My garage roof has collapsed onto my tenants car

by Readers Question

8:12 AM, 9th October 2013
About 5 years ago

My garage roof has collapsed onto my tenants car

Make Text Bigger
My garage roof has collapsed onto my tenants car

I had a call on Saturday from my tenant to say the garage roof had fell in and covered his car in rubble.

I don’t know how this has happened and have never been advised by the tenant that there was any problems with the roof prior to this.

It appears that a couple of the other garages in the block have had similar issues.My garage roof has collapsed onto my tenants car

Ive spoken to the management company who have said that the garages aren’t part of their block insurance, so I’ll have to get the roof fixed myself.

This seems fair … however the tenant has asked who foots the bill for his car which has been damaged???

I’ve never had this issue before and wondered if any readers could help?

Many thanks

Julie



Comments

Mark Alexander

8:16 AM, 9th October 2013
About 5 years ago

Hi Julie

I've never had this problem so I don't know the answer. I'd get straight onto my landlords liability insurance provider if it was me.

Good luck.
.

Joe Bloggs

8:25 AM, 9th October 2013
About 5 years ago

'Ive spoken to the management company who have said that the garages aren’t part of their block insurance, so I’ll have to get the roof fixed myself.'

THAT DONT SOUND RIGHT AT ALL. YOU MIGHT WELL HAVE A CLAIM AGAINST THE MANAGEMENT COMPANY IF YOU WERENT PREVIOUSLY TOLD ABOUT THIS.

Robert Desbruslais

8:31 AM, 9th October 2013
About 5 years ago

Surely it is the management and freeholders responsibility to keep the property safe, including the garage block and the site as a whole? If they have had similar problems with other garages they are being seriously negligent in at least not informing the of the risks and telling owners not to use them until repairs are carried out to make them safe; someone could have been killed. In my view they have no choice but to pay; its the least they can do.

Adrian Jones

9:12 AM, 9th October 2013
About 5 years ago

Totally agree with Robert Desbruslais.

I have a couple of flats with garages which are covered by the buildings insurance.

David Sweeney

9:26 AM, 9th October 2013
About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Adrian Jones" at "09/10/2013 - 09:12":

I agree with the other thoughts but would suggest that there are 2 liabilities here -

The landlord is liable to the tenant and separate to that, the freeholder is liable to the leaseholder.

Therefore, any problems Julie has getting the freeholder to pay should not affect her dealing with the tenant.

Neil Patterson

10:39 AM, 9th October 2013
About 5 years ago

I have had a chat with our insurance team and they find it odd that the block buildings policy does not cover the garages.

Also if it is covered it would depend on whether there was a building defect in the construction apparently. Please do check your tenants insurance, but be prepared that it does not cover a buildings issue.

Ultimately the tenant will need to contact his car insurance company and they will take it from there.

Sorry I haven't got anything more useful.

mike wilson

11:56 AM, 9th October 2013
About 5 years ago

I am always surprised that many property owners don't understand what they own. And forgive me, I clearly don't know the details of your case and am in Scotland which has a different legal system.
But a few comments: Someone owns the garage whether it is part of your bigger block or not. I have been in a situation where the 'block of garages' was in different ownership to the 'block of flats'.

Second point is that you ought to know what you own. Did you not get a copy of the deeds?

Whoever owns the garage is responsible for any damage to the car and of course as someone pointed out someone could have been injured. So the owner should have insurance.

Good luck.

Robert M

12:06 PM, 9th October 2013
About 5 years ago

Personally I would be giving the management company a lot of grief. Check paperwork to find out if you should have known the garage was not insured. Ask other flat owners. Did your solicitor bring this to your notice when you bought the flat? Was it brought to your solicitor's attention? It is possible you should have known and should have insurance.

However, you cannot be liable unless you have been negligent. For this, I think you would have needed to know the roof was dangerous and taken no action.

I suspect the management company have been negligent. I would many answers before I paid to have the roof repaired. Would it not be better to have them all done at once?

John Daley

12:58 PM, 9th October 2013
About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Robert M " at "09/10/2013 - 12:06":

Don't talk rubbish - you have strict duty of care to the tenant and his property. The garage roof did not fall in because it lost the will to live.

You as the landlord are responsible for ENSURING that the property is safe and in a suitable condition for letting. What would have happened if the tenant or his kids were in the garage at the time.

If this lame 'it wasn't my fault' whining characterises lalndlords as a whole it's high time you are regulated.

You may have a remedy against your management company for failing to ensure the property was sufficiently insured but in any case you will be paying for the repairs to the motor personally or through insurance

HB Welcome

13:30 PM, 9th October 2013
About 5 years ago

Sorry if this is advertising (no connection) Mark, please remove if against posting rules, but it is a very informative article regarding liability;

http://www.ashburnham-insurance.co.uk/escape-of-water-leaks-in-flats.html

In this case, the upstairs flat owner would need to be proved legally negligent in their actions to be held responsible for the costs. In most cases, the leak is just an unfortunate accident or unplanned incident in which case no one can be held legally responsible. If the insurer of the damaged flat can obtain proof of negligence and believes they can recover the costs from the flat above then they will endeavour to do so but you will find this is very rarely the case.

Maybe Robert M is not talking such rubbish after all.

1 2 4

Leave Comments

Please Log-In OR Become a member to reply to comments or subscribe to new comment notifications.

Forgotten your password?

OR

BECOME A MEMBER

And the landlord vote goes to - ?

The Landlords Union

Become a Member, it's FREE

Our mission is to facilitate the sharing of best practice amongst UK landlords, tenants and letting agents

Learn More