Townhouse damaged in fire that started next door

Discussion in 'Repairs & Maintenance' started by Firsthomie, 15th May, 2018.

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  1. Firsthomie

    Firsthomie Member

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    My PPR which is townhouse part of complex of 7 was damaged in fire in Feb. It is a new complex which is only 8 months old. The reason for the start of the fire was the tenant in the next unit deliberately lit the fire to self harm. The fire spread through the roof and all the interior walls and rof along with the appliances need to be replaced. this is being covered through the strata insurance.

    The question I have is, since i did not have contents insurance who will be liable to replace the floating floorboard, carpets and blinds?

    I know from my reserch, the above items are considered removable and not covered by building insurance in the normal scenario. I am hoping in my case beacause the fire started outside my unit and I was no way in control of what was happening, I can claim these items.

    I would like to hear everyones thoughts on this.
     
  2. Retirenow

    Retirenow Member

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    I’d be thinking it’s your cost to cover. Should have contents insurance. Expensive lesson.
     
    housechopper2 likes this.
  3. Stoffo

    Stoffo Well-Known Member

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    Bugger
    You could take legal action against the individual, considering it was a willfull/deliberate act. @Terry_w

    My question is was their unit also repaired under insurance (as this is often voided when deemed deliberate).

    Have you been rehoused during this time, your strata fee's covered for the time unable to occupy......
    I'd be arguing the point also given the fact the unit is only 8 months old !
     
  4. Firsthomie

    Firsthomie Member

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    The unit next door was rented out. The tenant is the one who is responsible for damage. The insurance company is paying for rebuilding both the units. I dont think i will have much hope with legal action against the culprit as the police told me he was sent to mental rehab and he is out now.

    Another ray of hope is the builder themselves as the initial investigation report says the fire safe wall is not upto legislation and this caused the fire to spread to my unit.

    I am not sure how to go about this as this is the first time i have bought a property.
     
  5. hobartchic

    hobartchic Well-Known Member

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    The tenant wilfully hurt themselves, it would be a stretch to say that further unintended damage was wilful in my opinion.

    Hopefully the fire wall can be fixed.

    As for the fixtures, talk to the insurer and see what they say. It sounds like you were not covered.

    You could engage a lawyer but I'm not sure it's worth the cost, or likely loss of claim. I would get contents insurance for future.
     
  6. Firsthomie

    Firsthomie Member

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    My point about the fire safe wall is, if the wall was constructed according to legislation then damage to my unit wound not have occured. Maybe i have to take the case to VCAT.
     
  7. bunkai

    bunkai Well-Known Member

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    Generally, in my experience, you would be covered under lot owners fixtures and improvements - if you have strata insurance.

    However - my strata manager changed our policy last year to a cheaper one without approval. But it is the same they say ... Except the million less coverage ;) pays to read the fine print.
     
  8. Joynz

    Joynz Well-Known Member

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    If you don't mind me asking, why didn't you get contents insurance?
     
  9. Firsthomie

    Firsthomie Member

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    I enquired about getting insurance online. But selected building and contents insurance. All my searches came back as cannot insure this property. Obviously because its a townhouse i cannot go with my own choice of building insurance. I didnt know that beforehand and in the process missed taking contents insurance.
     
  10. Paul@PAS

    Paul@PAS Tax, Accounting + SMSF + All things Property Tax Business Plus Member

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    Fire walls do nothing to smoke or fire brigade deluge. And them using a cutter on your garage doors etc
     
  11. Paul@PAS

    Paul@PAS Tax, Accounting + SMSF + All things Property Tax Business Plus Member

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    Many owners cheap out and think the strata insurance covers them. They can be well out of pocket. Your property includes your contents as well strata assets
     
    Marg4000 likes this.
  12. Firsthomie

    Firsthomie Member

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    Ok so i just got the good news, looks like the timber flooring and carpets are getting replaced under the strata insurance. There is additional work being done to the fire wall. All up $220k and excess i have to pay is $250. So the only thing I am out of pocket will be the blinds. Not a bad outcome at all.

    I have one more question...
    The estimated time of completion is Sept, by that time I would have owned the property for 12 months. Does this mean I can then make it my IP without it affecting my FHOG?
     

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