New homeowner has unusual insurance claim

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By Jim Carr By Jim Carr

EL MIRAGE, Ariz. -- Carlos Murillo is the proud new owner of a house that that he recently purchased in El Mirage.

"When they said they accepted our offer, we were very happy,” he said.

The home was a short sale and before he purchased it, Murillo did what a lot of buyers do. He had it professionally inspected.

"He basically checked out everything from electrical to structural to appliances,” Murillo said. “Everything checked out OK."

The inspector took a lot of pictures including one that shows an air-conditioning unit on the side of the home. It's an important photo because when Murillo closed on his home and signed all the paperwork to complete the real estate transaction, he discovered that the air conditioner had been stolen.

"You buy a new home and you're so excited and then you see something like that," he said. "It's devastating."

Murillo filed a claim with his insurance company, Ameriprise. They looked into the matter and issued a check for just $1,700, an amount that seemed extremely low to replace a home air conditioner.

"I feel like I am being robbed,” Murillo said. “I got robbed of my AC and I'm being robbed by the insurance company because they're not giving me what I think I should get."

So, 3 On Your Side got involved.

Ameriprise discovered there was dual coverage on Murillo's home. In other words, in the day or two leading up to the closing, Ameriprise insured the house for Murillo at the same time the seller had coverage with their insurance company. As a result, Ameriprise says it paid its half and is expecting the seller's insurance company to pay the other half.

Murillo said he's glad 3 On Your Side got to the bottom of the problem, but he still needs $1,700 from the other insurance company soon.

"I followed all the procedures that everyone told me I needed to follow,” he said. “I turned in everything I needed to turn in and now this is happening to us."

3 On Your Side is in contact with the seller's insurance company to find out if and when they issued a check. Hopefully, we can get this resolved for Murillo before the summer heat gets here.