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Manhattanpro…, Home Owner in Manor Park, NY

Re: a co-op bldg in NYC, a toilet backed up & flooded the unit below. The unit causing the damage - no insurance. Is the co-op insurance?

Asked by Manhattanpropmgr, Manor Park, NY Thu Jan 20, 2011


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Voices Member’s answer
In 90% of co-ops the co-op's insurance only covers incidents originating from and/or affecting - the common elements of the building. Assuming both of the units involved in this leak belong to individual owners - and assuming the toilet back-up was caused within the privately held space - the co-op's insurance would not apply. It may apply if the back-up was caused by defects in the common area plumbing.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 21, 2011
It depends if the unit is owned or if it a sponsor unit.
owned the sharehold is responsible if they have changed the toilets if not then
i believe the bldg is it depends also what the by laws of the co op states.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 21, 2011
I am on the Board of Directors of my co-op, and I agree with the others. Most likely the co-op insurance won't cover the damage unless there was some plumbing issue in the walls that caused the backup, rather than a faulty toilet which is the unit owner's responsibility. So someone, like the plumber, would have to determine that.

Then it is best to contact your management company if you have one, or read the proprietary lease if self-managed, to see who is responsible. Generally if in the walls, it is the co-op, if inside, it is the unit owners.

Also, contacting the co-op insurance company won't hurt either.

Lastly, the owner of the damaged unit should at least notify their insurance company of the damage. They usually will pay the unit owner for damages and then fight it out with the other insurance company, in this case, the co-op's insurance company, to get reimbursement.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 21, 2011
Like others have mentioned, the coop has a master policy, which generally covers the common elements & may or mat not cover plumbing inside the walls of each unit. You have to verify with management &/or read the policy for yourself. If the policy covers all plumbing, my guess is the board will want to investigate the cause of the leak & determine who is responsible for the damaged unit. I would also go as far as declarin that I almost 100% sure the coop policy doesn't cover personal items. Review the policy & let us know..it would be helpful for all of us. Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 20, 2011
Even if the problem is the co-op's problem, it will depend on what the damage is. A past client of mine called me to ask about this. They were not required by the bank or the co-op to get their own insurance. They replaced their kitchen after they purchased the co-op, so the master policy did not cover the damage to the cabinets.
If you are talking about damage to your personal belongings, that would only be covered if you had your own policy. you would have that just like you would have a renter's policy if you are a renter. Requiring a "walls in" policy might be coming soon, as it recently became a requirement of those getting loans to buy condos.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 20, 2011
For an accurate answer check with management--generally if the problem is related to the building's main plumbing, thus creating the back up, the co-op is responsible for any plumbing repairs--as for the damage incurred in the unit(s) much will depend on the co-op's insurance policy and any private homeowner's insurance--again check with management for an accurate answer....
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 20, 2011
The coop has a master policy. It may or may not cover individual units and /or damages that unit causes in other units. It depends on the cause of the backed up toilet.

Is it the coop's plumbing that caused the backed toilet or did the share holder flush something down the toilet. Most coops recommend or require the share holder to have home owner's insurance for this reason. Home owner's insurance will cover it. Coop's master insurance probably not. They may fix the plumbing but they probably will not pay for the damages in the unit below.

Contact the super, building manager or managing agent to find out.
Web Reference: http://nycblogestate.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 20, 2011
Mitchell Hall, Real Estate Pro in New York, NY
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