Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Insurance Rant

One thing I've come to understand over the years is that the criteria used to determine insurance pricing defies logic. I started shopping around recently due a larger than expected increase in our car insurance. (I was told it was due simply to, "the cost of doing business in Virginia.") Because of the multi-policy discount involved I've had to shop for a new homeowners policy as well. Therein lies the problem.

Back in March 2011 at our old house we'd had a wastewater pipe come apart at a joint underneath the house dumping wastewater and sewage in the crawlspace. We filed an insurance claim to get the mess cleaned up. It was confined to the vapor barrier so that was replaced along with removal of the water and waste and spraying an anti-microbial solution to kill any bacteria. The total payout after my deductible was a little over $1,200. Despite there being no actual water damage (or even touching any of the wood underneath the house) the claim was classified as such. Turns out this is the crappy gift of underpants and socks that keeps on giving year after year.

A couple times between then and selling that house I tried shopping around to get a better rate on my homeowners insurance. In Virginia however (and Rhode Island apparently) most insurance companies refuse to write policies if there's been a water damage claim in the previous five years. This I thought was stupid enough given that there was no actual water damage but I accepted it and moved on.

Fast forward to this week as I start looking for new insurance. Several times I've asked for quotes from companies only to be told they won't a policy due to the aforementioned claim in the previous five years. This makes absolutely no sense to me with it being a completely different house. It'd almost make more sense if it affected the new owners of the old house instead.

As it is it looks like I'll be switching our car insurance and then come next March once the five years is up move the homeowners policy. Even with the loss of the multi-policy discount it's still cheaper. Unless I can reach someone within the company I plan to go with that is willing or able to apply a little more logic to it and write the policy before then.

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