Your partner in real estate training since 1974
RealEstateSchoolWire - Rockwell Institute's Official Blog

Don't get Hosed: Avoiding Water Leaks

Several times a year, my home insurer (Pemco) sends out a newsletter featuring short interesting articles on various safety/money-saving topics related to home and auto insurance. I'm one of those guys who actually reads stuff like that. The 2012 winter issue discusses a poll in which Pemco asked people to guess at the number one cause of homeowner claims.

What do you think accounts for the most claims each year? (Only 14% of the poll respondents guessed right.)

  1. Break-ins
  2. Fires
  3. Windstorms
  4. Water leaks

The answer may surprise you: it's the last item in the list, water leaks.

Water Damage As Pemco said, "Plumbing woes—spurting washing machine hoses, crumbling grout and failed caulk around sinks and tubs, leaking dishwashers, and burst ice-maker connections—spark more claims than anything else."

We here at Rockwell can attest to the danger. A few years ago, there was some flooding on our premises thanks to a faulty connection on a coffee vending machine water line!

Routine maintenance checks can help prevent time-consuming and expensive disasters. Below are Pemco's recommendations. We think this list is a great reminder. And if you send out newsletters to cients and customers, you might want to consider including a helpful list like this:

  1. Check washing machine hoses for cracks and leaks. If the hose is more than five years old, replace it with a quality high-pressure, durable-mesh hose (about $10).
  2. Check the floor around your water heater for signs of leaks. If it's more than five years old, hire a qualified technician for periodic inspections.
  3. Check refrigerator and dishwasher lines for leaks and crimps. When you pull out the refrigerator to clean, don't overextend or crimp the ice-maker line. After moving your refrigerator, shine a flashlight under it the next day to make sure no leaks have sprung.
  4. In freezing weather, detach garden hoses and cover outdoor faucets (hose bibs) with insulating hoods, which cost about $2.

Remember, Rockwell Institute is always happy to answer your real estate education questions!