Should You File a Claim?

Should You File a Claim?
  When you are flooded, read the fine print of your insurance plan.
  By Pat Mertz Esswein, kiplinger.com

Water damage accounted for about one-fifth of all insurance claims in 2007, says the Insurance Information Institute, with an average amount of $5,531. But think twice before submitting a water-related claim, which insurers say may reflect poor home maintenance and better odds that you’ll eventually file even bigger claims for mold-related expenses.Depending on your insurer, filing two water-related claims within a five-year period could earn you a premium hike at renewal time or get you dropped altogether. It could also make it harder to find a new policy because all insurers consult a giant database called the Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange, or CLUE, which records all claims against a property over a seven-year period. It might be cheaper to write a check from your emergency fund or take a small loan.Some water claims aren’t covered, anyway. Homeowners and renters insurance policies typically cover damage from water that comes from the top down, such as rainfall, a burst pipe or an ice dam. But most policies don’t cover rising water from any source, including a drain or sewer backup. A rider to cover a sewer backup will cost about $50 annually. If a water problem is covered, your insurer will probably pay for you to hire a restoration company.

If you’re in an area at risk for flooding, you may need flood insurance. The average policy costs $540 a year, according to the federal government’s National Flood Insurance Program.

Reprinted with permission. All Contents ©2011 The Kiplinger Washington Editors. www.kiplinger.com.

 

Harrisburg PA Real Estate Expert

Ken Huebsch is your premier real estate agent in the Greater Harrisburg area.  I am a specialist in Harrisburg real estate  as well as the communities of Palmyra, Hershey, and Hummelstown.  My wife Leslye and I have a combined 40 plus years experience serving our clients -We KNOW Harrisburg. When you plan to buy or sell Harrisburg area real estate, allow us to work for you.  We are dedicated professionals and are here for your success.  For more information on how we can best serve your real estate needs, please complete our online contact form or give us a call.  Also, check out what our fabulous clients have to say about us on our testimonials page!

Cell: 717 514-1793
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