Water splashing down from upstair unit!

rabbit10108April 15, 2006

I left my condo apartment unattended for two days (April 9-10). When I came back home on April 11 around 12 AM, my whole bathroom was soaked with water and the water soaked through my bedroom's and hallway carpet. I called the Management office up, which was absolutely no help as the Manager told me they are only responsible for anything outside the units. I went upstair to tell the water damage of my unit, but the tenants seem not aware of any water leakage from their bathroom at all.

I used the steam vacuum to vacuum up to 10 buckets of detergent-like water. So I assumed that the leak was from their washing machine and splash it all down to my unit. I called the plumber up, he said that the leak may come from the pipe burst on top of ceiling since he cannot even get in the upstair unit. The only way to find out is to open my ceiling up to check. I called the landlord of the upstair unit (there's only two level in the building) The landlord told me that how can I prove/tell the water is coming from his upstair unit? First, the water damage is somehow not on the washing machine side (as my bathroom is same layout as the upstair unit). The water was leaking out from the ventiliation on top of the toilet. But ever since the upstair stopped the use of the washing machine (as I tell them what happened), there was no leak in my bathroom. So I am not sure what are the possible steps I could take...

Thanks for any advices!

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have your plumber find the leak. if it means tearing out your ceiling, then so be it. if the leak is from the other unit then you can get the landlord involved to pay the plumber's bill. YOU may have to pay it, then get them to pay you back, but this is what must be done.

or move.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2006 at 10:25AM
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If you haven't repaired the damage yet you should call your insurance company. If your insurance company pays for the damage, they will most likey go after the owner of the upstairs unit. I had my insurance company sue the other owner because he wouldn't pay. Of course, if it's small amount they probably won't bother. The interesting thing is, if they sue, they will sue in your name. The typical policy allows this.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2007 at 11:17PM
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Check your association bylaws. Usually you are not responsible for plumbing in the wall if that's the source and the association would step in as that would be a common area. If it's the neighbors washer then your association wouldn't come into play and you have to fight it out with your neighbor.

Also check your insurance policy carefully. Most will pay for the resulting water damage but not the pipe repair itself. They will also call your association anyway to find out why they are not paying as the association usually has primary coverage but also have high ductibles. Your homeowner dues go to pay for building insurance so don't be afraid to check that route if it's a pipe issue and not the neighbors washer.

If it's from your neighbor you may have to have your carrier pay first and then they will go after your neighbor. Depending on the amount of damage you may not want to file a claim because after your deductible it may not be that much.

Good luck, take pictures and keep track of everything in case you do turn in a claim. It makes it much easier on us insurance adjusters.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2007 at 1:32AM
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