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Optional service-line protection plans sent to Rapid City homeowners are not a scam

Published: Sep. 9, 2021 at 1:11 PM MDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - Some Rapid City residents will receive letters this week about an optional service-line protection plan being offered to homeowners. City officials would like recipients of these letter to know that they are legitimate and not a scam.

The letters, which have been sent by Service Line Warranties of America (SLWA) - have the endorsement of the City, and the protection plan offered is not a scam. The letters provide information on protection plans offering coverage for interior plumbing and drainage systems, exterior sewer/septic lines and exterior water service lines.

With its membership in the National League of Cities, Rapid City is able to offer the service line protection plans which are administered by SLWA, a subsidiary of HomeServe.

Twice a year, the City authorizes correspondence with Rapid City residents to remind them of the available service line protection. City residents can expect to receive an introductory letter about the protection plan and then a reminder correspondence a few weeks later. The City has authorized SLWA/HomeServe to utilize the City’s name and logo on all marketing and mailing materials, including correspondence.

To date, approximately 1,360 Rapid City homeowners have enrolled in protection plans, for a total of more than 2,600 policies. Since the program’s inception, SLWA has spent $254,350 locally for repairs.

“Homeowners are often surprised to learn they are responsible for service line repairs, which can be an unexpected and costly expense,” said City Public Works Director Dale Tech. “Repairs to service lines are the homeowners responsibility, all the way to where their line connects to the main. This sometimes includes a portion that runs under the street. These repairs may or may not be covered by basic homeowners insurance or by the City.”

The protection plan offers up to $8,500 per service call for covered water service line repairs and covered sewer/septic line repairs. The letter sent out this week explains the coverage, provides examples of the plan’s coverage, answers to important questions, an acceptance form and contact information to SLWA/HomeServe, which will work with local contractors for repairs.

“These types of repairs can cost several thousands of dollars,” Tech said. “These plans provide an affordable option to offset the expense for repairs. The company works with local, licensed contractors to complete repairs. The City incurs no expense related to this program. The plans are voluntary and homeowners can select the coverage that is right for their circumstances.”

Plans do not cover pre-existing problems. There is a 30-day waiting period before coverage begins, after acceptance by HomeServe.

SLWA/HomeServe processes claims 24-hours a day, through a toll-free hotline. SLWA/Homeserve will work with homeowners to quickly evaluate and complete repairs. There are no service fees or deductibles and Home Serve, not the City, manages the billing and claims process.

Tech says the City’s role as a partner in the program is to grant SLWA/HomeServe the right to offer and market optional service line warranties to residential single dwelling property owners within city limits.

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