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Homes with lightning rods earn discount from AIG.

American International Group is offering a 2% discount for homeowners premiums for homeowners who purchase a certified lightning protection system, installed by a Lightning Protection Institute certified installer.

Damage from lightning losses costs $1 billion annually in homeowners claims, according to the Insurance Information Institute. That's roughly 5% of total residential claims, AIG said.

Despite those statistics, underwriters often overlook lightning as a specific peril, the company said. And while there is no industry policy regarding discounts for lightning protection, insurers can refuse to renew coverage after a lightning claim, unless the insured obtains a lightning protection system.

The discount is offered for homeowners who install a system that includes a lightning rod, surge arresters for the electrical entrance and surge suppressors for the resident's electronic devices.

Severe thunderstorms caused an estimated $4.9 billion in insured loss claims during the second quarter of 2003, according to the Property Claim Services. And the Insurance Services Office has cited lightning as the leading cause of homeowners losses from 1999 to 2002--greater than losses due to wind and hail, water damage and freezing, or theft.
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Title Annotation:Marketplace
Comment:Homes with lightning rods earn discount from AIG.(Marketplace)
Author:Goch, Lynna
Publication:Best's Review
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 1, 2004
Words:183
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