Ontario to Alberta Insurance Guide

Everything You Need to Know About Home and Auto Insurance When Moving from Ontario to Alberta

Are you planning to move from Ontario to Alberta? Have you recently moved and are unsure what actions to take regarding your insurance? If you have questions, we have answers. Our friendly and knowledgeable insurance brokers here at Cornerstone Insurance Brokers Ltd. can help you with all your home, auto, and other insurance needs. We frequently answer questions such as, how does insurance work in Alberta? Can I keep the same insurance company I had in Ontario? Where do I find the best coverage for my family and lifestyle? The best place to start is with experienced, friendly insurance brokers like the ones here at Cornerstone Insurance. We know that moving to a new province takes a lot of planning, preparation, and coordination. The last thing we want you to feel is stress about insurance. That’s why we created this comprehensive guide to answer your top questions about insurance coverage in Alberta. If you still have questions or want to get started finding a policy right away, get in touch with our team to request an insurance quote.

When to Update Your Home and Auto Insurance While Moving

Although Ontario and Alberta are hundreds of kilometres apart, there are many similarities between insurance providers. Many of the same companies that offer insurance policies in Ontario also provide insurance policies here in Alberta, which means you can often keep the same insurance provider when you move. However, just because you can keep the same insurance company doesn’t always mean you should. 

While moving, it’s essential to notify your insurance company directly or through your insurance broker. Most insurance providers will cover two homes for a period of 30 days due to a move. As soon as you’re ready to pack up and move, inform your insurance provider, and then again once you settle into your new destination. Then, once you’re settled, it’s the perfect time to get a second opinion on your insurance. You’ll need to update your policy based on your new address, so why not compare it with other offers? Still trying to figure out what to look for? On this page, we’ll cover what you need to know to get your car insurance and home insurance set up in Alberta with the right coverage for you. 

The Difference Between Auto Insurance in Ontario and Auto Insurance in Alberta

Similar to Ontario, the insurance system in Albert is privately owned. This means you can shop around to find the best coverage at the best rate for your unique needs. Alberta insurance companies compete to offer you the best coverage at competitive rates. While this means you can find the best coverage to fit your needs, it does involve time and research. Working with an insurance broker can save you time and stress because we know insurance inside and out. We have connections to many insurance providers, but we don’t work for them; we work for you. We always work on your behalf to find a policy that matches your best interests. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Insurance in Alberta

Is car insurance mandatory in Alberta?

All motor vehicles require insurance coverage from your primary vehicle to your RV to your recreational ATV. Basic car insurance is mandatory in Alberta, regardless of which type of vehicle you drive or where you drive it. Most Albertans add coverage beyond the minimum to protect themselves against vandalism, collisions with wildlife, and other unexpected accidents. 

How does mandatory car insurance coverage differ between Ontario and Alberta?

ON Mandatory CoverageAB Mandatory Coverage
Third-party liabilityThird-party liability
Accident benefitsAccident benefits
DCPD (Direct Compensation for Property Damage)DCPD (Direct Compensation for Property Damage)
Uninsured automobile protection

What is the DCPD model?

The direct compensation for property damage (DCPD) model of insurance means that in the event of a no-fault car accident, each driver seeks compensation directly from their insurer. This model was adopted in Alberta on January 1, 2022 to help individuals making insurance claims get through the process sooner and easier.

What are my choices for optional auto insurance coverage in Alberta?

While only the basic coverage is mandatory, many Albertans prefer to add extra coverage to give them peace of mind while on the roads during all four seasons. Some options for expanding your insurance policy include collision coverage, comprehensive coverage, and rental car coverage in the event you need a rental car while yours is in for repairs. 

The rate you pay for your policy will be determined by how much coverage you add on. Some discounts are available, such as with windshield coverage. Claims on repairs for windshields are quite common in Alberta, driving up comprehensive coverage fees across the province. Policy owners who agree to reduce their windshield claim amounts and pay for minor repairs out of pocket can drastically reduce their insurance premiums. Ask our brokers about this option and whether it is worthwhile for you, or ask your insurance provider directly. 

What types of auto insurance are available in Alberta?

There are different types of vehicle insurance in Alberta, depending on what you’re driving and where. Standard auto insurance is available for your primary car, van, SUV, or truck. There are also various other insurance packages to protect all your recreational vehicles, including ATV/snowmobile insurance, motorcycle insurance, and RV insurance

Commercial vehicle insurance is also required if you own a business that requires commercial vehicle use or a fleet of vehicles.

