The communities of neighbors often live situations of uncertainty when there is an accident in the building they inhabit. The rupture of the boiler, leaks in the terrace or the damages in the elevator cause that an uninsured or undersecure community, has to face a large spill to pay for the damages. As damages are almost always unforeseen, not all tenants are happy to afford a large amount of money to fix them. This fact often leads to discussions between the interested parties.
For this reason, although the insurance of Communities of Neighbors is mandatory only in some Autonomous Communities, many owners hire it to avoid moments of tension in the meetings of neighbors and stop paying large sums of money for each accident that occurred. In this way, the insurer is in charge of assuming the possible damages.
The contracting of this type of product is widespread among the communities of Spanish neighbors, in particular, there are a total of 743,000 buildings insured. On the other hand, insurance companies dealt with up to 906,000 claims last year for a total of 372 million euros, according to the Insurance Business Association (Unespa).
The risks covered in the insurance of Communities depend on the type of policy contracted and the company with which the policy is subscribed, however, the general coverages that it usually covers are the following:
Property damage coverage is one of the most common in Community of Owners insurance. This service is responsible for covering the damage caused to the building. They usually take care of the damage caused by a fire, explosions, broken glass, pipe jams or water damage due to leaks or leaks. In fact, the latter are the most frequent mishaps, according to Unespa. The association indicates that in 2013 there were 422,665 water accidents in insured buildings. This type of damage causes insurers to pay large compensations. The companies had to pay 131 million euros to deal with repairs and compensation caused by water. In addition, the insurance employer highlights that the average price of repairing a leak is around 310 euros.
Civil liability is also included in most insurance of this type to indemnify neighbors, co-owners and third parties who suffer damage to the building. In this way, if a part of the cornice of the building is detached and causes a prejudice to a passerby, this policy would take care of the compensation for the damages caused. In the same way, it also protects the rest of the owners and co-owners against damages that they may suffer inside the building, however, they are not considered as third parties within the policy. For example, if the vehicle of one of the owners of a housing block is damaged by the detachment of a cornice from the building, you will be compensated for the RC coverage. However, this will be done for the proportional part of the insurance of the rest of your neighbors and not yours. This is because a person cannot be considered third in front of himself.
According to Unespa, incidents framed within the coverage of CR are the second most common. In 2013 alone, there were a total of 110,874 claims for this type of risk in Spain. In addition, according to the association, the average compensation for civil liability amounts to 805 euros.
The guarantee for theft can be included in an owner’s insurance, everything depends on the policy that is contracted and the guarantees that are decided. In this case, it is responsible for covering the community of neighbors against the damages suffered by theft or even theft. In many cases, it also includes the replacement of keys and locks or stolen personal effects.
Temporary rehousing coverage is designed for a situation in which, because of an accident, the owners or co-owners must be taken to a hotel or rental housing. This relocation is usually temporary and usually lasts until the damage to the building is solved or when it is safe to return to inhabit it. This occurs in cases of fire in which the house is badly damaged, gas explosion or collapse, for example. An event of these characteristics was lived in the building of Carabanchel that collapsed in August. On this occasion, the firefighters had to evict all the neighbors due to the insecurity of the building, so the insurer was in charge of rehousing them in another house.
In case the community of neighbors has employees to perform cleaning, maintenance or a doorman, additional coverages can be hired to protect them. Normally, this service is responsible for covering health allowances and expenses in the event of the worker’s death, invalidity or disability. It is also responsible for health expenses for medical assistance, travel and stays.
Is it mandatory to take out a Neighborhood Community insurance?
The insurance of Communities of Neighbors is mandatory only in some Spanish Autonomous Communities. At the national level, there is no rule that obliges the contracting of this type of policy, since the Horizontal Property Law does not establish that the neighboring communities have to contract it. However, the Building Quality Law of each community determines whether or not it is mandatory to contract this policy depending on the year of construction of the building. For example, in the Community of Madrid and Valencia there is an obligation to contract this type of insurance with fire and civil liability coverage against third parties.