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Home Insurance Company Inspection Scam

The suckers who respond to their insurance company calling to do a "Home Inspection," will end up regretting it. Insurance companies have ramped up their calls to policy holders who own older homes. A large part of this has to do with stealing millions more in fees and the huge amount of homes built prior to 1950 have become easy targets to massively increase their revenues.

HOW THE HOME INSPECTION SCAM WORKS:
You get a call one day from your agent saying, "We want to inform you that your home has come up for inspection, someone from _________ will be calling you to set up a time to come and inspect your property."

If you ask why, they'll just smile and say, "oh, your insurer just randomly selects houses for this." After you hang up, prepare for that sinking feeling in your gut... because Yes - something is amiss!

THE INSPECTION ITSELF:
If you get suckered into allowing an inspector into your home, you're in for a nightmare! The inspector, (who by the way will likely be some 20 year old twerp with no real knowledge of what a solid home actually is), will show up with a notepad and a silly grin. Also, the company that these, "appraiser's," tend to work for all seem to be completely, "off the radar," businesses.

One popular company used by Intact is called, "Underwriting Analysis." Try and find ANY information about this company online or in your local phone book! They Do Not exist! Remember, you're letting these people, (these strangers), into you home. Yet, their company doesn't even have an office, an address, or a company website! VERY, very strange indeed.

Not having tele-posts, or a sump pump, or a back up valve will be thrown at you first. Then, they'll be the issue of the dreaded, "Knob and Tube Wiring." Ahhh, yes get prepared for this one because this is their foundation of the home inspection SCAM.

KNOB-and-TUBE WIRING:
Let's begin by understanding that this wiring system is the BEST wiring system in the world. It runs pristine copper (pure copper - by the way) inside of rubberized and cloth wrapped individual separated wires (approx. 6" YES - SIX inches apart!). Wires travel along walls and through joists in heavy protective porcelain insulating tubes. And, they get supported along their length on nailed-down porcelain knob insulators. Where conductors enter a wiring device such as a lamp or switch, (or were pulled into a wall), they are protected by heavy flexible cloth insulating sleeves called looms.

This system is probably 50x safer than modern, "state-of-the-art wiring." The REAL reason why it wasn't used past 1950, is because of the high cost of installation compared with use of power cables. However, the insurance companies will all say that it isn't SAFE. Which is a complete and TOTAL LIE. It is safe, incredibly safe and therefore very expensive to install. This system (on a larger scale) is exactly how Manitoba Hydro runs all of it's wires into sub-stations across Manitoba. Also, keep in mind that knob and tube is still used today for many heavy duty electrical applications and all of the components are still in full production.

MODERN HOME WIRING (Made in China):
Now, consider that modern power cables are but millimeters apart inside of cheap "Made in China" plastic and the wire is NOT 100% pure copper. (Instead, it is a blend of metals that balance out to BARELY meet the building code). Although the new wiring does have a ground, only large power capacity electrical devices require any ground, (i.e., Dishwashers, Dryer Units, Washing Machines, Fridges, Stoves, etc.). The wiring for these devices would have more than likely been installed by an electrician many years ago. And, would completely bypass the knob & tube entirely.

Anyone that owns an older home likely already has a new 100 amp panel and plenty of up-dated wiring to link the larger capacity electrical devices. The changes began occurring in the 1960's & 70's, so seeing as how it is 2011... it is highly unlikely that any knob & tube wired homes are, "Un-Safe."

WHAT TO DO:
As soon as you get off the phone with the agent, start calling around to find out who else offers insurance for your older home, and who WON'T be harassing you about the age of your house.

In Manitoba the WORST offenders of this scam are Intact Insurance and CAA. Largely sold out of the M.I.G. insurance company. Intact commissions to brokers are one of the highest in the industry. Have you noticed all of the M.I.G. bus benches, and brochures being mailed out lately. How about that fancy new building on the lot of Ray & Jerry's Restaurant on Portage Ave.? They're getting all of that money from ripping off Manitobans.

WHO "RESPECTS" OLDER WINNIPEG HOMES?:
Wawanesa Insurance insures many of the older homes in Winnipeg. One broker we spoke to said that upwards of 80% of the older homes in Wolseley, St. Boniface and River Heights are insured by Wawanesa Insurance. Ask your broker about perhaps switching to them. As long as you have a newer 100 amp panel, they will respect your property. At the same time, if you're switching, then review your policy as well. If you were with a company like Intact, it's likely you were overpaying by 30% or more.

WHAT NOT TO DO:
Never let an inspector into your home - PERIOD. At worse, they will not renew your policy (after it runs it's term). If you make the mistake of letting somebody into your home, they'll likely demand that thousands of dollars of work be done. THIS IS the SCAM - by the way.

They might even use scare tactics, like telling you to do it all within 30 days. Just cancel your policy. Give them the boot and switch to another provider. Worse case, you'll have to pay one month more on your policy to break the contract. But, this is better than getting stuck with the alternative. Plus, a policy review is always good to do every few years anyway. And, try staying far away from the big brokers like M.I.G. They will generally never have your best interests at heart. They're after commissions - plain and simple. So, the bigger the policy the better!

REVIEWING THE SCAM... ONE LAST TIME:
See, the scam is simply this... obviously nobody will be able to re-wire their older home, and install all of the other upgrades. So, the insurance company will come to your rescue! They'll forgive the unsafe conditions... but, your premiums will rise by up to, (are you sitting down?), 3000%!

YIKES, what a complete farce. And, home owners who don't know any better are complying every day in Winnipeg. It's creating Millions in added revenues for companies like Intact. And, all of that money is flowing out of our City & province. Intact insurance is based in Toronto Ontario.

