By Liz Collin

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A little-known repair ordinance put a Minneapolis woman on the hook for thousands of dollars. But, WCCO-TV’s story caught the attention of a company willing to help.

We first told you about the leaking water line in south Minneapolis last month. We went back and found a warranty policy that could offer some kind of protection for your own pocketbook.

A slow leak has been replaced by loud street work along 20th Avenue South. It is a water line repair that Itzel Perez Dominguez at first had no choice but to pay to fix.

“When that happened I thought that was the city’s infrastructure and that was the city’s responsibility,” Perez Dominguez said.

An ordinance puts homeowners on the hook in Minneapolis for water and sewer line repairs. In her case for $5,800.

(credit: CBS)

But, our story caught the attention of HomeServe USA states away. The company offers warranties to homeowners, covering everything from water to electrical to cooling repairs.

“They ask me questions about what happened and get my story, and after that they said that they were going to help me pay for it,” Perez Dominguez said. “And I couldn’t believe it!”

Summer Minger travels the country for HomeServe USA profiling stories like Perez Dominguez’s, shining a light on aging infrastructure — and the price tag that’s attached.

“Sixty percent of homeowners either don’t know they’re responsible for it, or believe that their homeowners insurance will pay for it, and then they find out neither of these things are true,” Minger said.

Perez Dominguez tried to get the attention of lawyers and council members with no luck. Still, she is hoping this story helps the city warn others of potential problems they cannot see.

“I’m just asking for more information for those who buy houses or those who have houses know and prepare,” she said.

WCCO checked and HomeServe USA already works in 24 cities in Minnesota. Homeowners can pay about $5 a month for water service line coverage. So far, Minneapolis is not of those cities.

Liz Collin

  1. Mark Kulda says:

    It is nice that the HomeServe USA company is doing good public relations and paying for this service, however before consumers should rush out to buy this coverage, it is important to realize just how rare what happened to Ms. Dominguez. You may choose to buy this coverage and because claims are so very rare, pay a lot and never have a claim. If your peace of mind is worth $5 a month, then certainly consider it. But just based on the very few claims that ever get made for this coverage, it may not be worth it.