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Headquartered in suburban Philadelphia, MLA Claims is one of the nation's most accomplished property loss consulting firms. MLA Claims consists of public insurance adjusters and property loss consultants that work exclusively for you, the policyholder. Our specialist have experience with all types of insured properties, business interruption and extra expense losses.

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A Must Read Insurance Blog for Homeowners w/ Stucco

James Rode

A major problem lurking beneath the surface of many stucco homes is Water damage. If you Google “stucco homes water damage,” you will quickly learn that this is a pervasive issue with stucco homes constructed prior to 2009 or there about.  

Inasmuch, if you own a stucco home built before 2009, which has not had its exterior building envelope system remediated, repaired and/or replaced, it is wise to engage a certified specialist to inspect your home’s stucco system. The cost of the inspection should run between $500 - $2,000 depending on the size of your house, the services provided by the testing company, etc. 

Should a building envelope and/or stucco specialist confirm trapped Water and/or Water damage behind your stucco, the next unpleasant issue you will encounter is paying for the remediation costs and/or attempting to get reimbursed for remediation costs via homeowners’ insurance.

It should be noted that I am a licensed public insurance adjuster in Arizona, California, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, US Virgin Islands, Utah, Virginia, and West Virginia, and I am a first party property insurance consultant for policyholders. I am not an attorney. My firm, MLA Claims, LLC has successfully recovered ensuing Water damage claims that included compensation for a substantial portion of the costs associated with replacing stucco systems from several different homeowners’ insurance carriers.  Should you believe that you have a claim against a viable third party such as the developer, builder, general contractor, sub-contractor, and/or seller – please consult an attorney licensed in your state.

While construction errors such as faulty design or workmanship and/or inadequate building materials or workmanship are common causes for why rain-Water gets behind stucco, certain damage, depending on the specific language of your particular policy, may potentially be covered as an ensuing covered loss. If, for example, insulation is damaged by rain, and rain is a covered cause of loss, the affected insulation, if not otherwise excluded, would be a covered item of damage that the insurer may be liable to replace. Such a claim may also include costs associated with accessing the damaged insulation, potentially including the removal and replacement of the stucco envelope. Depending on the specific facts of your case as well as the terms of your homeowner’s insurance policy, there may be coverage for ensuing Water damage, caused by rain, to the applicable exterior sheathing and/or applicable insulation and/or applicable drywall (interior wallboard) and/or applicable wall coverings (paint / wallpaper), as well as access thereto.

Regrettably, not all insurance company adjusters properly apply the “ensuing covered loss” policy language to the facts of a particular claim, often in regard to stucco homes with Water damage, which can result in such claims being wrongfully denied.

Unfortunately, even when the homeowner’s insurance company is agreeing to pay for ensuing Water damage not otherwise excluded, the full extent of the Homeowner’s covered damage may not be known until full remediation commences and/or substantial access is provided to the sheathing and/or insulation and/or the portion of the drywall facing the exterior, etc. This puts homeowners in a difficult spot in that they are faced with the financial hardship of executing a substantial remediation contract without the benefit of knowing if or how much of the incurred costs will be reimbursed by their homeowner’s insurance company.   

Should you have any questions or concerns regarding this blog including the specifics of your situation, please feel free to contact me, Bob Landow, via e-mail at landow@mlaclaims.com.