Thursday, February 7, 2013

A word about.... Mine subsidence - UPDATED

Recently our State Farm agent has been calling and e-mailing incessantly wanting us to sign a "mine subsidence" waiver of insurance on our home- owners insurance policy. Apparently, the standard residential homeowners policy does not include coverage for damage due to mine subsidence. So after the latest call, (following my failure to act and return the document), I started wondering if I should be putting more thought into this "waiver". I posted a question on our Realtor Facebook Page, asking fellow Peoria Area agents to comment if they had more than my mediocre knowledge of the subject. Jason Catton of RE/MAX Acclaimed was kind enough to offer this link to the Illinois State Geological Survey.

It's a map from the Illinois State Geological Survey showing a legend of old mine activity. You can type in a complete property address and it will overlay a color-coded map of old coal mines over the subject area. By executing these steps, you can see if there may be an old coal mine underneath your home. It's quite fascinating, and if you drag the map around and look at the Charter Oak area, as well as the Bartonville and South Peoria area, you'll see that it would at least appear, you might want to consider purchasing that Mine Subsidence addendum. Generally speaking, according to the Geological records, it appears that most of Peoria County North of War Memorial Drive is in the clear.

The following comment appeared when the forums linked to this blog article:

The Illinois Mine Subsidence Act was passed in 1979, and mandated that property insurers offer coverage for the peril of mine subsidence. There are 34 counties where coverage is automatically rolled onto policies, however the insured has the option to waive coverage in writing. For a list of those counties, ask your insurance agent, or see the website cited below. In the remaining counties, coverage can be added to the policy by request. Through the same legislation, the Illinois Mine Subsidence Insurance Fund was created to provide reinsurance for companies who pay mine subsidence losses. Although created by the state, the Fund is not a state agency. When an insured suspects their property has been damaged by mine subsidence, they should notify their primary insurer, who will file the claim with the Fund. For more information about mine subsidence, mine subsidence insurance, or issues surrounding mine subsidence such as buying or selling a home in mine subsidence affected areas, please visit our website at: or call us at 800-433-6743.

Kathy Moran, Consumer Education