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Service line warranties available to Berwyn property owners

Published: Wednesday, March 19, 2014 3:47 p.m. CDT

BERWYN – For the second year, Berwyn is offering homeowners a way to protect themselves from costly repairs associated with sewer or water lines.

The city, with Service Line Warranties of America is offering residents voluntary warranty protection for sewer line failures.

The National League of Cities Service Line Warranty program offers protection against normal wear and tear not covered under most traditional homeowners policies. Service Line Warranties of America will repair the lines if they break, leak or clog, using local, licensed contractors familiar with local code who can ensure repairs are done quickly.

This program provides up to $4,000 in coverage, with an additional allowance for public street or sidewalk cutting at a cost of $7.25 per month, or $82 a year.

The program has no annual or lifetime limits, service fees or deductibles.

Assistant City Administrator Evan Summers said the city began researching the effectiveness of a warranty plan with surrounding communities that already had a plan in place when it became apparent that one may be needed.

“As our infrastructure ages here in Berwyn, we’ve had families come in with sewer line issues and we were concerned with the cost associated with replacing the sewer line,” he said. “We understand that a lot of families are still struggling so we found this cost-effective solution to solve these problems.”

Summers said not all homeowners policies cover problems with sewer or water lines. Property owners are encouraged to first consult with their insurance agents to determine if and how much coverage their homeowner’s insurance provides.

“Some people are unaware they are responsible for the sewer line connection to their residence,” he said. “The city is only responsible for the main system.”

Repairs paid by the property owner can be as high as $5,000, and in some cases, more, Summers said.

Meanwhile, as of the end of February, the city has had 1,271 homeowners sign up for the External Sewer Line Warranty and 667 signed up for the External Water Line Warranty.

This program is offered at no cost to the city and no public funds are used to promote or administer the program.

For questions or to enroll, contact Service Line Warranties of America at 866-922-9006 or www.SLWofA.com.

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