Home Structural Insurance - Remediation Plan

Discussion in 'Insurance not covered in other forums' started by littlefinger, Dec 19, 2016.

  1. littlefinger

    littlefinger New Member

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    8
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2016
    I've posted this under 'Home insurance' section as that's the nearest relevant category I could find. However, this relates to 'structural insurance/guarantee' such as that provided by the likes of Homebond, etc.

    I've spent the last year fighting my corner with one of these guys. They've ultimately admitted liability and presented an outline remediation plan - and asked me to approve same.

    I've written to them and put several queries to them on the remediation plan. These are simple questions - but very relevant and pertinent questions. We've been round the houses with this - and they refuse to answer those questions (or say they will only discuss with my engineer).

    This is coming to a head - and they maintain that's their position (i.e. that they've dealt with my queries) - end of. I think my queries are more than reasonable - and I can't make a decision on what they've proposed without answers to same. They maintain that my questions are not relevant! or that they have answered them (by answering them, their answer is - will only discuss in a site meeting with an engineer. If I need to discuss the answers they come back to me with - with an engineer, surely it's my own business if I decide to do so?).

    Does anyone have any experience in this area? Is there a regulator I can lodge a complaint with?
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2016
  2. Leo

    Leo Moderator

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    7,959
    What does your engineer have to say about your queries and their response?

    From the threads I've read here and elsewhere over the years, you've done well to get this far!
     
  3. littlefinger

    littlefinger New Member

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    8
    Well, it's a public forum - so I don't want to go into too much detail. However, with a lot of feet dragging, I eventually got the cooperation of my engineer in order to achieve admission of a certain level of liability (I'm not one for giving up easy). I have my own theories as to what was at play here. With my claim proven to this stage, I am no longer relying upon his technical expertise. I have engaged another engineer. However, I don't want that engineer to be brought into the process - unless absolutely necessary. i.e. I don't want the insurer (and those that are acting for them - to know whom I currently retain for such advice).

    Having said all that, he is of the opinion that the queries I have are highly relevant. If answered genuinely, they either call into question the remediation plan that has been suggested OR copper fasten my position were I to run with their proposal - and should there be a future re-occurrence of the problem.

    No doubt Leo - it's taken perseverence to get this far - everything you've heard in this respect with regard to structural insurers is 100% well founded i.e. will put up the staunchest of defenses in their avoidance of paying out. I know that's the case with the insurance industry generally - but these guys take it to a new level. Secondly, having gotten to the position of an admission of liability, the next hurdle is getting a proper, rightful proposal out of them - not one that results in the minimum possible expense for them - and may leave me in exactly the same position a couple of years down the road...at which stage, their intention is to have washed their hands of it.
     
  4. littlefinger

    littlefinger New Member

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    8
    Just an update on this. I've spent an age trading correspondence back and forth with the insurer. They dismissed the alternative proposal that I put forward. I then reverted to consideration of the remediation plan that they came back with. I've asked queries on same before I will commit to signing off on that plan.

    Key amongst those are the following;

    1. I've asked them to confirm if the outer (render) layer will be impermeable to water ingress. They repeatedly avoided answering the question claiming relevance (!) - but now, they have come back with the following;

    "With full fill cavities, there are many capillary tracks available for moisture to pass into the property. Accordingly it is imperative that the exterior rendering is watertight and maintained that way by the property owner throughout its service life. Our proposed external render system is the best and most appropriate for this dwelling. Lack of maintenance is exacerbating this situation."

    They accepted liability in the first instance without a mere mention of 'lack of maintenance'. They started down this track AFTER the fact (once I went down the road of insisting that they answer the queries I put to them so that I could make an informed decision on their remediation plan). I clarified at that stage that due to the unusual nature of the cracks, I wasn't going to simply fill them in - until I could ascertain the nature of the defect. I outlined that others in the estate had done this and repainted also - only for the same horizontal cracks to re-emerge.

    Furthermore, to my assertion that in addition that water is being carried across the cavity via the bonded bead cavity infill, I'm also claiming that this is also the case when it comes to what have been found to be improperly positioned (sloped inwards to carry water inwards) mortar snotted wall ties....(this was pointed out to them on-site by the engineer that I had engaged at that time - but they continually refuse to acknowledge this - even though I have an audio record of everything that was stated at that site meeting) to which their answer is this;

    "With full fill cavities, there are many capillary tracks available for moisture to pass into the property. Any argument in regard to the passage of water along a wall tie is immaterial to the overall construction of this dwelling. "

    I want to sanity check the position I'm taking as opposed their position. Am I being unreasonable in what I claim?


    What the hell do you have to do in Ireland to get an honest/fair/reasonable outcome from an insurer!? :-(