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8/15/2014 - Poll: Food Spoilage Biggest Cost for Consumers After Lengthy Outage

The cost of food spoilage can be surprisingly high after a power outage, many homeowners have found.

If it seems like power outages are taking longer to fix these days than in previous years, there may be something to these suspicions. According to the Washington Post, blackouts are taking 20% longer to fix and occurring with greater frequency, as approximately 350 took place nationwide between 2005 and 2009 versus 150 from 2000 to 2004.

And on top of being highly inconvenient, power outages wind up costing homeowners right where it hurts - their wallet.

According to a recent poll performed by Harris Interactive, close to 70% of U.S. adults said that they've been adversely affected by a power outage. In fact, of those who'd experienced an outage that lasted at least 12 hours, the most common outage-related cost was replacing food that had spoiled.

"There are a lot of real-world issues that can occur when the power goes out," said Amanda Grandy, marketing manager for an outdoor power equipment company that commissioned the poll. "This survey brings to light the issues that can affect a family when the home goes dark and hopefully gets people thinking about preparing now before the next outage."

Homeowners insurance provides some of that preparation. If food spoils due to a power outage and needs to be thrown away, most insurers will reimburse policyholders for their losses up to a certain amount, according to the Insurance Information Institute.

For more information on food spoilage coverage and other lesser-known protections,  talk to a local Selective agent.

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