What is the difference between a HO6 and HO4 home insurance policy?

What is the difference between a HO6 (condo) and HO4 (renters) insurance policy?

The HO6 and HO4 both cover your personal property and personal liability, but only the HO6 condo policy has additional Coverage A for the interior finishing of the unit:

  HO6 (condo) HO4 (renters)
Personal Property Yes Yes
Liability Yes Yes
Interior Finishings Yes No
Building Structure No No

If you own the condo, you need the HO6. The additional coverage in the HO6 is important because your condo association usually only covers the structure, but not interior finishings like cabinets, countertops, or crown molding. This means in a total loss scenario (the building burns down) you need additional Coverage A on your HO6 insurance policy to restore the unit back to a livable condition. 

How much Coverage A is needed for my HO6 condo policy?

Knowing where the condo association coverage stops and where your coverage should start is key. If your condo needs to be completely rebuilt from the ground up, are you personally responsible for:

  • studs in - literally you get your condo back unfinished, with the studs and no drywall
  • walls in (most common) - walls are up, but you need to put up finishings (flooring, cabinets, countertops, etc)
  • original specification - does not include upgrades you did after buying the unit, but back to original condition. If you added some nice granite countertops, get those covered on your HO6.
  • all in - livable (full restoration)

The difference in coverage you need for "studs in" vs "all in" restoration can be over $100,000 in Coverage A, so double check with your condo association before buying a HO6 policy.

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Young Alfred