Increase in home construction costs could impact insurance coverage

Rising prices could hit you hard in the event of a disaster. Skyrocketing home values ​​and construction costs are leaving coverage gaps for some homeowners.

This largely varies by policy – most are written in terms of what is being replaced rather than the current cost of materials. But at least one disaster cleanup professional finds that some incidents can have limits that aren’t set at today’s high prices.

What happened in the Parsons’ house could happen anywhere.

“When I got out of bed, I felt like I was wet on the floor,” Josh Parsons said.

Josh Parsons made the discovery.

“I came running in here, and there was probably about an inch, an inch and a half of standing water,” he said.

One toilet was leaking all over the floor and bottom.

“I went to put things in the garage, and when I opened the door, it sounded like a light river in our garage,” Jeramie Parsons said.

Three levels were affected when water came in through rafters and behind walls and cabinets.

“And then all the flooring has to be removed because we’ve trapped the moisture underneath,” said Ryan Marriott, owner of Floodsmen Disaster Cleanup.

Marriott said rising values ​​make it difficult to clean up some of these types of events.

“We find that leaves a gap in the service of some of our customers in their insurance,” he said.

And in the Parsons’ case, Josh said “it was only $10,000, and that’s what I could go up to.”

Josh said their insurance company originally tried to cover it as sewage backup. Marriott said they were able to help them get it covered under another part of their policy, but that’s an example of why it pays to know your insurance agent. .

“It makes a really big difference knowing you’re covered and getting it ready for a bond,” Marriott said.

“The sleight of hand that we had with him is, it’s an eye opener, and it kind of makes you regret it,” Jeramie said. “Hindsight is 20/20, isn’t it?”

KSL verified with Utah Department of Insurance on this and they said it’s always a good idea to have a checkup with your insurance agent every two years. They also recommended documenting any repair work done on your home with photos, in case a dispute with coverage arises in the future.


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Justin D. O'Neill