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  • FIRST POST
    • BanjoBob
    • By BanjoBob 8th Jul 18, 6:48 PM
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    BanjoBob
    Renting a flat - damage to car in parking - responsibility?
    • #1
    • 8th Jul 18, 6:48 PM
    Renting a flat - damage to car in parking - responsibility? 8th Jul 18 at 6:48 PM
    Hi All,

    Seeking advice on what to do in this situation regarding damage and possible future damage to my car in an assigned car parking that is situated within the gated courtyard for the flat which I rent.

    The situation is:
    We rent a flat which comes with an assigned car parking space.
    The allocated space is within a gated courtyard (for the flats), but unfortunately is situated beneath some of the flat windows (as opposed to some others which are not adjacent, and some which are in a parking garage). Recently, an ornament has fallen out of one of the flat windows and landed on the car, smashing windows and denting panels. The flat owner took responsibility (possibly because the incident was witnessed and they were told that something had fallen from their window), and the repair cost came just shy of 5k.

    Iím now concerned that once i get the car repaired and park it back again in the same spot, that something might happen again but perhaps next time I wonít be lucky to have the responsible person come forward, hence leave me with a large repair bill or increased costs from the result of insurance claims (i.e. renewal increases and possibly loss of no-claims).

    My questions are:
    - Should the flat building management company have insurance to cover such costs?
    - I have raised this problem to them and asked them to resolve (though I am ignored so far) - should this make them responsible (or even liable) for any future issues now that I have raised the situation?
    - Since I rent the apartment with a space, should the landlord do something or have some future responsibility?
Page 1
    • sevenhills
    • By sevenhills 8th Jul 18, 6:56 PM
    • 1,331 Posts
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    sevenhills
    • #2
    • 8th Jul 18, 6:56 PM
    • #2
    • 8th Jul 18, 6:56 PM
    Recently, an ornament has fallen out of one of the flat windows and landed on the car, smashing windows and denting panels.
    Originally posted by chris_bl

    If you are concerned about it happening again, I assume this is because it sounds like a very unlikely scenario.

    • anselld
    • By anselld 8th Jul 18, 6:58 PM
    • 5,811 Posts
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    anselld
    • #3
    • 8th Jul 18, 6:58 PM
    • #3
    • 8th Jul 18, 6:58 PM
    That is why you have insurance.
    Unless the flat or building owner was deemed negligent there was no (legal) need for them to pay up.
    • 3mph
    • By 3mph 8th Jul 18, 7:22 PM
    • 228 Posts
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    3mph
    • #4
    • 8th Jul 18, 7:22 PM
    • #4
    • 8th Jul 18, 7:22 PM
    Get a dash am that has parking mode and point it in the direction of the threat
    • BanjoBob
    • By BanjoBob 8th Jul 18, 7:30 PM
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    BanjoBob
    • #5
    • 8th Jul 18, 7:30 PM
    • #5
    • 8th Jul 18, 7:30 PM
    Unless the flat or building owner was deemed negligent there was no (legal) need for them to pay up.
    Originally posted by anselld
    You mean the owner of my flat i suppose? My landlord / the building mgt company haven't paid. But if i raised the problem to the building management company now, i didn't think unreasonable for them to try to find me another space (although it doesn't solve the root problem), or put netting / shelter / something similar up above those few spaces affected to protect them better (i thought it was an accident waiting to happen when i saw it, and indeed it happened to my car first). Negligence is a strong word though so I can perhaps see your point here - but could the same be said if something now fell on a child's head instead (now that an incident has been known to have occurred)?

    If you mean the owner of another flat who drops something out the window, then i didn't explain how the windows open fully outwards from bottom to top (i.e. hinged at the top), with the bottom part of the window frame that sits between the window ledge and the outside world being only about 1.5cm tall. I never put anything on our ledge by the window as it really seems like basic common sense not to - a light breeze would even blow things out as the frame would only stop something the size of a marble.
    • need an answer
    • By need an answer 8th Jul 18, 7:39 PM
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    need an answer
    • #6
    • 8th Jul 18, 7:39 PM
    • #6
    • 8th Jul 18, 7:39 PM
    You need to treat this claim in the same way you would treat any damage to your car.

    It could easily have happened in any similar location that you parked your car so I don't see that the management company should be responsible for the repair.

