Rochester partners with company to provide service line warranti - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

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Rochester homeowners now have the option of purchasing protection plans in case exterior sewer or septic lines on their property break.

The city partnered with Service Line Warranties of America to provide affordable monthly or annual coverage. The initial cost of an external sewer line warranty through SLWA is $7.75 per month.

The Rochester City Council approved a Marketing and Licensing agreement with SLWA back in October. A couple of days ago, city homeowners received a blue postcard notice from the company, saying what service they provide.

It is an optional service that protects against damage to pipes on homeowners' properties.Repairs to pipes are not covered by basic homeowners insurance or by the city of Rochester.

The coverage is not part of a city department or city function, and is not associated with RPU or Public works. But it is through the agreement that the company can to come in and offer this to homeowners.

Some people were confused, one reason is that RPU offers a similar warranty for repairs to water lines, but not for sewer lines.

"What the agreement allowed for was that they could utilize the city's logo and signature, and I think that's where the confusion has come in," said Redevelopment Director Terry Spaeth. "You know, a person sees that and they think it's coming directly from the city or on behalf of the city. But again, this is just through agreement via a third party vendor."

Spaeth said the city has a number of older neighborhoods and areas that may have issues with aging sewer lines, and from time to time a sewer line does break, and it is somewhat of an expensive repair. It is a homeowner's responsibility to repair and replace broken or leaking utility lines.

SLWA work with local licensed contractors to provide the service to homeowners. Spaeth said the company will follow up with another letter containing more information on how to sign up.

The city of Rochester has provided more information on its website about the company under 'News' as well as a link to frequently asked questions about utility line responsibility and warranties.

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