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  • FIRST POST
    • icebergx
    • By icebergx 6th Mar 18, 11:47 PM
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    icebergx
    Neighbours boiler pipe burst. Damaged wall claim
    • #1
    • 6th Mar 18, 11:47 PM
    Neighbours boiler pipe burst. Damaged wall claim 6th Mar 18 at 11:47 PM
    Hi all, I'm asking this on behalf of a friend,
    He's just moved into a house and his neighbours boiler pipe (in his attic) burst the other day. Water's run down my friend's wall and damaged them.

    The neighbour knocked on my friend's door and told him that his insurance wouldn't cover the damage in my friend's property... Surely this must be wrong? All the damage was caused by the neghbour's damaged pipes, so he must be to blame (I presume.)

    I suspect the neighbour might not be insured. My friend is. What's the best process to follow here? Any help/advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks in advance.
Page 1
    • AnotherJoe
    • By AnotherJoe 7th Mar 18, 1:22 AM
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    AnotherJoe
    • #2
    • 7th Mar 18, 1:22 AM
    • #2
    • 7th Mar 18, 1:22 AM
    Insurance is a red herring.

    Assuming the neighbour is responsible for the damage (maybe they arent if its counted as a an act of god or some such) then the neighbour needs to pay. Either directly or via their insurers.

    So, get an estimate, send them a bill.
    • huckster
    • By huckster 7th Mar 18, 6:23 AM
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    huckster
    • #3
    • 7th Mar 18, 6:23 AM
    • #3
    • 7th Mar 18, 6:23 AM
    Each homeowner is responsible for Insuring their own property.

    You can claim on own Home Insurance and IF it can be proven a third party such as a neighbour is legally responsible, then Insurers will try to recover any payouts.

    But it is unlikely the neighbour will be legally liable unless there is proof they failed to maintain the boiler/heating system and they should have been aware that their actions might cause a loss to a third party to happen. E.g. If they were aware a boiler or pipe was leaking for many days or weeks and they failed to get it fixed.
    The comments I post are personal opinion. Always refer to official information sources before relying on internet forums. If you have a problem with any organisation, enter into their official complaints process at the earliest opportunity, as sometimes complaints have to be started within a certain time frame.
    • benten69
    • By benten69 7th Mar 18, 7:21 AM
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    benten69
    • #4
    • 7th Mar 18, 7:21 AM
    • #4
    • 7th Mar 18, 7:21 AM
    As huckster said, you friend needs to claim off of their insurance and then they will try to recover costs from the 3rd party. Happened to me where a roof tile came off and damaged the neighbours car. I called my insurance and they said they will fix my roof but will not deal direct with the neighbours car. Neighbours would have to claim off of their insurance then recover costs from mine.

    Even got my insurers to send out a letter to show the neighbours that's what they said and not just me being awkward or something, as I had no issues with them claiming off my insurers.
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    • eddddy
    • By eddddy 7th Mar 18, 7:35 AM
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    eddddy
    • #5
    • 7th Mar 18, 7:35 AM
    • #5
    • 7th Mar 18, 7:35 AM
    The neighbour will be responsible for the damage to your friends house, if the neighbour was negligent....

    ... i.e. if the neighbour did something that a reasonable person would not do, that resulted in the damage.

    For example, perhaps a reasonable person would not put boiler pipework in a cold loft and leave the boiler switched off in freezing temperatures, causing a pipe to freeze and burst (if that's what happened).


    So if your friend believes that his neighbour was negligent, he can claim from the neighbour (and the neighbour can claim from their own insurance, if they want).

    Otherwise your friend can claim on his own insurance, and pay the excess, plus increased premiums in the future.
    • icebergx
    • By icebergx 7th Mar 18, 12:34 PM
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    • 81 Thanks
    icebergx
    • #6
    • 7th Mar 18, 12:34 PM
    • #6
    • 7th Mar 18, 12:34 PM
    Insurance is a red herring.
    So, get an estimate, send them a bill.
    Originally posted by AnotherJoe
    How would he be able to enforce this? Could it involve court proceedings?

    So if your friend believes that his neighbour was negligent, he can claim from the neighbour (and the neighbour can claim from their own insurance, if they want).

    Otherwise your friend can claim on his own insurance, and pay the excess, plus increased premiums in the future.
    Originally posted by eddddy
    So it seems like this comes down to negligence, which I guess is a difficult thing to prove?
    He only moved into the house a few weeks ago, so doesn't have any prior knowledge regarding the neighbour's boiler, or its condition.

    The general consensus seems to be that he'll have to claim off his own insurers, who may (or may not) claim off the neighbour (or their insurers. If that's the case, fair enough. It does seem at odds when compared with motor insurance though... But maybe I'm mistaken.
    Either way, it seems unfair that my mate should have to fork-out for his excess, and potentially face a hike in his premium, when he goes to renew, as no fault lies with him...
    Last edited by icebergx; 07-03-2018 at 1:11 PM.
    • Aretnap
    • By Aretnap 7th Mar 18, 4:29 PM
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    Aretnap
    • #7
    • 7th Mar 18, 4:29 PM
    • #7
    • 7th Mar 18, 4:29 PM
    The general consensus seems to be that he'll have to claim off his own insurers, who may (or may not) claim off the neighbour (or their insurers. If that's the case, fair enough. It does seem at odds when compared with motor insurance though... But maybe I'm mistaken.
    Originally posted by icebergx
    Motor insurance works on exactly the same principles; liability follows negligence, and you can only claim against someone else's insurance if you can prove that their negligence led to the accident.

    The difference is that in car accidents negligence is usually quite easy to establish (if someone drives into the back of you he was almost certainly either driving too fast or not looking where he was going...), and the vast majority of car accidents are caused by bad driving of one form or another. However there are still a few cases where there is no blame on anybody's part, for example where a driver with no history of medical problems has a heart attack at the wheel, and in those cases everybody has to claim from their own policies.

    Either way, it seems unfair that my mate should have to fork-out for his excess, and potentially face a hike in his premium, when he goes to renew, as no fault lies with him...
    If his house was damaged by a storm or a fire, or if he was burgled, no fault would lie with him, but all of those things would involve paying his excess and potentially paying higher premiums next year as well...
    • eddddy
    • By eddddy 7th Mar 18, 6:31 PM
    • 6,317 Posts
    • 6,175 Thanks
    eddddy
    • #8
    • 7th Mar 18, 6:31 PM
    • #8
    • 7th Mar 18, 6:31 PM
    It does seem at odds when compared with motor insurance though... But maybe I'm mistaken.
    Originally posted by icebergx
    Motor insurance has exactly the same principle.

    If another driver is negligent and damages your car, they have to pay for the damage.

    That negligence might be...
    - They didn't look properly at a junction and drove into you
    - They were following you too close and couldn't stop in time
    etc

    If the other driver wasn't negligent, they don't have to pay for any damage.


    Just another thought - how much damage was done? If the walls just need drying out and re-painting, I'd be tempted to buy some paint and do it myself - rather than paying an excess, plus increased premiums.

    (If your friend does decide to do it himself, he shouldn't contact his insurer to discuss it. If he contacts them, it may be recorded as a 'loss incident' - even if no claim is made. That might increase his premiums.)
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