Water damage from unit above, both insurance declined

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Latest post Sun, Feb 19 2017 10:54 AM by karen2222. 2 replies.
  • Wed, Feb 15 2017 10:52 PM

    • wyefei
      Consumer
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on Thu, Feb 16 2017
    • CA
    • Posts 1

    Water damage from unit above, both insurance declined

    My Condo is in California.

    Home above's angle stop under the sink is defected and the leak is hardly noticable and because of that, their insurance denied the liabity claim because of no neglience on the home owner above.

    My own insurance denied it because they claim that the damage is not sudden, because there's already mold and the leak was hardly noticable so it probably took a long time for the mold to grow up.

    I read some of the posts on this forum and figured that home owner is likely not reliable because of no negligence. I am wondering now whether it's possible to perform legal actions against my own insurance arguing that the leak may be long term and not sudden, but it's sudden to me when I noticed and I have no ways to notice it any longer.

    I am really not good at reading the CC&R. There are two sections (about 200 words in total) and if people are interested I can type them in.

    It's kind BS that I paid north of 10K for something I hardly have any fault in. Any advice will be appreciated!

  • Thu, Feb 16 2017 9:15 AM In reply to

    Re: Water damage from unit above, both insurance declined

    wyefei:
    I am wondering now whether it's possible to perform legal actions against my own insurance arguing that the leak may be long term and not sudden, but it's sudden to me when I noticed and I have no ways to notice it any longer.

    You certainly can consult with a local attorney about suing your insurer over the denial of coverage.  You can also file a complaint with the California Department of Insurance.

     

    wyefei:
    It's kind BS that I paid north of 10K for something I hardly have any fault in. Any advice will be appreciated!

    I can appreciate your frustration.  However, insurance covers what it covers, and if this is not within your policy's coverage, then you'll be out of luck.  On a slightly positive side, I think a loss of this sort is something you can write off on your income taxes (not sure about that, though).

  • Sun, Feb 19 2017 10:54 AM In reply to

    Re: Water damage from unit above, both insurance declined

    wyefei:
    I am wondering now whether it's possible to perform legal actions against my own insurance arguing that the leak may be long term and not sudden, but it's sudden to me when I noticed

    My homeowner's insurance policy does not cover mold damage unless it results from a covered loss (basically, either a fire or a big storm that makes a hole in the building envelope that lets the damaging water in).

    The unfortunate truth of the matter is that insurance policies are not as good as they could be, and exclude many things that are not the homeowner's fault. Before you try suing your insurance company you should read your policy. I will guess that you don't have coverage for this event.

    wyefei:
    I am really not good at reading the CC&R.

    The only way the CC&Rs can help you is if they say that unit owners are automatically responsible to pay for damage to other units that result from anything that goes wrong in their unit even if it wasn't their fault. Condos with that kind of wording do exist but they are rare.

    wyefei:
    It's kind BS that I paid north of 10K for something I hardly have any fault in. Any advice will be appreciated!

    All I can suggest is you learn what you can from this experience.  Always do your best to set some savings aside for unexpected expenses (and in case of job loss, too, of course).  Consider saving money on your insurance premiums by increasing the deductible.  And make it a habit to pay attention to your home.

    Listen for unexplained noises and try to figure them out.  Check common sources of trouble such as your air-conditioning system condensate drain.  If you have your own water heater make sure it has a harmless path for the water to drain out if it starts to leak, or if you can't do that then at least buy a leak alarm for it and let your neighbors know what that sounds like.  If your bathtub or shower has grouted tile on the walls, make sure the grout is in good enough condition not to let shower water into the wall.  Keep a plunger handy, and never flush anything down the toilet that should go in the garbage (e.g. tampons or dental floss).

    Except possibly for the listening part, none of the above would have saved you from having this experience.  But if your neighbor had listened and looked, he probably could have saved you both a lot of repairs.

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