OKLAHOMA CITY - Roger Pugh’s walls are covered with plaques recognizing him for his achievements as a journalist, editor and publisher.
Even though he’s retired now, he's still a watchdog.
He contacted the In Your Corner team about a letter he received in the mail.
“I suspect that was the old journalist in me, something [I] sensed,” Roger said. “I made a phone call. I didn't dig into it. I called [In Your Corner] to do that.”
The letter looks like it could be from your water company, but we know it's from HomeServe USA.
We've reported on them before.
They want to sell you water line insurance.
Basically, it's a warranty for repairs to the water and sewer lines that run from your house to the street.
What caught Roger's eye though was the AARP logo on the letter, since Roger is an AARP member.
“I thought that just doesn't sound like the kind of deal they'd endorse,” he said.
We took roger's concerns to AARP Oklahoma's State Director, Sean Voskuhl.
“Upon further investigation and escalating this complaint to our national office, we found out HomeServe USA is a licensed provider for AARP, which allows them to market AARP members regarding their products and services,” he said.
Voskuhl tells the In Your Corner team AARP’S national office will reevaluate its relationship with HomeServe USA.
A quick search of HomeServe online pulls up a bunch of complaints, although the company has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.
We know they paid large settlements to Attorneys General in six states but have since made changes to their marketing materials.
Here's HomeServe USA's official statement:
“HomeServe’s settlements with several Attorney Generals involved matters that were largely addressed six years ago and have very little to do with our Company today. For years now, our communication materials have clearly presented HomeServe as an independent company with an optional service offering. And our more than 2.7 million customers continue to see the value in what we offer – HomeServe is accredited by the Better Business Bureau with an A+ rating and our Company enjoys both high customer satisfaction scores and large volumes of repeat buyers of our service plans.
The optional coverage within the service plans we offer can be a lifeline for many homeowners – sparing them from potentially thousands of dollars in repair costs and the inconvenience of unexpected home repairs. This is not only understood by the AARP, with whom our Company is the exclusive program provider, but also by the leadership of over 400 cities, municipalities and utilities around the U.S.” – HomeServe USA
Roger said he’ll pass on the water line coverage.
“Again, it might be a perfectly good program, and I don't have any problem with it if it is and they pay like they say they're supposed to,” he said. “[If] somebody wants it, great.”