a list of named perils. Any peril not named on the policy is not covered. The policy may also provide some liability and medical payments coverage.
Make sure to talk to your local insurance agent about other policy details such as loss assessment coverage and dwelling coverage.
Here is a list of the 16 named perils that are usually listed in an HO-6 insurance policy:
- Fire or lightning
- Windstorm or hail
- Riot or civil commotion
- Damage caused by aircraft
- Damage caused by vehicles
- Vandalism or malicious mischief
- 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, and appliances.
- Sudden and accidental tearing apart, cracking, burning, or bulging of a steam or hot water heating system, 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)
Coverages in an HO-6 policy:
- Dwelling: This covers the interior of your condo, things like the floors, walls, cabinets, etc.
- Personal property: This covers your personal property, such as furniture, electronics, appliances, etc.
- Loss of use: If your condo is uninhabitable due to a covered peril, will reimburse you for expenses while you’re displaced.
- Personal liability: If you as the condo owner are sued for an injury that occurred in your home, you're protected with HO-6 insurance. Personal liability coverage is sometimes available at an extra cost.
- Medical payments: This covers the cost of medical bills if you or a guest gets injured in your condo.
What does an HO-6 insurance policy not cover?
An HO-6 insurance policy doesn't cover any perils that are named in the policy. Some of the common things that you aren't covered for include flooding, earthquake damage and mold. The list below is some of the most common coverages not included in an HO-6 policy.
- Intentional injuries to others
- Nuclear hazards
- Damage from birds, rodents, and insects
- Wear and tear
- Damage from underground water (such as sewer backups)
What’s the difference between homeowners insurance and condo insurance?
The main difference between home insurance (HO-3 or HO-5 insurance) and condo insurance is that homeowners insurance covers the structure of the home, while condo insurance only protects everything inside the building. This is why condo insurance is often referred to as walls-in insurance.
The condo association will most likely have what's typically called a “master insurance policy,” which covers the actual building and everything outside the walls, including common areas and the surrounding property. The cost of this insurance is typically split between all condo owners and is included in the condo association fees.
Why do you need condo (HO-6) insurance?
While condo insurance isn't required by law, you may be required to have an HO-6 insurance policy by your condo association. Additionally, if you took out a mortgage for your condo, you're likely required by your lender to have condo insurance.
Beyond any requirements, though, condo insurance is needed so that you have protection in the event of damage or a disaster. It protects you if you're belongings are stolen, if they're damaged in a fire, or even in the event a guest is injured in your condo.
It is important to understand what your HO-6 insurance policy covers and what it does not. Make sure you understand your coverage limit and what level of coverage you need. Find out if you need any additional coverage, and how well your individual unit is protected.
Before deciding which company to take out a condo policy with, call your local insurance agent to make sure you have all of your questions answered. Questions to consider asking include, "Which company offers the best condo insurance coverage?" "What are my policy limits when it comes to covering my condo?" "Do I need more than liability protection?" and "Is flood insurance included in my HO-6?" You can also ask about adding additional coverage policies to ensure your condo is protected.
To see which companies other condo owners recommend, visit our rankings of the best homeowners insurance companies. You can filter by clicking condo, zip code and specific needs to find the best company that works for you.
The content on this site is offered only as a public service to the web community and does not constitute solicitation or provision of legal advice. This site should not be used as a substitute for obtaining legal advice from an insurance company or an attorney licensed or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. You should always consult a suitably qualified attorney regarding any specific legal problem or matter. The comments and opinions expressed on this site are of the individual author and may not reflect the opinions of the insurance company or any individual attorney.