Is car insurance cheaper in Alberta or Ontario?

For the most part, car insurance tends to be more affordable in Alberta. However, your policy rate will depend on your experience, driving record, and use of your vehicle. When you work with an experienced insurance broker, you can often find discounts and bundled offers you might not find on your own.

How to Keep Your Home Insurance While You Move

While you’re in the process of moving, most insurance providers will cover you for an overlap of 30 days. To obtain this coverage, you must inform and update the insurance provider of your moving plans and dates. Not contacting your insurance company to notify them of your move could prevent you from receiving coverage. 

Can House Insurance Be Transferred?

In some cases, you may be able to keep your same insurance provider and same policy coverage when you move to a new home, but it’s not guaranteed. Each insurance provider is different, so it is best to talk to your insurance company or broker before you move to find out what coverage options are available.

When moving provinces, the location, environmental factors, value, and more will affect your premiums. This makes moving the best time to review your policy and shop around for other coverage and rate options. Our insurance brokers are always happy to help you find the best insurance opportunity.

FAQs About Residential Home Insurance in Alberta

When moving to Alberta to a new home, condo, or renting somewhere new, getting the right insurance to protect your things can give you peace of mind. Knowing what coverage you need and where to find the best quote is a task our insurance brokers are happy to help you answer. If you have more questions regarding residential insurance in Alberta, our insurance brokers have answers. You can also refer to the following answers to the most frequently asked questions our clients ask us when moving from BC to Alberta. 

Is home insurance mandatory in Alberta?

No, home insurance is not mandatory in Alberta, but it is strongly encouraged to protect yourself, your home, and your family. In many cases, financial providers will make it a requirement before approving a mortgage. 

How is a home insurance policy determined in Alberta?

The way a home insurance policy is determined is similar to Ontario. Your insurance policy will be determined by the location of the property, the age of the building, the cost to rebuild the home, and the risk factors. Additional recommended coverage specific to your circumstance will also influence the best policy for you. 

How much is home insurance in Alberta?

The cost of your policy depends on the evaluation of your property. This evaluation can vary depending on whether you live in a city, a smaller center, or a rural area. It also depends on the amount of coverage you need, your resources, and your budget. Several other factors can influence the price of your insurance, including renovations and home improvement, the type of structure, your insurance history, and other security features. 

Are my personal belongings covered by home insurance?

Yes, the personal belongings that are kept inside your home, detached garage or other building on your property are all covered by home insurance. This can include your furniture, electronics, items of clothing, jewelry, and more. Any high-value items require additional coverage. 

What should be included in home insurance coverage?

Your exact home insurance coverage will depend on the policy you choose, but in general, the most common things that are covered by home insurance include the following:

  • Bylaws coverage
  • Fire department charges coverage
  • Identity theft coverage
  • Service line coverage
  • Sewer backup coverage
  • Guaranteed replacement cost coverage
  • Jewelry coverage
  • Property insurance
  • Coverage to protect against water damage
  • Additional living expenses for repairs and rebuilding your home. 

Are there discounts on home insurance policies in Alberta?

At Cornerstone Insurance, our brokers seek to find you discounts where possible. Some examples of discounts our customers are eligible for include: 

  • Alarm discount
  • Claims-free discount
  • Roof discount
  • Siding discount
  • Gated community discount
  • Loyalty discount
  • Mature discount
  • Mortgage-free discount
  • Multi-policy discount
  • New home discount
  • Multi-resident discount
  • Bundling of insurance discounts

What is high-value home insurance in Alberta?

Have you purchased or built a dream home that is valued at over $1 million? High-value home insurance is the policy you need to protect your dream home. Our insurance brokers can help you find an affordable rate with the right coverage. In addition to protecting your home, high-value home insurance usually includes coverage of other high-value items, such as jewelry or fine art collections. 

Are floods and water leaks covered by home insurance in Alberta?

Potential water damage is a concern many homeowners have, both from environmental risks to accidents inside the home. Coverage for water damage depends on your insurance policy, though a typical home insurance policy will cover water damage due to the following circumstances:

  • Damage caused by a sudden flood of water from an indoor source such as indoor plumbing, heating, and air conditioner systems.
  • Damage caused by malfunction of indoor appliances, such as washing machines, dishwashers, aquariums, and water beds.
  • Damage caused by water escape from a public water main. 