    If you want to find out about any other space available to park I also believe that you should do this via your LL.It is their property you rent and their agreement with the management company not yours.

    I'm surprised you have been able to discuss it with the management company at all,the companies I have dealings with all specify that contact should be via the leaseholder and not the tenant as it is ultimately the leaseholder who pays the
    management charges


    Your LL isn't responsible but you could point out that the positioning of the space is less than adequate and they may be able to sort something if they wish with the management company.


    Your other very strong option is to move,you are in rented and you can site it a the main reason you are leaving the property to the LL. Sometimes that will encourage the LL to take action if you and even others have found the space not vandal proof.
    Last edited by need an answer; 08-07-2018 at 7:41 PM.
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    • Pixie5740
    • By Pixie5740 8th Jul 18, 7:46 PM
    • 12,424 Posts
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    Pixie5740
    • #7
    • 8th Jul 18, 7:46 PM
    • #7
    • 8th Jul 18, 7:46 PM
    I suppose if you have concerns about the design of the windows you could raise it with your landlord who could in turn raise it with the freeholder. I doubt the windows would be changed but maybe some sort of netting could be put up to catch falling objects. Damage to your car is a PITA but imagine something fell and hit someone on the head.
    • need an answer
    • By need an answer 8th Jul 18, 7:49 PM
    • 786 Posts
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    need an answer
    • #8
    • 8th Jul 18, 7:49 PM
    • #8
    • 8th Jul 18, 7:49 PM
    I agree pixie its certainly something that perhaps the owner of the property could bring up at the next AGM meeting with the managing company.

    It all depends how proactive they are.
    OP politely suggest that to you LL.

    Some LL's are not aware of potential issues until they are bought up simply because they don't live in the property on a day to day basis


    not unreasonable to speak to the LL imo at least to advise of the issue.
    Last edited by need an answer; 08-07-2018 at 8:00 PM.
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    • BanjoBob
    • By BanjoBob 8th Jul 18, 8:01 PM
    • 12 Posts
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    BanjoBob
    • #9
    • 8th Jul 18, 8:01 PM
    • #9
    • 8th Jul 18, 8:01 PM
    It could easily have happened in any similar location that you parked your car so I don't see that the management company should be responsible for the repair.
    Originally posted by need an answer
    Well, of course i i park in the local tesco I wouldn't expect the flat management people to repair it . Since i am parking in the assigned flat space in the flat gated courtyard though, whilst i can see they can say it was unforeseen for the current damage and not be responsible as such, I was thinking that they might need to take some responsibility for future damage now they are alerted to the scenario and risk of it happening again, and could hence do something to avoid future incidents.

    I'm surprised you have been able to discuss it with the management company at all,the companies I have dealings with all specify that contact should be via the leaseholder and not the tenant as it is ultimately the leaseholder who pays the management charges
    Originally posted by need an answer
    Indeed, they haven't responded to me at all! I emailed them and got ignored .. but yes, I was thinking about going via my landlord next but thought i'd check out opinion on here so i can get my thoughts sanity checked...

    True, one option is to move. Another is to try and rent another space at my own cost but for more peace of mind. Or i could possibly buy a car sized gazebo
    • BanjoBob
    • By BanjoBob 8th Jul 18, 8:04 PM
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    BanjoBob
    I suppose if you have concerns about the design of the windows you could raise it with your landlord who could in turn raise it with the freeholder. I doubt the windows would be changed but maybe some sort of netting could be put up to catch falling objects. Damage to your car is a PITA but imagine something fell and hit someone on the head.
    Originally posted by Pixie5740
    Yep, it was only on this board that I was thinking it could be catastrophic if something fell on someones head - certainly something I think its worth me mentioning through my LL.
    I suppose the counter-argument is that there are so many balconies and windows that people walk past in the city, that everyone can't be expected to put up netting. But then again, ledge/windows are usually designed as poorly as they are in this complex. I'm arguing both side here.. better stop!
    • need an answer
    • By need an answer 8th Jul 18, 8:06 PM
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    need an answer
    Well, of course i i park in the local tesco I wouldn't expect the flat management people to repair it . Since i am parking in the assigned flat space in the flat gated courtyard though, whilst i can see they can say it was unforeseen for the current damage and not be responsible as such, I was thinking that they might need to take some responsibility for future damage now they are alerted to the scenario and risk of it happening again, and could hence do something to avoid future incidents.


