Once again sinkholes are a hot topic in Central Florida. From the huge hole that opened in Seffner last week to the several non-disclosure issues in real estate sales being reported by the news and even being prosecuted in Federal Court. The article below “Sinkhole Warning Signs” gives a very generalized idea of the distribution of KNOWN sinkholes in the bay area. Certainly many, many more exist that are not yet known and may never be actually seen at the surface in our lifetime.
While the article does list some of the warning signs of potential sinkhole activity affecting a property, it is a costly process to perform testing to determine if sinkhole activity is causing these observed issues. Don’t forget, most insurance policies do not cover damage to a home caused by sinkhole activity as of 2015 so you may be stuck with an enormous repair bill if you are not covered. On the flip side, if you did purchase the additional coverage for sinkhole loss, the standard of “structural damage” required as part of a sinkhole loss to be covered is very high. Minor cracking or other damage may not meet the definition of “structural damage” set forth in Florida Statutes and in policies since 2011, therefore the expensive coverage may still not provide coverage.
Sinkhole warning signs
(WFLA) — Florida has more sinkholes than any other state in the nation, according to Florida’s Department of Financial Services.
Sinkholes can be hidden below the surface, or they can be seen above the surface. The Southwest Florida Water Management District describes sinkholes as depressions or collapses in the land surface. Sinkholes come in all sizes, they can be shallow, or deep, and can be small or large. READ MORE
Be sure to discuss the coverage with your property Insurance agent or contact my office, McMenamin Law Group at 727-741-3913 to discuss what that coverage actually means.