Coverage is usually provided to restore the damage caused by the water, but not to fix the original problem or device that malfunctioned. Those costs are up to you. Additional insurance coverage is available for other circumstances. You can ask your insurance company about your options or talk to an insurance broker.

What type of water damage is not covered under Alberta home insurance?

Preventative home maintenance is essential to keep your home protected, especially when insurance does not cover those risks. In the event that water damage is caused by a failure to maintain or repair an aspect of your home, in most cases, home insurance will not cover those costs. This could include failing to maintain or fix your roof, not installing a sump pump in your basement, or not winterizing your indoor pipes and having them freeze. 

Are sewer lines covered by home insurance in Alberta?

Coverage for sewer backup depends on your policy. Working with an insurance broker can help you better understand your policy to ensure you have the coverage you need.

FAQs About Tenant Insurance in Alberta

Tenant insurance is not mandatory in Alberta, but many landlords prefer it. It’s also a good idea to assure yourself that your valuable belongings are covered in the event of the unpredictable. Insurance policies come with different levels of coverage, depending on the extent and value of your belongings. Our Insurance Brokers can help you find the policy that is right for you or your family. 

What is tenant insurance?

Anyone who is renting an apartment, home, or condo can apply for tenant insurance. While home insurance protects the homeowner from damage to the building and property, tenant insurance helps protect the renter’s personal belongings in the event of environmental disaster, damage, or theft. This can include furniture, electronics, household items, clothing, and other valuable items in your home. Many tenant insurance policies also cover your personal items beyond the home, such as at the gym, office, or other venues. 

If I’m renting a place, do I need home insurance?

Tenants do not need home insurance. That responsibility lies with the owner of the building or the landlord. But tenant insurance is highly recommended. Tenant insurance covers the loss, damage, or theft of your personal belongings, furniture, and identity. 

What is not included in tenant insurance?

Tenant insurance only covers the belongings of you and your immediate family. If you have guests come to stay with you or you have a roommate, they will not be covered under your policy. If you have a roommate, they will need to get their own policy.

Frequently Asked Questions About Condo Insurance in Alberta

Condominium living is a popular choice for Albertans for the many perks, including access to fitness centres, swimming pools, entertainment spaces, no yard work, and no property maintenance. Whether you choose the high-rise lifestyle or a closed community of homes and townhouses, condo living has a lot to offer. But for many, the topic of condo insurance is confusing. Here are answers to our most frequently asked questions about condo insurance in Alberta. 

Do you need home insurance for a condo?

If you live in a condo, personal condo insurance is highly recommended. This type of insurance protects your belongings and the inside of your condo and can protect you in the event your condo corporation charges additional fees to cover damages to communal areas in your building. Your condo corporation should have commercial condo insurance to cover the outside of the building and communal spaces, but their coverage may not always be enough. Nor will their coverage protect your personal things. 

What is the difference between commercial condo insurance and personal condo insurance in Alberta?

Essentially, commercial condo insurance is a policy that the condo board or condo corporation purchases protect the building’s exterior, communal spaces, and building-wide systems. While your condo fees may go towards this insurance policy, it does not cover your personal possessions or the interior of your condo. 

Is personal condo insurance mandatory in Alberta?

No, it’s not mandatory, but it is highly recommended. In the event that your condo’s commercial insurance policy has insufficient coverage or high deductibles, your personal condo insurance can help protect you against unexpected fees. Personal condo insurance also protects your furniture, your electronic devices, your clothing, and other personal items in your unit. It also gives you fire, water damage, and theft protection for the things inside your apartment that are not covered by your condo’s commercial policy. Each condo will have a different policy, so it’s always a good idea to review what is covered to find the best policy to bridge the gap.

Expert Insurance Advice for New Albertans

If you’re moving from Ontario to Alberta, the last thing you want to do is spend hours researching insurance companies and policies. Here at Cornerstone Insurance Brokers Ltd., we’ve been serving Albertans for decades and work with over a dozen competitive insurance providers to offer a range of coverage options to suit all budgets. We’re here to serve you as your life changes to help you find the right insurance policies for your coverage needs. You can rely on our knowledgeable and friendly brokers to offer steady guidance in any crisis. Connect with us, and we’ll answer all your insurance questions.

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