And, keep in mind, there is no regulatory body overseeing any of this because it is a giant revenue increasing puke of a scam for all involved. Everyone benefits; electricians, carpenters, insurance companies, agents, etc. Thus, zero regulation. I'd like to know how many politicians own stocks in insurance companies like Intact.

What a complete JOKE.
Kevin F.
Winnipeg Report

37 comments:

  1. ripped-off says:

    Fucking Insurance companies. Bunch of assholes. Fuck them.

  1. Eddie G. - Winnipeg says:

    I just received a, "Notice," from a - GET THIS - an (independent) Electrical Company, (let me be very clear, this is NOT from my Insurance Company), that I "Must remove the Knob & Tube in order to maintain my Home Insurance!"

    What in the FUCK is this SHIT?

    So are the fucking insurance companies & the electrical companies colluding on this issue to make a quick buck?

    We need to get some legislation in place to STOP all this shit! Show me a Fucking FIRE - one bloody fire... that is the direct result of Knob & Tube wiring you bunch of fucking money hungry corrupt assholes!

  1. Remy G. says:

    My friends in River Heights say that their mailboxes are getting hit with electrical companies saying they MUST remove their knob & tube before their insurance is revoked!

    REVOKED! What the... this is ridiculous. What's with the crisis all of a sudden with knob & tube?

    My Mom's house was built in 1909 and it's all knob & tube. Her house is totally safe, she has a new 100 amp panel.

    We need the govt. to step up to the plate on this and tell these Insurance Companies to go to hell and leave this knob & tube issue alone. All this obviously is comes down to a CASH grab.

  1. Les says:

    An insurance company should NOT be able to stop a homeowners insurance contract because of knob & tube.

    I was an electrician for 29 years and I've NEVER seen any knob & tube that would ever have been a danger to a home in any way, never mind a fire hazard.

    This is absolute corruption on some evil slimy level. Phone your local politician and get a legislated stop to this total stupidity.

  1. Larry H. says:

    Yup, just got hit with this last week from my insurance company. My house is 100 years old and mint. This is a TOTAL cash grab. TOTAL scam.

  1. Interesting and. It important information is really beneficial for us. Thanks

  1. M. G. Phelton says:

    As these insurance company scams increase and the people get more & more frustrated with these companies one of two things will start to happen...

    1). People will try and kill those in higher up positions at insurance companies.

    2). People will quit using insurance.

    Personally, I've quit buying insurance. I own my home outright (bought it in 1992 & paid it off in 2007) & I have NO insurance on it.

    Insurance is a TOTAL waste of time. If you file a claim, you deal with total morons 100% of the time.

    If your home burns, (like my friends home did), the fire dept. will be there in about 3 min. The damage is minimal. And, repairs are certainly less than the HASSLE of dealing with these crooks at Insurance companies.

    I suggest - pay off your home and have ZERO insurance. It's the BEST way to go!

  1. ratfacescum says:

    @M. G. Phelton,

    ABSOLUTELY & COMPLETELY AGREE TO NO INSURANCE...

    DID YOU HEAR ME...

    ZERO INSURANCE! ...None!

    Listen to me please, the turmoil from the current European crisis will come to the West here. The Euro dollar is finished and next it will be the UK. Pound and then the United States dollar. Look at the price of Gold in terms of paper fiat currency. It's telling the real story.

    Once the dollar crisis occurs in Canada as well, things like insurance will be shown as for what they really are... a complete scam!

    The only people left buying insurance when the dollar collapse hits Canada will be stupid idiots who want to; Burn their homes down, or garages down, or ruin their business, to collect the insurance money. Ya know, eventually, these crooked insurance agencies will be all broke and gone.

    Take my advice, cancel your insurance policies and save a fortune. Although, you may have to pay off your house first. I think that a mortgage contract will likely "require" you to carry insurance on the home.

    Check with your banker to find out more...

    I own my house, and have for years now.

    And, I have NO INSURANCE.

    If anything happens, I can fix it myself for less in the long-run.

    P.S. Look at it this way, I used to pay $325.00 a month on my home insurance. After I cancelled my insurance in 2003, I kept putting away $325.00 a month. But, instead of saving that money I invested it by purchasing antique collectable silver coins. And, I did that from 2003 until today! Back in 2003 silver was $6.00 an ounce... today it's $30.00. You do the math.

    Insurance IS A SCAM.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Did people have insurance 60 YEARS AGO? No... We don't need it. It's a SCAM.

    I agree with the above posters here... NO HOME INSURANCE!!! Save the money and invest it. If anything ever happens, (highly doubtful it ever will anyway), just do your own repairs.

    TRUE STORY:
    My neighbor's house had a small fire. The insurance company convinced him he needed to tear his house down and build a NEW one! WTF? It took the insurance Co. FIVE Fu#kin' years to rebuild!

    And now, he has a complete piece of crap of a house. It's up for sale. He was totally shafted.

    These companies are PIG-SCUM. I agree with the other poster here. In the future, people in these Insurance companies will be killed for what they're doing now. I'm sure of it. People are getting REALLY pissed off with insurance companies!

  1. Anonymous says:

    Wawanesa, also scams the elderly, especially if they live in an older house. They have no chance to collect insurance. An electrical fire...well, they should have replaced the wiring. A roof leak caused by ice, well, you should have re-roofed, even if the shingles are only five years old. They convinced one old lady, her roof started leaking in November, instead of Feb. when the leak started. So that was considered gradual deterioration. If the wind blows off shingles and the siding of your building, too bad, it wasn't done properly in the first place.

    This is one bad, bad outfit, outright evil to scam the elderly.

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  1. Letting strangers all by themselves would really get you in trouble because they just use the name of the home insurance to raid your house.

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