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How we find you the best home insurance in Toronto

Home to nearly three million people, Toronto is a city chock-full of dwellings: houses, condos, apartments — you name it. Investments this big are worth protecting. That’s why finding the right home insurance is so important.

Unlike auto insurance, home insurance isn’t mandatory by law — that goes for Toronto, and every other city in Canada. But in most cases, home insurance is a necessity. For example, most banks and lenders won’t give you a mortgage unless you provide proof of home insurance first.

Home insurance can also refer to condo insurance. This page will give you a good idea of all the things you need to consider before buying home insurance in Toronto. Here at LowestRates.ca, you can compare home insurance quotes from the Toronto’s top insurers in just a few minutes.

How much does home insurance cost in Toronto?

It’s difficult to say. An easy way to get home insurance estimates from a wide array of insurers is to apply for a quote through a rate comparison site like LowestRates.ca. When you complete a form with us, you may notice your quoted premium varies by company. That’s because insurers approach risk differently. How much they charge for home insurance depends on the size and quality of their insurance pool (i.e., the households and individuals that pay premiums to the insurance company). Fill out a form and we’ll show you quotes from 10+ insurance companies serving Toronto.

What risks are specific to Toronto?

  • Fire. Toronto’s dense population means building fires can spread quickly to adjacent properties.
  • Cold temperatures. With temperatures that can plummet to -30C, Toronto residents need to be on guard for frozen or burst water pipes in the winter time.
  • Flooding. Because of its low elevation, Toronto can see flash flooding, which can cause severe water damage to residences.
  • Earthquakes. They’ve been known to occur in Toronto, though they’re usually moderate in scale. Still, an earthquake could do considerable damage to a city full of multi-unit residences.

What risks does home insurance cover in Toronto?

Generally speaking, home insurance will cover your:

  • Personal belongings (e.g., appliances, furniture, some electronics)
  • Additional living expenses (should you need to relocate for a period of time)
  • Personal liability, should you be sued for an injury sustained on your property

Generally speaking, home insurance covers the following risks:

  • Fire
  • Lightning
  • Smoke damage (excluding fireplaces)
  • Theft
  • Wind and hail
  • Electrical current
  • Explosion
  • Vandalism
  • Water damage
  • Broken windows
  • Falling objects (unless propelled by a landslide, avalanche, or earthquake)

If you’re like most Torontonians, you live in a condo. That means you’ll need a personal condo insurance policy. This is different from your condo corporation’s commercial policy, which does not cover your unit. A personal condo policy will cover:

  • Personal property (e.g., clothing, appliances and furniture, and items stored in your locker)
  • Additional living expenses, should the event result in you having to relocate.
  • Unit upgrades
  • Your personal liability for any injury or damages unintentionally caused to others

What risks won’t home insurance cover in Toronto?

Unfortunately, home insurance doesn’t protect against everything. Most policies won’t cover:

  • Sewer backup
  • Flooding caused by overland water
  • Earthquakes
  • Landslides
  • Damage from freezing outside the home
  • Pollution
  • Damage from insects and rodents
  • Water damage caused by frozen or burst pipes in the winter
  • Damage to property acquired illegally

When it comes to personal condo insurance, here’s what’s usually not covered:

  • Water damage caused by flood or underground water
  • Earthquakes and mudslides
  • Damage caused by settling, deterioration, or contamination
  • Damage caused by birds, rodents, insects, or domestic animals
  • Bodily injury or property damage that is expected or intended by the insured
  • Business activities

What kind of home insurance do you need in Toronto?

There are four basic types of home insurance policies:

Comprehensive - The most extensive and costly home insurance policy available, it covers your home’s structure and the contents within it from all perils and losses, save for any perils that have been explicitly left out of your policy.

Basic or Named Perils - This type of home insurance policy insures your house and personal property for perils specifically named within the policy.

Broad - A broad home insurance policy insures your house for all risks of direct physical loss or damage unless excluded. It also offers protection for your personal property, but only against named perils. A broad policy is generally considered to be a good middle ground between a comprehensive and a basic policy.

No Frills - Very basic coverage for properties that don’t meet normal underwriting standards

Additional or optional coverage can be purchased for things like sewer backup, flooding, earthquakes, fine jewelry and home-based business equipment. These will top up the limits on these items in your regular home insurance policy.

What can you do to save on home insurance in Toronto?

Living in Toronto is expensive. To make sure you’re saving as much as you can on home insurance, it’s important to learn about all the applicable discounts out there. Most home insurance companies offer discounts for:

  • Bundling insurance policies (e.g., auto and home) with the same insurer
  • Increasing your deductible (e.g., the amount you pay out of pocket for damages)
  • Paying an annual lump sum up front as opposed to monthly premiums, which include administrative costs
  • Being part of a union, certain organizations, or an alumnus of certain universities
  • Equipping your home with smoke detectors and monitored intruder alarms
  • Never having made an insurance claim (being “claims free”)
  • Being a senior citizen
  • Newly-built homes can sometimes qualify for a discount

What are the best home insurance companies in Toronto?

When it comes to home insurance, there’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all approach. What matters most is that you get the coverage you need at a price you can afford. So take the time to shop around, do research on the insurers on your shortlist (it’s possible to check their ratings online and verify whether complaints have been made against them with the Better Business Bureau), and don’t hold back from asking an agent or broker any questions that come to mind.

Here’s a list of some of the major home insurance companies operating in Toronto:

  • Intact Insurance
  • The Co-operators
  • Wawanesa
  • TD Insurance
  • Aviva

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