Tools and a warning..........

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Forum topic by Todd Thomas posted 06-14-2009 11:54 PM 2963 views 0 times favorited 46 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Todd Thomas

4969 posts in 4735 days

06-14-2009 11:54 PM

Man….talk about going from bad to worse…...first the bad… Finished a 16 by 30 deck…took my tools to the house I’m building for us and came back at 6:30 am the next morning, I’m sure you’ve guessed by now where I’m going with this. Somebody broke in the back door and took ALL my small tools, roughly $7,500 worth. They left my 12” sliding miter that was on a stand , my contractor table saw and my new dewalt power washer, I guess their truck was full…..:-( I remodel for a living so not only did I loose the tools but it is putting a cramp on the working as well…..Police didn’t/couldn’t/wouldn’t do much, not sure what I wanted them to do just something other than take the report. The thing that really pisses me off is that they took their time, had a couple of smokes, had a few drink out of my cooler and ate some snake food me wife had brought up to the house for me…..NOW THE WORSE…
I have had a builders risk plan with Zurich since 2005, I flip houses most of the time, at that time my agent told me I had $20000 in tool coverage, because I asked at the time. Being mostly a one man show that was enough coverage, I rent the big stuff if I need it….I report the crime to my agent and said” I understand I have a $1,000 deductible and up to $20,000 in coverage for my tools” and she said “yes you do” and that she would follow up with the claim…...later in the day I get a call from the adjuster and he tell me that there is no tool coverage on the plan I have and that it is not even an option on that plan…...Sooooo I decide to go talk to my agent in person…when I got to their office she was at lunch so another agent asked if she could help me. So I went on and told her the story and said” it is my underatanding that I have a $1,000 deductible and up to $20,000 in tool coverage” and she said…”yes you do” ...I explained that I had just talked to the adjuster and he said that I didn’t have ANY tool coverage…a blank look fell on her face…she pulled my policy, same as all the others, and we began to read through it….it said, id space “No coverage for contractor tools”...she keep looking through the policy because she was sure there was coverage…we came upon some wording the said “scaffolding, forms and some other stuff, not sure I was seeing red after that, was covered up to $20,000… so the agents did not know… I went on to the top guy…and told him my story and that 2 of his agent had told me 3 time, once in 2005 when I bought the policy and 2 more times within 2 hours that I had coverage and asked him what could be done…..I’ll try to quit rambling, he said nothing could/would be done….when I told him that I used to be an agent and the he could turn it into his E&O insurance that they carry because this was clearly the case he said no that he wasn’t interested in that good bye…...

Well I’m just a poor working stiff and can not afford to replace 7500 in tools…no tools no work just screwed by the criminals and my own insurance agent….I’m talking a a couple of lawyers be they don’t sound very confident that we could win if this goes to court…...this blows me away…. unbelievable

What can/should I do… anybody had anything similar?

Stupid in TN

-- Todd, Oak Ridge, TN, Hello my name is Todd and I'm a Toolholic, I bought my last tool 10 days, no 4 days, oh heck I bought a tool on the way here! †

46 replies so far

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


22837 posts in 4963 days

#1 posted 06-15-2009 12:27 AM

Yeah!! You’re covered for everything, except for anything that happens. In my experience insurance agents & stock brokers are congenital liars. Couldn’t do the job if they weren’t. Certainly can’t have a conscience that is for sure.

Cops are never there unless you don’t want one. I lost $10k tools. They never tried to look up the license # I gave them for 6 weeks!! It was just a property crime is what I was told. Nobody gave me a break on any of my bills since I was put out of business by “just a property crime.”

Sorry to hear about you loss, been there and done that:-((

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View CharlieM1958's profile


16292 posts in 5505 days

#2 posted 06-15-2009 12:42 AM

As a Hurricane Katrina victim, I’ve heard a million stories of people who thought they had coverage for something and turned out not to.

Unfortunately, I doubt you have much recourse in this case. But you are providing others in this forum with a valuable lesson: Regardless of what your agent tells you, always read every word of your policy as soon as you get it, and if anything seems unclear, call the company (not the agent) for clarification.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Don K.'s profile

Don K.

1075 posts in 4613 days

#3 posted 06-15-2009 12:45 AM

While I have never been robbed to this extent..I have had tools stolen from job sites before. As I got bigger, the fear of being robbed and losing everything terrified me. I asked my agent the same thing…she told me that insurance for contractors tools was outrageous in price, and she was right…I could not afford it.

But she asked me were I kept my tools when not in use, I told her at my house…and she told me if they were every stolen she could make a claim on my home owners policy. Now I have never had to test this…..but you may be able to ask your agent …assuming you keep your tools at your home when not being used. Can not hurt to try anyways.

-- Don S.E. OK

View Les Hastings's profile

Les Hastings

1306 posts in 5060 days

#4 posted 06-15-2009 12:53 AM

Man Todd that really sucks Bud,,,,,,,,,,,,I hope you can get things worked out with the insurance company on this. Good Luck!

-- Les, Wichita, Ks. (I'd rather be covered in saw dust!)

