Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Water Back-up of Sewers and Drains

As spring rolls in to an already saturated Iowa, make sure you know your risk for Water Back-up of Drains.

Water Back-up of Sewers and Drains is an optional endorsement on a standard home insurance policy that provides coverage in the event of water or sewage backing up through the drains or in the event of sump pump failure.  Neither of which are covered perils on a standard home insurance policy.

Typically, the cost for this coverage ranges between $40-$80 per year per $5,000 in coverage and some companies require that a sump pump be present in order to secure this type of coverage.  Also, many companies will not allow a current client to add the coverage during the term of the policy.  In these cases, it can be added at the time of renewal.  Other companies will have a 30 day waiting period before the coverage takes effect after the endorsement is issued.

The coverage provided is broad in nature and will cover contents, structural damage, and clean up.  Some companies have different deductibles for this type of coverage from the Named Perils deductible that shows on the Declaration page of your Home Insurance Policy.  There are some companies, however, that maintain the same deductible across the board.  Contact your Absolute Agent for further coverage questions and deductible options if you already have the endorsement in place.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Home Claims: How to Keep An Inventory

Keep an inventory of your belongings and updating it periodically is an important aspect to ensuring that the insurance company and properly compensate you for the loss of those belongings at the correct replacement cost.

Some individuals do so with simply keeping a written log of such in a safety deposit box in a bank or at a trusted residence outside their home.  Others will do about the same with photos and video.  These are all great examples of how to protect yourself from a low ball bid from an Insurance Adjuster, or to keep the supplemental checks to a minimum.

Now, as people and society is becoming increasingly paperless, there is a new way to create and save a household inventory.  At, individuals can keep a running log of their belongings and can be stored on your home computer or laptop.

This is a very helpful website that not only can help you in the creation of the inventory (there is a short video you may watch that shows the proper steps), the site can actually store the inventory in a secured "Vault".  This software makes creating a home inventory fun and easy.  Once you have completed your inventory, it is easy to keep your information up-to-date.

However it gets done, it is very important to keep and maintain a household inventory.  While insurance companies usually don't have any problems with that which is "usual and customary" additional items and rather unusual items may be disputed.  As a small caution to this, even though you may have an inventory on all your jewelry, guns, and artwork, that does not necessarily mean that you have adequate coverage.  Those items will still need to be scheduled separately to ensure that they are covered to the full replacement cost.