As nation debates infrastructure investment, homeowners should look at their own responsibilities

February 12, 2018
by HomeServe

When you hear the word “infrastructure,” you usually think about the basic structures that the government or private industry provides and maintains for all of us to use like highways and train tracks, bridges and tunnels, and water and sewer systems. That definition is certainly in line with what President Trump is pitching with his proposed $1.5 trillion investment plan for infrastructure in our country. But did you know that some infrastructure is the responsibility of homeowners and that the federal, state or local investment the president talks about will do nothing to help you when problems arise on your property?

The pipes that connect your house to a utility or municipality’s main sewer and water lines are your responsibility and, unfortunately, breaks are more common than most realize. A recent study in the Journal of the American Water Works Association found that water service line failures are most common in 30- to 60-year-old homes. The unfortunate reality of that fact is made evident when you consider that the median age of homes in the U.S. is already 42 years old. The vulnerability of these pipes is further evidenced by the fact that over the last 12 months, HomeServe repaired or replaced a combined 66,000 water and sewer lines on private property for its customers.  In addition, the extreme cold this winter exposed just how many water lines are vulnerable. In fact, HomeServe completed a record number of repairs between Dec. 25, 2017 and Jan. 7, 2018, when temperatures dropped to record lows across a large part of the U.S.

HomeServe is proud to serve over 3 million households, providing homeowners with peace-of-mind plans like roadside assistance for your home. The low-cost plans help protect homeowners from expensive plumbing, electrical, heating or cooling repairs that are typically not covered by homeowner’s insurance, a utility or the city. HomeServe’s solutions also benefit municipalities and utilities by proactively educating homeowners about their responsibility when it comes to repairing and replacing water, sewer and other lines on their property.

While the national infrastructure conversation will continue to focus on funding for large scale projects, it is prudent financial planning to also consider how old and vulnerable the pipes are leading into your own home and how you can best protect against an unexpected repair bill when they fail.