Need to Know Information for the Condominium Buyer

So… you just purchased a condominium unit in Southwest Florida with plans to occupy the unit about three months each year during the winter. Your unit is on the fourth floor overlooking the back bay. Typically, the balance of the year, the unit will not be occupied or may be rented.

  • What happens if a pipe breaks and floods my unit while I am away?
  • What happens if my unit is vandalized or burglarized while I am away?
  • What coverage do I have when the unit is being renovated and I move my furniture to storage?
  • What happens when I rent the unit to others?

Some definitions to consider……”Vacant” means entirely empty. “Unoccupied” means belongings of sufficient value are present to make it reasonable to believe that the insured has not abandoned them.

Typically, if a unit is “vacant” for 30 consecutive days, the following losses or damage will not be covered. Refer to your policy for specific language that may apply.

  • Vandalism
  • Accidental discharge from fire protective sprinkler system, plumbing, heating, AC, hot water heater, appliances. (Possible coverage if systems have been shut off and drained.)
  • Glass breakage
  • Water damage
  • Theft, attempted theft
  • Malicious mischief
  • If you plan to renovate your unit, moving your belongings to storage, your unit may be considered “vacant”. Always discuss this situation with your agent…avoid surprises.

Typically, the unit can be rented to others on an annual basis. Some insurance carriers will endorse the policy for “rental to others” for less than a year. If you plan to rent, discuss this in detail with your agent. Not having the proper endorsement or policy could prohibit payment of a claim.

SWFL Insurance Agency can answer any questions and provide competitive condominium insurance proposals. Please call us at 239-265-9577 or visit

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