    Indeed, they haven't responded to me at all! I emailed them and got ignored .. but yes, I was thinking about going via my landlord next but thought i'd check out opinion on here so i can get my thoughts sanity checked...

    True, one option is to move. Another is to try and rent another space at my own cost but for more peace of mind. Or i could possibly buy a car sized gazebo
    Originally posted by chris_bl

    Sorry you seem to take issue with my response but the management company will have little or no dealings with tenants.

    I guess my q is if you parked in Tesco whos responsibility would you expect the repair to fall on

    You need to get your LL onside simply because that is whom your contract to rent the property is with.


    Buying a car sized gazebo,check your lease first that you can do this,erecting one may be in breach of either yours or your LL's lease.

    of course you could end up with the management company putting up notices saying parking is at your own risk for all leaseholders and tenants...just like Tescos do I believe
    Last edited by need an answer; 08-07-2018 at 8:08 PM.
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    • BanjoBob
    • By BanjoBob 8th Jul 18, 8:37 PM
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    BanjoBob
    Sorry you seem to take issue with my response but the management company will have little or no dealings with tenants.
    Originally posted by need an answer
    No issue taken with your response at all (sorry if it read that way), and thank you for providing your view!
    I guess my q is if you parked in Tesco whos responsibility would you expect the repair to fall on
    Originally posted by need an answer
    I suppose that depends on the situation - but if i parked in Tesco and there were similar spaces with windows directly above them, i'd naturally avoid using those spaces and park in a different spot (I'd have done that even before this happened at my flat... I didn't like the looks of the flat space when i found out which is was after i moved in, but couldn't do anything to change it at that time and figured nothing would happen).


    Agree with you re: gazebo - the idea wasn't meant to be too serious (hence my smiley use - perhaps I'm not used to forum etiquette yet), as i imagine you're right, i would probably be breaching something.
    • need an answer
    • By need an answer 8th Jul 18, 8:48 PM
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    need an answer
    I do feel that a constructive polite conversation with your LL might be in order.

    You cant get them to pay but you may get them to see the implications you point out and then they can take the issue forward with the management company

    As I said earlier a lot depends on how proactive your LL is and in turn whether the management company are prepared to look at solutions or just put up notices that shift responsibility to the users of the parking spaces within the compound.
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    • sevenhills
    • By sevenhills 8th Jul 18, 9:00 PM
    • 1,331 Posts
    • 492 Thanks
    sevenhills
    I do feel that a constructive polite conversation with your LL might be in order.
    Originally posted by need an answer

    I have not seen the layout of the flats in question; but I cannot see why a landlord would be responsible for "an ornament has fallen out of one of the flat window".
    It would be the responsibility of the tenant that put the ornament on the window, and over the edge.

    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 8th Jul 18, 9:07 PM
    • 1,936 Posts
    • 2,593 Thanks
    NeilCr
    If you mean the owner of another flat who drops something out the window, then i didn't explain how the windows open fully outwards from bottom to top (i.e. hinged at the top), with the bottom part of the window frame that sits between the window ledge and the outside world being only about 1.5cm tall. I never put anything on our ledge by the window as it really seems like basic common sense not to - a light breeze would even blow things out as the frame would only stop something the size of a marble.
    Originally posted by chris_bl
    Nor would I. And, if I did leave something there I'd accept the responsibility as the flat owner/tenant did in this case.

    As you say it's basic common sense. I can't see how this is down to the ManCo. They didn't build the flats nor did they place the parking spaces. It's clearly down to the flat owner/tenant who did, something, not very sensible. ManCo can't legislate/insure for that.

    We have pretty much the same set up. We have one space per flat/house so someone is always going to have a parking space under (in our case) a house window. As a director if something happened emanating from the house on to the parking space I'd be looking directly at that house owner.
    • BanjoBob
    • By BanjoBob 8th Jul 18, 9:15 PM
    • 12 Posts
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    BanjoBob
    Nor would I. And, if I did leave something there I'd accept the responsibility as the flat owner/tenant did in this case.

    As you say it's basic common sense. I can't see how this is down to the ManCo. They didn't build the flats nor did they place the parking spaces. It's clearly down to the flat owner/tenant who did, something, not very sensible. ManCo can't legislate/insure for that.