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


22837 posts in 4963 days

#5 posted 06-15-2009 01:24 AM

Don, Your homeowners policy probably excludes “tools of the trade”, been there and done that too before I went into business. I have extensive experience with thieves and cops. It ain’t like TV, thieves win and cops don’t do much but take reports for insurance compaines if there is any coverage.

CBS’s 60 minutes did a piece on insurance companies after the earth quake in CA a few yrs ago. Most of the biggies like St Farm, Allstate, ect, piad less than 1/2 what they owed to policiy holders. A woman in the CA ins commissioners office exposed it. The ins commissioner took a million or 2 in campaign contributions, resigned and moved to Hawaii. The feds investigated, could find no evidence of wrong doing. Some how it was in court, don’t remember all the details, but it was thrown out, policy holders screwed again!! :-((

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Steelmum's profile


355 posts in 5249 days

#6 posted 06-15-2009 01:24 AM

When my trailer was stolen, I was told it was not covered for theft. However, if I had ASKED it to be and it wasn’t I could sue. Talk to a lawyer. You asked if it was covered, you was told that it was covered. You pay the agents to do your policy for you, they screwed up, you should be able to sue.

-- Berta in NC

View a1Jim's profile


118297 posts in 4864 days

#7 posted 06-15-2009 01:26 AM

Man that sucks I’m out there just like you and if my tools were not covered I don’t know what I would do.
Is your shop at your house,if so maybe your home owners covers it. Man I really feel for you.


View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


22837 posts in 4963 days

#8 posted 06-15-2009 01:32 AM

There isn’t enough damages to bother with attys. The clown that put me on Topamax cost us at least $250K. Attys say it costs at least 300k to go after him. In the last 25 yrs, my policy was for less then $10k, get on with your life, you aren’t going to collect anyway in most cases. You don’t need the aggrevation. May as well go do something you will get paid for with your time. That agent isn’t going to put a claim on his ins because it will cost him more for premiums if he isn’t cancelled. Ins has gotten to be a very hard business in the last decade, far beyond what anyone would have imagined in teh last century.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View rhett's profile


743 posts in 4954 days

#9 posted 06-15-2009 01:41 AM

Only thing worse than a liar is a thief. Might go to some local pawn shops, tell the owner what got stolen and have him keep a look out. Heck, might just start checking them to get your stuff back. Most POS tool thieves just hock them for cash. Good friend had a fein multimaster stolen off a jobsite. Bought it back at a pawn shop two weeks later for $40. Better to get em back cheap than pay full price. Sorry for your loss. Hope justice is served.

-- Doubt kills more dreams than failure.

View John Ormsby's profile

John Ormsby

1288 posts in 5024 days

#10 posted 06-15-2009 02:00 AM

I think you could at least take the agent and the company he works for to small claims court. At least you might be able to recover some of your loss. It is definitely worth a try. This company will at least be on record of doing this to someone. I HATE THIEVES and the system that protects them!!!

-- Oldworld, Fair Oaks, Ca

View DeputyDawg's profile


196 posts in 5252 days

#11 posted 06-15-2009 02:15 AM

Two things. #1 You said you were working on your own home. (your home,your tools) Homeowner’s policy should cover them. #2 In every state there is a Insurance comission on the state level. You can make a formal complaint there. I’ve done it before and NO INSURANCE COMPANY WANTS A COMPLAINT TO THE STATE. Lot’s of luck and hope something turns up good for you. Keep us posted

-- DeputyDawg

View Kindlingmaker's profile


2659 posts in 4813 days

#12 posted 06-15-2009 02:26 AM

There are Two Thieves, The robbers and the insurance company…

-- Never board, always knotty, lots of growth rings

View Don K.'s profile

Don K.

1075 posts in 4613 days

#13 posted 06-15-2009 02:33 AM

Bad thing about checking out the pawn shops…Is here in Oklahoma you have to “Prove” they knowingly received stolen goods to get them back for free..and they are not going to admit it. My parents were robbed a few years ago by some teenagers….they found some of their jewelry in a pawn shop. They called the cops…it was Identified as theirs etc…..but to get it back from the pawn shop…they had to “Pay” the pawn shop what he payed for it….how’s that for a “Legal System” having to buy back what was stolen from you in the first place !!!

-- Don S.E. OK

View Todd Thomas 's profile

Todd Thomas

4969 posts in 4735 days

#14 posted 06-15-2009 02:53 AM

Thanks for all your comments and advice….my home owners will NOT cover it, so I was told by my agent….no tools of the trade….so I guess the next time I have tools stolen I need to burn the house down????
very frustrating….talked to a lawyer last week meeting with them this coming week…I will keep you posted…
Deputy Dawg …very good idea on the insurance department…I will add that to my list,....thanks

-- Todd, Oak Ridge, TN, Hello my name is Todd and I'm a Toolholic, I bought my last tool 10 days, no 4 days, oh heck I bought a tool on the way here! †

View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 5601 days

#15 posted 06-15-2009 03:01 AM

Yep you where insured, and protected by the police and by the legal system. Sorry to hear that.

showing 1 through 15 of 46 replies

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