If you are a homeowner you might want to be aware that filing an insurance claim for damage to your home could one day impact your ability to sell your property.
Insurance claims on homes now may be submitted to a 10-year old database called the Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange Property Database (CLUE). Information on past claims is available for insurers who are looking to write policy on homes. Information on a CLUE Report might give an insurer reason to not issue a policy on a home or to insure it at a higher rate.
Imagine your home suffers water damage from a broken pipe and you file an insurance claim and have your home repaired. You may not have to disclose repaired damage to a future homebuyer but it more than likely will show up when that buyer's insurance company runs a CLUE Report.
Even if the insurance company is fine with information from the report, you may have an issue with a homebuyer who suddenly is nervous that the home they are buying had previous damage.
Claims that raise red flags to insurance companies are those from water damage due to issues relating to mold.
Reporting a claim is voluntary for insurance companies but if you are selling a home and have made a claim within the past five years it might be a good idea to find out what is on your CLUE Report. Homeowners can access a free CLUE Report on their home by going to www.choicetrust.com.
If you are a buyer it also might be a good idea to ask the home seller for a CLUE Report on the home. For Realtors, buyers and sellers looking at CLUE Reports up front will only save a lot of time and aggravation.
Buyers also need to be concerned about CLUE Reports because they show claims that an individual has made on previous homes. If you have made several claims and those show up on a CLUE Report you may not be able to obtain insurance or it may cost you more.
Homeowners might want to think twice before they make future claims for "trivial" items. Maybe the cost of fixing the damage yourself might be cheaper than calling your insurance company.