Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- A letter from HomeServe USA warned Alan Balcom that part of the water line from his home to the street is not covered by insurance.
"I was always under the impression that if there is a problem with the water pipes, that the town takes care of them,” said Balcom.
Offers for supplemental coverage have arrived in many mailboxes across Central New York this week and the Better Business Bureaus says they should be considered with caution.
"You really have to measure whether or not you would ever be in a situation that you would need this type of coverage and then make sure that you look at all of the fine print. There are a lot of exclusions and it just might not be worth the investment,” said Peggy Penders, with the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
HomeServe has closed 185 complaints with the Better Business Bureau in the past three years, 88 were closed in the past 12 months. Most of the complaints involved issues with advertising, billing, or warranty services. All of those BBB complaints were resolved.
"We would agree that it is important for homeowners to read carefully the offers that we provide and also look over the terms and conditions to make sure that this is an offer that is right for them. It is an optional service,” said HomeServe USA Senior Vice President, Myles Meehan.
HomeServe charges roughly $65 a year for the water line coverage. Balcom has never had problems with that short portion of his water line and he's willing to take the risk that he won't need more insurance.
“You could go ten years and never need it. That’s $600 in my pocket,” Balcom said.
HomeServe USA is based out of Stamford, Connecticut. While dozens of complaints with the BBB appear to have been resolved, keep in mind: They contract out service jobs. So there isn’t a local office to visit if you do have a problem.