Who is responsible for flat damage?

Who is responsible for flat damage?

9:33 AM, 5th September 2022, About 3 weeks ago 13

Text Size

Hello everyone, A tenant went on holiday for a month, came back and her flat had been robbed.

Thieves had damaged the windows and wooden flooring, made a mess elsewhere so a deep clean will be needed.

She claims it’s my responsibility to make all good again and organise a clean and fix the windows.

Is that right??

Thank you,

Steven



Comments

Neil Patterson View Profile

10:03 AM, 5th September 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Key questions for me would be how did they break-in and what does your landlords insurance state is covered?

SteveoA

11:11 AM, 5th September 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Neil Patterson at 05/09/2022 - 10:03
Unfortunately I have no landlord insurance, I'm thinking do I really need this insurance? in 18 years of being a landlord this is the first time I've had this issue. Police reckon they got through a window as its a ground floor flat, a hinge was broken, but it could be the tenant left it slightly open, I'll never know!

David

11:34 AM, 5th September 2022, About 3 weeks ago

You're responsible for repairing the windows and flooring. What does your standard buildings insurance cover? Do you have a contract clause requiring the tenant to notify you if they're away for more than 2 weeks? Did that happen?

Graham Bowcock View Profile

11:54 AM, 5th September 2022, About 3 weeks ago

If it's a flat then there should be buildins insurance in place which will cover repairs to damaged doors and windows.

Anythign else is then between you and the tenant; they should have their own cover for contents - if they haven't then it's not up to the landlord to make good. Cleaning is down to the tenant.

Internal damage may be covered by the communal policy, but if not then it's down to you.

SteveoA

12:01 PM, 5th September 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by David at 05/09/2022 - 11:34
As it's a flat I thought the buildings insurance (arranged by managing agents on behalf of freeholders) doesn't cover individual flats' windows and internals.

Although there's a clause to let me know if away for more than 2 weeks, she didn't inform me!

James Nelson

12:01 PM, 5th September 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Going through insurance will take a ridiculous amount of time unfortunately. I assume you’ll need to have the problem resolved a lot sooner than that

Rod

12:14 PM, 5th September 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Normally this would be down to your insurer, subject to their terms - forced entry via window would normally qualify. You chose to self insure, so the repairs will be your responsibility.

Burglary is unpleasant at the best of times, and if your tenant lives on her own, she will probably feel very vulnerable right now.

Window - urgent as basic security requirement
Floor - if damage has created a trip hazard, then urgent. Otherwise, you have to decide on how good the tenant is - fix now or wait until end of tenancy.
Clean - if tenancy requires notice for extended period away, you could put the cost on her. Again, depends on how good the tenant is.

If she is a good tenant and you want to keep her, you will do what it takes to keep her, on the expectation of being able to raise the rent a little.

Smartermind

12:21 PM, 5th September 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Quite simply the landlord is responsible for the building and the tenant for their contents and internal cleaning. If the police ever catch the burglar, then both parties can sue the burglar.

Smartermind

12:25 PM, 5th September 2022, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by James Nelson at 05/09/2022 - 12:01
Claiming on insurance for buildings damage following a simple burglary with forced entry shouldn't take a "ridiculous amount of time". The landlord will be expected to have immediately secured the property.

Contents claims can take time to resolve but the landlord is not liable for the tenants contents.

Alexander Henry

12:51 PM, 5th September 2022, About 3 weeks ago

This is why you should have used an insurance broker. He/she would tell you immediately what is and isn't covered. I've never understood the rush in recent years for people do go direct. If you decided to self-insure then obviously you must pay out of the premiums you saved.

1 2

Leave Comments

In order to post comments you will need to Sign In or Sign Up for a FREE Membership

or

Don't have an account? Sign Up

Landlord Tax Planning Book Now