Does homeowners ins cover water damage from a burst pipe if the owners have recently moved out of the home but maintain heat? The move out being to ready the home for sale.

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jan 12, 2018

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Insurance Question from Brooklyn, CT

Asked on 01/12/2018

Does homeowners ins cover water damage from a burst pipe if the owners have recently moved out of the home but maintain heat? The move out being to ready the home for sale. Homeowners moved in with adult child near the home in question. The home was being readied for sale - carpet taken out to be replaced after walls were painted.Most furniture and boxes stored in garage below the main house.Heat was maintained at 52 degrees.Due to the long stretch of below zero temperatures, a pipe burst and there was water damage.

Answer given on January 14, 2018

If your home was vacant and a burst pipe occurred, there are some questions to be answered.  You do indicate the heat was maintained while vacant. This is good.  You did not indicate how long the home was vacant.  Most insurance companies limit vacancy at 30 days, some at 60 days.   However, if there was furniture in the home, it is then considered unoccupied and not vacant.  The fact the furniture was stored in the garage may not help your cause, but you can file a claim and see what happens. 

If the insurance company does accept there is coverage for the burst pipe, the insurance company will not pay for the pipe. It will pay for damages caused by the burst pipe, including damage to the floor, walls and other things.

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