Leaks, Liabilities, Insurance
Here’s a tale: In one building, someone on the seventh floor put kitty litter in the toilet. As you can imagine, the toilet solidified like concrete, and basically just blew up. The leak traveled vertically down through connected suites. On the second floor, our tenant lost many valuables, including designer clothes. In this instance we settled with her as nicely as possible and within a half-hour had a restoration company in there.

At Downtown Suites we contact emergency restoration as soon as any such incident happens. We understand that with leaks there can be so much humidity with conventional carpets it is necessary to move all furniture out asap, before the moisture gets to the wood and warps it. Even in a concrete building the dampness can cause mould from the absorption of moisture. However, an immediate call to a restoration company can avoid much of the water damage.

Insurance is essential, for tenants and landlords, as well as strata corporations. Recently, insurance has become complicated, as some companies have a cap on the deductable per suite, rather than per occurrence. In the per occurrence scenario, imagine 15 claims at $5000 deductable per claim. This is where the owner’s insurance comes in, paying the deductable if it is a building claim.

Usually, the tenant’s alternate place to stay isn’t covered by that insurance, which is one reason why the tenant would need to have his own. In normal circumstances, the deductable would be the owner’s responsibility, rather than the tenant’s.

Of course, liability is a big issue, and as property managers we help both owners and tenants understand which areas are their responsibilities in such circumstances.

(This is an important Evergreen Resource article, revisited from our archives.)

Our Quick Response Keeps Landlords Happy

Our experienced staff at Downtown Suites ensures that the company responds immediately to all situations requiring attention. With the number of suites we are managing at any time, there are usually many situations to handle throughout a normal working day, more than can be managed by just one property manager.

Just over the weekend, a flood in a neighbour’s suite overflowed into the bedroom of a suite owned by one of our clients. The Building Management is now taking care of drying the area out. The good news for our client is that there doesn’t appear to be any major damage as a result of the flood. Naturally we’ll keep the client posted and up to date on this situation. Once the tenant informed us about the flood, the team went into action, and we took as much information from the tenant as possible. We liaised with the building management and let our clients know about the situation. Our staff is prepared to deal with this and other situations in our clients’ suites. Normally we see innumerable issues per day: quotes for repairs, owner approval for major repairs, ongoing arrangements, emails and requests – not including finding qualified tenants and the issues that arise around moves.

Not only do we have an emergency on-call system, we also have staff to ensure communications and follow-up, so tenants and landlords can all be assured that the situations that arise are dealt with effectively. When things happen over the weekend, or late-night, we are able to assess the situation and act effectively. We always keep owners apprised of anything that requires repair or looking into, or that we’re dealing with, but don’t bother them with anything minor.

We believe that communication is key.
By the way, the owners sent over a note of thanks and appreciation.

(originally posted March 2007)