I absolutely LOVE water! I don’t care if it’s the ocean, a lake, the pool or a hose, give me a lawn chair and I’m there! Water is an essential part of life. It’s necessary to our bodies, our planet is over 70% water and we need it in order to sustain plant life.
That being said, the one place we don’t want water overflowing unsupervised is in our homes! As beautiful as the waves of the ocean can be, the burst of your kitchen sink pipe cascading down your custom kitchen cabinets turns pure calm water into a raging nightmare real quick! As a homeowner, you cannot prevent or foresee every accident that may occur, but you can make sure you have adequate coverage in place to assist in the repair and recovery of your property. When purchasing homeowners insurance, there are coverages that come standard with your policy and then there are endorsements that can be added to enhance the basics. From increasing the amount of jewelry coverage, firearms or liability, you can also add a water backup and sump overflow endorsement. Please hear me when I say this, water backup is NOT flood coverage. I repeat, it is NOT flood coverage! If you desire coverage for flood, that requires a whole separate policy with a different set of parameters.
Water backup provides coverage due to your property being damaged due to waterborne material or sewage that has backed up through your sewer or drain. It can also provide coverage due to sump pump failure. Let’s break it down a little. What can cause these backups?
- Blockage of a city sanitary main
- Aging sewer system
- Tree roots
- Blocked gutter systems
These are just a few examples. One of the most important things to remember is that water backup and sump pump overflow can happen to anyone regardless of the age of your home or any updates you may have made. When updating your home, including a sump pump is something you should consider as well as adding a backup that is battery or generator operated. Here are a few other things to store away in that memory bank:
- This coverage is NOT automatic. As mentioned above, you need to have it added on in addition to your standard homeowner’s policy.
- Water backup does have monetary limits, and they come in increments of $5000. Talk with your agent or account manager to see what limits work best for you. Do you have a fully furnished basement with hard to replace items? Higher limits will be in your favor.
- Adding this endorsement is cost efficient! This coverage can typically be added to your policy, depending on your limits, for about $50 per $5000 increment.
- Don’t fill your drains and pipes with materials that are hard to break down such as cooking oil, grease, feminine products, paper towels, toothbrushes, crayons etc.
I encourage you to double check your homeowner’s policy to see if you have this coverage. And if you don’t or need help, give us a call! As corny as it sounds, better to be safe than sorry! I’d rather spend my money, minus my deductible of course, on a sunny beach with my toes in the water than in sewage.