Am I as the owner responsible for the cost of interior damages as result of improper roof installation?

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Am I as the owner responsible for the cost of interior damages as result of improper roof installation?

I own and live in a townhouse which has HOA. In September, 2018 I had a rain leak into the interior of my home as a result of roof repairers contracted by the HOA. The first contracted roofers were in the progress of replacing the roof on my unit when it began to rain. They left for the evening without properly securing the area to prevent the rain from entering my home. I reported this to the HOA management at that time no actions were taken to address the interior leak. Additionally, this month in early May, 2019 there were more roof repairs contracted by the association. As a result I have had more interior rain damage. This work is being done by a different roofing company. I was told both leaks were caused by the previous installation completed by the first contract roofing company. Both companies were selected by the HOA board. As part of the HOA agreement there is a Maintenance Responsibility Chart which addresses parties responsibilities. The HOA management is citing the following. Component of Property Townhome interiors, incl, improvements, fixtures, partition walls floors within townhome Area of Common Responsibility Non Owner Responsibility All aspects. The subject of negligence is not addressed. The rain entering my home causing interior damages to my home were as a result of poor exterior roof work, not repair and maintenance needed as a result of wear and tear over time.

Asked on May 30, 2019 under Real Estate Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

If the roofer is an independent business (i.e. not employees of the HOA), then you would have to initially pay for your interior damage, as per the HOA agreement (or put a claim in to your own insurer), but could sue the roofer for compensation (e.g. to reimburse your damages and costs). The HOA is not directly responsible for the negligence of an outside contractor or busines they hired, any more than you would be liable if you owned a single family home, hired a tree trimmer, and the trimmer negligently dropped the tree on a neighbor's garage. In both cases, it is the negligent outside business which can be sued and held liable.


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