    We have pretty much the same set up. We have one space per flat/house so someone is always going to have a parking space under (in our case) a house window. As a director if something happened emanating from the house on to the parking space I'd be looking directly at that house owner.
    Originally posted by NeilCr
    I agree with this, but my concern is that in my case there are maybe 6 or 7 floors of windows above, so if it happened again, it could be that no one comes forward and that I couldn't determine who did it.

    There was another point mentioned about a dash cam, which although it could work, perhaps it wouldn't be triggered or night time might result in nothing being picked up.

    I probably am going to try and find a way to park somewhere else as the best option to eliminate the risk, but i was interested if there was any consensus that ManCo should be responsible in some way for a solution.. it was perhaps a stretch!
    • davidmcn
    • By davidmcn 8th Jul 18, 9:52 PM
    • 8,026 Posts
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    davidmcn
    i was interested if there was any consensus that ManCo should be responsible in some way for a solution.. it was perhaps a stretch!
    Originally posted by chris_bl
    I'll just join in with the chorus that they don't have any responsibility - it's the fault of whoever put the ornament in a stupid place (who may of course have insurance covering them against claims by you).
    Last edited by davidmcn; 09-07-2018 at 9:10 AM.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 8th Jul 18, 10:22 PM
    • 17,784 Posts
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    AdrianC
    My questions are:
    - Should the flat building management company have insurance to cover such costs?
    Originally posted by chris_bl
    No, but the flat's leaseholder probably should.


    - I have raised this problem to them and asked them to resolve (though I am ignored so far) - should this make them responsible (or even liable) for any future issues now that I have raised the situation?
    What on earth do you want them to do? Superglue that flat's windows closed?


    - Since I rent the apartment with a space, should the landlord do something or have some future responsibility?
    No.
    • need an answer
    • By need an answer 9th Jul 18, 8:45 AM
    • 786 Posts
    • 942 Thanks
    need an answer
    I have not seen the layout of the flats in question; but I cannot see why a landlord would be responsible for "an ornament has fallen out of one of the flat window".
    It would be the responsibility of the tenant that put the ornament on the window, and over the edge.
    Originally posted by sevenhills
    There was nothing in any of my replies that suggested the LL of the property would be responsible for the ornament or indeed anything falling from a neighbouring flat.

    BUT the LL is the owner of a property within a complex that is rented to a tenant who has had damage caused by a situation.

    if THE LL who is a leaseholder wants to bring up the fact to the management company and or indeed his fellow leaseholders he/she is perfectly entitled to. Not I agree with a view to obtaining any compensation or seeking any responsibility from the management company but simply to advise them that there is the potential for this to be classed as a risk.


    It may have been pointed out on a risk assessment report previously but its unlikely.although not every risk assessments is mentioned in a report its a good starting point for management companies to act on going forward and it would be something that if bought up at for example the AGM would become documented as a point for discussion going forward.

    I understand that a risk assessment should be carried out by the management company every 2 years so the OP COULD be able to ask his LL if any such matter was picked up previously in the most recent reports.

    The management company may be very receptive and look at prevention in the form of netting or whatever or they could as I said earlier just put up signs saying parking is at your own risk.

    The purpose of management funds held by the management company is never to provide compensation for damage it is to provide maintenance throughout the complex.

    Netting could be seen as maintenance and prevention but if it is responsibility and compensation the OP is seeking it would not come from the management sinking funds.

    That is why I still think that a polite chat with the LL may be in order for the OP going forward.
    Last edited by need an answer; 09-07-2018 at 8:51 AM.
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    • steampowered
    • By steampowered 9th Jul 18, 9:15 AM
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    steampowered
    Unfortunately there is a risk of a car getting damaged no matter where you park. That's just part of life.

    A tree might fall down onto your car. Or the car parked next to you might hit your wing mirrors on the way out.

    The ManCo might be liable if they were aware of the risk and there was an easy fix they failed to carry out. But in this situation I don't see what the fix could be. The ManCo can't force people to glue their windows shut.

    Its just part of life unfortunately. If you can identify the culprit that's great, but otherwise you have to claim against your own insurance.

    This sounds like a scenario which is very unlikely to repeat, so I think you shouldn't worry about it.
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