Friday, June 09, 2006

Fire Sale

My clients just closed today on a terrific two bedroom (plus huge... I mean huge library/ den), two bath penthouse condo. The place has the most magnificent terrace AND rooftop deck I have seen in Ravenswood… in fact, the unit is the entire top floor of a five unit building. It was a great find and very unique place.

But yesterday, we show up for the final walk through and were treated to a little barbeque. Not the good kind with a few beers and a couple shrimp on the “barby”, but a torched deck railing. It seems the downstairs neighbor’s satellite dish wire was attached to his deck railing and shorted out… causing it to burn his railing off the deck!

Fortunately, this did not affect my client’s master bedroom deck that hangs over the bon-fire below… but it could have big time! It was also determined that, due to owner negligence, there would be no claim to the building insurance for the damage. So, my clients don’t take a hit in that sense.

Let’s think about this. Let’s say we come for the final walk through Thursday night (with a closing scheduled for the next day) and my client’s deck has burnt down?? Whose responsibility is it? Do my clients have to close? Is the damage covered by the common insurance policy for the building and will there be a claim on the insurance? Because remember, the deck is a limited common area. Or, because it was caused by the neighbor, does the neighbor’s homeowners insurance cover it?

Let’s say it was an act of God or Mother Nature…. Do the seller’s have to remedy the situation before the closing?

Let’s just hope your agent and your attorney has their respective "stuff" together.

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