Tuesday, January 26, 2010

What is Water Back Up & Sump Pump Overflow?

Do you know what Water Back Up & Sump Pump Overflow coverage is and how it can help you? We get lots of questions about this coverage on a homeowners policy. Many people either have never heard of it, don’t know it exists, or don’t know how it would apply to them & their situation.

When we get to this coverage in the quote or policy for a customer, the conversation usually goes something like this…

Us: “And we gave you water back up & sump overflow coverage up to $5,000 on your policy.”

Customer A: “Water what? What is that? What does that mean? How much is it costing me?”

Us: “Well, water back up & Sump overflow is if your pipes or sewers back up into your house & overflow into the house. This is different from flood insurance, and your homeowners insurance policy typically does not automatically cover this for you in your home. In the event that your pipes back up into your house, which I hope that they never do, because believe me this is messy, this additional coverage would help to cover the cost of this.”

Customer "A" now ponders a few factors in this coverage and they go one of three ways –
1.) They ask how much it costs, with which we reply it ranges from company to
company. Some automatically include this with certain other coverages, while
other companies offer this at an additional price. After the thought of
cleaning up sewer or toilet water in their house on their own, they figure
the benefits outweigh the cost.
2.) They tell me no thanks because that never happens to them or they don’t
think it will.
3.) They ask me if they can go higher than $5000 for coverage in which case,
many companies do offer more coverage for this specifically.

Many people have not heard of this coverage or do not know specifically what this coverage does for someone in a real life scenario. Well, if you have had sewer pipes back up into your house, or overflow causing a gross & disgusting mess, it only takes you once to realize the importance of this, and that you probably don’t want to go through that again if you can avoid it.

My question for you would be, knowing what this coverage covers you for and knowing that without it, even though this is water damage there is no coverage unless you have this specific addition to your policy, which would you choose?

My other comment to you would be to look at your homeowners, renters, or condo owner’s policy and if you don’t have this coverage and think it would be useful to you with what you know now, please talk to your agent or your insurance carrier to find out how to add this coverage onto your policy. You can add this on for a few bucks a month. Trust me, its better than cleaning up 3 inches of messy water in your house.