Reason #1: It’s not included in a standard homeowners insurance policy.
Not sure if your home insurance policy includes water backup coverage? Then it’s time to give our office a call and speak to your account manager.

Water backup coverage is an optional endorsement that must be added onto a standard homeowners, condo or renters insurance policy. Without the endorsement, you would be stuck paying for the cost of cleanup or damages caused by the failure of sump pump or back-up of sewers or drains.

Reason #2: It’s fairly inexpensive.
The average cost of water backup and sewer coverage is $50 to $250 annually, depending on the limits you select.

Different limits are available to match people’s different needs. For example, think about what’s in your basement—it’s an area that’s more likely to flood during a water backup. Is it partially or fully finished? Is your basement a storage area for expensive or hard-to-replace items?  Work with your account manager to choose a limit that matches your unique coverage needs.

Reason #3: Water backups can happen to anyone.
There are a lot of misconceptions about who is more or less likely to experience a water backup situation. And the truth is it doesn’t matter if you live on top of a hill, if you don’t have a basement or if your home has never had a water backup issue before. Everyone has the potential to experience this type of loss.

Reason #4: It qualifies you for Loss of Use coverage if your home is uninhabitable.
In most cases, a sump pump failure or the back-up of sewers or drains would not make your home uninhabitable. But in the rare case that it does make your home uninhabitable, having water backup coverage would qualify you for Loss of Use coverage.

Loss of Use covers additional living expenses.  So if a water backup makes your home uninhabitable and requires a hotel stay for a couple of days, your claim adjuster may approve you for Loss of Use coverage.

Tips for avoiding water backups:

  • Don’t pour cooking oil or grease down your drains.
  • Only flush bathroom tissue in your toilets.
  • Consider replacing your line with plastic pipe to prevent tree roots from entering it.
  • Consult a sump pump professional, typically a plumber, to check your sump pump regularly and look for any pre-existing drainage system issues.
  • Install a backwater prevention valve to prevent sewer backups—in fact, most new homes are built with this already installed.
  • Buy a battery backup to keep your sump pump running when the power goes out or buy a water-powered backup sump pump.

Credit: The Grange Guide to Insurance