FirstService Residential Shares Insurance Information Managed Communities Need to Know for Week Three of National Preparedness Month
disaster planning and preparedness
DANIA BEACH, Fla. (September 21, 2018) – Entering the third week of National Preparedness Month, FirstService Residential – North America’s top property management company – is stressing the importance for community associations to have the proper levels and type of insurance coverage in the event of a disaster.
“There is an assumption that as long as associations carry insurance, their community is appropriately covered and protected in the face of a disaster. That’s not always the case, because not all coverage is equal to begin with, and coverage needs and circumstances change over time,” said Chuck Fallon, CEO of FirstService Residential. “A responsible property manager can facilitate the review process for boards by connecting them with insurance experts to conduct regular reviews of the community’s policies and make sure they carry the right types and proper levels of coverage in case a community needs to rebuild and restore.”
In observance of National Preparedness Month’s week three theme – “Check Your Insurance Coverage” – FirstService Residential’s in-house insurance professionals at FS Insurance Brokers, a subsidiary of FirstService Financial, put together the following tips board members need to know to properly insure their communities:
- Know the essentials of property coverage Property coverage needs to include all buildings, structures (bridges, gazebos fences, etc.), miscellaneous property (indoor/outdoor furnishings, art, trees, etc.), and the expenses necessary to run the association in the event of significant property loss. Note that most policies have exclusions for things like flood, earthquake, pollution, wear and tear, etc., and that coverage for these types of events may require their own policies.
- Understand that not all coverage is equal It’s important to understand that different policies offer varying levels of coverage depending on how the policy is written. For example, some policies are written as a named perils policy, which means they specifically list the types of damages that would be covered (e.g., fire, theft, vandalism, etc.). While other policies are written as open peril policies, in which case the policy provides a list of the damages that would not be covered (e.g., water damage). What may seem like an insignificant wording difference will have a significant impact at the time of a claim. Some other examples include blanket versus schedule coverage, actual cash value versus replacement cost value, occurrence versus claims-made and many other stipulations that can impact coverage. Make sure to consult with a professional agent with experience in association insurance.
- General liability coverage is crucial to have When it comes to liability, it is imperative for managed communities to have general liability coverage. This coverage protects the Association from lawsuits brought against the association that involve bodily injury or property damage claims—. Seek a “comprehensive general form,” which protects all association activities, both on and off the premises. Discuss this coverage with the community’s property management company and insurance agent to determine if additional coverage is necessary.
- Weather the storm with umbrella liability Umbrella coverage provides an additional layer of coverage beyond general or primary liability coverage by providing additional coverage when an association’s policy limits have been met.
- The right property management company can help secure proper coverage Through FS Insurance Brokers, FirstService Residential makes it easier for its managed properties to procure competitive insurance that delivers savings to the community and enhances coverage. FirstService Financial’s programs are developed and operated by a dedicated, professional team, with more than 20 years of experience in real estate, banking and insurance industries.
About FirstService Residential
FirstService Residential is North America's largest manager of residential communities and the preferred partner of HOAs, community associations and strata corporations in the U.S. and Canada. FirstService Residential's managed communities include low-, mid- and high-rise condominiums and cooperatives, single-family homes, master-planned, lifestyle and active adult communities, and rental and commercial properties.
With an unmatched combination of deep industry experience, local market expertise and personalized attention, FirstService Residential delivers proven solutions and exceptional service that add value, enhance lifestyles and make a difference, every day, for every resident and community it manages. FirstService Residential is a subsidiary of FirstService Corporation, a North American leader in the property services sector. For more information, visit www.fsresidential.com.