What is Utility Line Coverage?
First off, residential utility lines are the water pipes, sewer lines, electricity lines, gas lines, telephone lines or fiber optic cables, cables, data lines, and other similar lines that service your home. Some utility lines may be buried, and some might not be, as well as some lines may be OWNED by the service provider or utility company and some MAY NOT.
Utility line coverage comes into play in those situations where the homeowner is responsible for the service/utility lines from the street or “common area” to the home. The most common concern for insuring for utility lines is with the sewer lines. Always buried and often the responsibility of the homeowner to maintain, sewer lines can be very expensive to repair or replace should they fail. We often had customers call us about sewer lines that become blocked or collapsed and needed to be replaced. There is a lot of trauma from having landscaping destroyed by heavy machinery topped off with a bill of $10,000 or more for repairs.
How Utility Line Coverage Works
In recent years insurance companies have begun to offer coverage for these lines when once they were excluded from most homeowner policies. This coverage is still excluded, however as an endorsement to the policy, insurance companies will cover the expense to repair or replace many of the lines servicing the home. Coverage extends to situations where wear and tear, rust or corrosion, root invasion, vermin, freezing and even heavy equipment may be the cause of the damage. An example of coverage limitations might be septic systems. Septic systems may not be covered but the plumbing systems to the tank are.
It’s important to know the coverage limits, deductibles and types of lines covered as this may vary from company to company. Be certain to discuss this option with your agent or read your policy very carefully.