Multifamily Property Insurance Claims

Multifamily Property Insurance Claims

When damage occurs at multifamily property, whether high-rise condominium, apartment, or townhome complex, there are often multiple competing interests at stake. Property managers, board members, and residents find themselves in the middle of an unfamiliar situation and may not know the most effective way forward.  Per Moody Analytics, multi-family properties are defined as all buildings containing at least two housing units which are adjacent vertically or horizontally.  If built side-by-side, they (1) do not have a wall that extends from ground to roof, or (2) share a heating system, or (3) have interstructural public utilities such as water supply/sewage disposal.  The U.S. Census defines separate multi-family categories for buildings housing two families, three-or-four families, or five-or-more families.

It is important to understand that most multifamily properties have some sort of property management, but may not have a board made up of residents. Apartment complexes usually fall under this category, while condominiums where the units are owned, typically have a board made up of residents from the community.  Additionally, most multifamily HOAs will have a property manager or community association manager in addition to their board.

According to investopedia, property managers are, first and foremost, responsible for overseeing the ongoing condition of the owner’s property(s) and ensuring tenant satisfaction. They can assist in the facilitating of regular meetings, and provide guidance on best practices for administrative dealings within the community. They can also refer ann manage vendor relationships for the community.

HOAs are typically governed by a board, which is composed of a small number of members chosen by a vote of fellow members. HOA boards are in charge of being custodians of the community, caring for the common areas in the development, and making financial decisions on behalf of the community they represent. HOAs are nonprofit corporations, and HOA boards have a fiduciary responsibility to the residents of their community.  One of the potentially large financial decisions they can be tasked with is filing and resolving an insurance claim, and in many instances it may be the board’s first.

Understanding the respective roles of property managers and HOA board members, one can see why having representatives who specialize in the application of policy, quantification of damage, and presentation of a substantiated claim can be conducive to a smooth and amicable process for all involved.  Public Adjusters can take the burden off of the board and property manager and make sure all of the communities responsibilities under the policy are met, that all of the insured damage is accounted for, and that the claim is resolved accurately. This leaves the board free to work with their preferred contractor or choose a contractor to perform a determined scope of work.  If you own or are the representative for a multifamily that has sustained damage, please give Prime Adjustments a call for a free consultation to see if we can assist.


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