The owners corporation is responsible for making sure all necessary insurance policies are in place and up-to-date. Policies must be with an approved insurer authorised by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority.
Strata managing agents delegated to arrange insurance on behalf of an owners corporation must obtain three quotes, unless it is not reasonable to do so. This helps you know if the policy is value for money. Check exactly what cover you will be provided under the policy and any limitations of the policy.
Types of insurance needed include building insurance, public liability insurance, workers compensation insurance and voluntary workers insurance.
The building must be insured under a damage policy. Schemes with just two lots may be exempt (See: ‘Requirements for large schemes and two lot schemes’ in this guide). The policy must cover the building if damaged or destroyed, and pay for:
- replacing (where destroyed) or reinstating (where damaged but not destroyed) the building back to the same condition it was in when new
- removing debris
- the services of architects and others needed to repair the building.
The building includes owners’ fixtures and fittings. Fixtures and fittings are items like sinks, shower screens, cupboards, internal doors, stoves, common air conditioning systems and intercom systems.
This insurance covers damage to property, death or injury for which the owners corporation could become responsible. The minimum amount of cover is $20 million.
WORKERS COMPENSATION INSURANCE
The owners corporation must have workers compensation insurance, with an approved insurer, where it is required under the Workers Compensation Act 1987. Further information is available from SafeWork NSW, safework.nsw.gov.au or call 13 10 50.
VOLUNTARY WORKERS INSURANCE
This is needed to provide cover for any damage that the owners corporation may become liable for when a person does voluntary work for the owners corporation in the building or on the common property. A voluntary worker is any person who does work without any fee or reward, or without expecting any fee or reward.
WHO INSURES THE CONTENTS OF AN OWNER’S PROPERTY?
It is highly recommended that residents, whether an owner or a tenant, take out adequate insurance on the contents of their property. Even where damage is caused by a common property issue, personal items such as furniture, electrical appliances, curtains and carpets may not be covered. Landlords should also consider specific landlord insurance to suit their circumstances.
© State of New South Wales (NSW Fair Trading). For current information go to fairtrading.gov.au