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  • oh jesus. Are those condos or rentals? I hate to even think what kind of assessment the building would need after something like this. Is it covered by insurance?
    Related interesting question for popville: we had pretty substantial damage from frozen pipes in our house in January (replace wood floors, extensive drying, etc.). Even though it cost close to 10k, a lot of people told us not to make an insurance claim because we could lose insurance, increase our rates, or deter future buyers. Any experience with this? What should we do? Isn’t this why insurance exists? If you have insurance but loose it if you use it isn’t that just a scam?
    I’m also curious how this would work for a condo. Does the building as a whole have insurance? Are there similar incentives? I have to imagine costs for a leak like the one above can easily top 150-200k.

    • WHAT IN THE WORLD?! I have never heard that about insurance and agree this is why insurance exists! I am no expert, but I think you should most definitely file a claim. My parents had a fire in the garage like 20ish years ago and they definitely filed a claim. They redid the garage and everything. They were with State Farm then and have been with them for 30+ years.

    • HaileUnlikely

      There is a kernel of a point there, but I think most people would file a claim. Consider how much your deductible is, figure out how much you would actually get if you file a claim, and consider carefully whether or not it is worth it. If you don’t have a history of claims, you should not lose your insurance, but your rates may go up (it’s a good bet they will, but by how much I don’t have a clue), and having this on the record could theoretically deter future buyers (though realistically in DC I would not worry about that). I have a $5000 deductible. Thus, if the cost of my repairs was like $6000, it would be insane for me to file a claim. At $10K, I’d have to think long and hard about it. But really, having many tens of thousands of dollars of damage, or having your house burn to the ground, or having somebody sustain an injury on your property and sue you, is really what insurance is for.

    • Somewhat related, any recommendations for homeowner’s insurance in DC? We had our rate raised after filing a claim so would like to shop around. (If I had known they would increase it by so much it wouldn’t have been worth making the claim.)

      • I have State Farm. The only thing I can vouch for on the homeowner’s policy is that they are good at accepting my money, because I’ve never made a claim. They were very nice on an auto claim I made though. I pay about $700 a year for $2000 deductible.

      • HaileUnlikely

        I use InsuranceFirst, which is an affiliate of Erie Insurance. My rate with them is 10-20% lower than quotes I got from StateFarm, LibertyMutual, and Travelers. I have never actually filed a claim, so I can’t comment on how they are on that front.

      • I can strongly recommend Amica. We had to file a substantial renter’s insurance claim a while back, and our premium did not increase, at least not noticeably. We have stayed loyal to them now that we have homeowner’s insurance. Seems to be a pretty good company. They even give policyholders a dividend back at the end of the year.

    • My former condo lost our insurance after we had 3 similar pipe bursts. We finally convinced them to reinstate, but they made us do an engineering study as to why our pipes were bursting and do everything the study said. Turns out it was a structural issue with how the condo was built. They also jacked up the rate 300%. But that was after we had three pipes burst.

    • My condo had issues with this last year and after weighing our options with insurance we decided to pay for it out of our HOA account. We just had to reinsulate an area with exposed pipes and redo the drywall around it but decided we’d save the insurance claim for something really big (like if something were to happen with the roof… or if there was something that caused more damage than what happened with the pipes last year)

  • This was all thepush I needed to finally get that renters insurance I’ve been putting off. thanks POP!

  • That’s the water main on the ground floor, with the stairs going down to the garage, and the hallway passing between a parking lot and the exit to Giant. Nothing would have been destroyed with the water.

  • As a condo Board president, this is what nightmares are made of.

  • Not to be too pedantic, but isn’t the term “water main” usually used to describe the large pipes that run under a street, not a smaller pipe like this within a building?

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