1 May 2015
Before buying into a strata complex in Canberra, there are a couple of things to tick off your checklist. This is a very different type of property than the traditional freestanding model and, as the title is held in partnership with other owners, you’ve got to approach insurance with a team mentality. However, a lot of owners aren’t too sure of what the body corporate has to insure, and what they’ll have to think about once they’ve moved in.
What is the body corporate responsible for?
Rather than paying the premium for an individual home, residential strata insurance – or body corporate insurance as it’s sometimes known as – is a general policy that covers all the common property in your strata block. In the ACT, every property that’s registered under a unit or strata title has to have this kind of insurance in place – no matter if they’re units or
The premium costs are spread across all owners under the title, which usually cover shared spaces, such as pool areas, gardens and car parks, and can often extend to things like personal injury and public liability.
What are my obligations?
Like any other insurance policy, there are limits to what body corporate insurance extends to. You’ve still got to pay all the rates and levies for your individual unit – but the policy doesn’t stretch to, amongst other things, carpet, lights or furniture. In essence, you’ll need to look after the contents of your own apartment. There are often other exclusions that are unique to each insurer, so have a chat with your strata manager about the exact terms and conditions.
Insurance is an important issue that needs careful attention. A strata manager can ensure that the building has sufficient coverage, and arrange for additional coverage or policy renewals as required.