Apartment Residents Left With £419 Million Repair Bill After Extensive Water Damage

December 02, 2010 (PRLEAP.COM) Lifestyle News
It might be a small leak, but in reality, leaking water pipes cause billions of pounds of damage to flats and apartments because they're not repaired, according to new research* performed by HomeServe.

The home emergency and maintenance company reveals that, in the last five years, approximately 1.67 million people have witnessed leaks from their flats cause damage to a neighbouring property or vice versa.

HomeServe estimates the average repair costs for water damage per flat is around £1,933, which translates to £419 million annually and a whopping £2.09 billion in leak repairs in the last 5 years.

The research study also indicates leaking pipes, washing machines and toilets are the most frequent causes of water damage to neighbouring properties. The water from a leaking pipe or flooded bathroom soaks through the floor. Then, it exits through the ceiling in adjoining properties.

HomeServe says as many as 100,000 people have lived with a leaking toilet or cistern for a year or longer. In addition to the damage is the waste of water. A dripping tap wastes approximately 140 litres every week. Multiply this by the 1.1 million Britons who have had this problem in the last year, and the amount of water wasted needlessly is devastating.

"If they're not fixed promptly by a professional, even a tiny water leak can cause thousands of pounds in damage. Often times, the leak is in an innocuous or hidden spot, which means they are left unresolved for an extensive period of time and cause severe damages," said Jon Florsheim, CEO of HomeServe Membership.

The research also revealed that 220,000 flat owners have had to pay between £2,500 and £25,000 in the past five years in order to fix water damage caused by leaks. HomeServe states that the recession has forced many families with strained budgets to put off these vital repairs. For these families, a large repair bill could be devastating for them.

"Leaking pipes can cause a lot of damage and cost large sums of money to repair if the leaks aren't caught early enough. Families need to be diligent even now. If these leaks are ignored, the water will cause damp, rot floor boards, weaken and rot floor joists, and compromise electrical systems, to name a few," continued Florsheim.

The Apartments and Flats product offered by HomeServe gives homeowners living in flats an effective way to deal with household emergencies. Homeowners receive emergency services for plumbing and drainage problems as well as boiler, electrical, and central heating problems. In addition, HomeServe's product includes glazing and lock emergencies.

Notes to editors:

* ICM interviewed a random sample of 2014 adults aged 18+ online between 24th 26th July 2009. Surveys were conducted across the country and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. Further information at www.icmresearch.co.uk

About HomeServe

HomeServe, www.homeserve.com or 0800 293031 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Every 40 seconds a HomeServe engineer comes to the rescue of a British household.

With over 4,600 directly employed and sub-contracted engineers, HomeServe is a national emergency home repair service backed by a 24 hour claims handling and repair network. HomeServe's new tradesmen service provides households with access to more than 22 trades who are qualified to carry out more than 500 different jobs around the home HomeServe tradesmen are guaranteed to turn up on time, to hold the necessary qualifications to do the job at hand, to provide a price before they start the job and will even guarantee their work for a 12 month period afterwards.

HomeServe also offers insurance cover for plumbing, drains, electrical wiring and gas central heating. It has over 6.3 million policy members in the UK and a further 1.8 million in the USA, France and Spain and the US.