Basement floods?
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Basement floods? (by park place [IL]) Apr 4, 2021 11:39 AM
       Basement floods? (by Robert,OntarioCanada [ON]) Apr 4, 2021 12:22 PM
       Basement floods? (by Hoosier [IN]) Apr 4, 2021 1:43 PM
       Basement floods? (by Smokowna [MD]) Apr 4, 2021 2:06 PM
       Basement floods? (by Vee [OH]) Apr 4, 2021 2:30 PM
       Basement floods? (by WMH [NC]) Apr 4, 2021 4:23 PM
       Basement floods? (by plenty [MO]) Apr 4, 2021 5:13 PM
       Basement floods? (by Small potatoes [NY]) Apr 4, 2021 9:16 PM
       Basement floods? (by Jim [OH]) Apr 6, 2021 11:19 AM
       Basement floods? (by W [CA]) Apr 6, 2021 7:10 PM

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Basement floods? (by park place [IL]) Posted on: Apr 4, 2021 11:39 AM

Wanted to know, what are the landlord's legal responsibilities if they rent a basement apartment out, and it has a chance flooding event?

Either by basement seepage by heavy rain, or (god forbid) the sewer drain backs up, due to a city issue out of control of the person leasing.

Does the landlord then have to put the tenant up at a hotel at their expense for as long as it takes.... can they be sued.... made to buy the tenant all new furniture, etc etc. I can think of a host of things legislators would like to bring down on landlords in such an event.

But it seems as if that were the case, nobody would rent basement apartments ever. Has it ever happened to anyone here, and what transpired?

In Illinois

Basement floods? (by Robert,OntarioCanada [ON]) Posted on: Apr 4, 2021 12:22 PM

More important that basement rental unit conforms to the building and fire codes as here there have many tragic fires where tenants have died in the event of tragic fire no matter what the case was. There must be a one hour fire separation where the heating and hot water system is along proper egress through windows and doors. Insurance will not cover illegal basement apartments here. Flooding can be minimized by install sump pumps along with installing sewer back up valve on drains so sewer back up does not occur. There have been incidents here where tenants did not have proper contents insurance where they came home to find there furniture along with other belongings were a total loss due to a flood. It may cost over $30,000 or more to properly convert a basement to become a legal conforming rental unit where people take chances hoping there is never a tragic fire where insurance company will not insure or allow a claim due to the fact it is illegal rental unit. In the province almost every year there are tragic fires in the illegal apartment in houses where it seems authorities are reluctant to enforce building and fire codes as there severe shortage of rental units in the province of Ontario.

Basement floods? (by Hoosier [IN]) Posted on: Apr 4, 2021 1:43 PM

I don't know the legal answer. We do have some units with basements, but strictly forbid living quarters in them...and it's stated in the lease. Why? Because you are required by code to have proper egress, and ours don't have it.

To address your question though, assuming you DID have egress in a basement unit, I don't see how it would be any different than a main floor unit becoming unlivable for a similar reason such as tornado tears roof off, fire, tree falls on house, etc.

You might check with your insurance agent to see what your policy would cover if anything. Ask them also about renters insurance to see if that would cover it...and if so you could require your tenants to have renters insurance.

Basement floods? (by Smokowna [MD]) Posted on: Apr 4, 2021 2:06 PM

Yes, You could be sued, however you can be sued for anything.

27. All persons and personal property in or on said property shall be at the sole risk and responsibility of Tenant. Landlord shall not be liable for any damage or injury to said persons or personal property arising from the negligence, acts or omission of acts of any persons or entity, or from roof, wall, floor, door, or window water leaks, or from the freezing, bursting, leaking or overflowing of water, steam, sewer, or gas pipes, or from heating or plumbing fixtures, or from electric wires or fixtures, or from or by any other cause whatever, latent or patent. In summary, Landlord shall not be liable for any injury or damage whatever to the person or property of Tenant or any other person or entity in or on said property, and Tenant hereby expressly and without reservation covenants and agrees to save Landlord harmless in all such matters, unless such injury or damage is committed deliberately and with malice by Landlord.

28. Tenant agrees to maintain Tenant/Homeowners liability insurance in the amount not less that $100,000. Such insurance shall include liability related to pets. Tenants shall provide proof of such insurance upon request.

29. BASEMENT AREA. All property stored by tenant in the basement area should be kept off the basement floor. Landlord not to be held responsible for washing machine flooding, heavy rain fall, water heater failure, or dampness in the air should any of the above occur during tenancy.

Basement floods? (by Vee [OH]) Posted on: Apr 4, 2021 2:30 PM

Contact the manager to determine why this might occur, the basement should never be used for habitation - many do not have a window to allow exiting the basement when the stairway is involved with fire. In my double or more places there is a fence that prohibits access beyond the electrical and laundry area, which is at the bottom of the stairs, maybe room for a bicycle but that is all - I rent living spaces not storage lockers.

Basement floods? (by WMH [NC]) Posted on: Apr 4, 2021 4:23 PM

Define Basement Apartment, please.

Basement floods? (by plenty [MO]) Posted on: Apr 4, 2021 5:13 PM

Garden level unit? Basement unit. I have one sentence in my lease right above where they sign.(in bold) THE BASEMENT MAY LEAK. no i would not paid for hotel, they should have renter's insurance.

Basement floods? (by Small potatoes [NY]) Posted on: Apr 4, 2021 9:16 PM

I have a garden level unit that is a 'studio'. I require renters insurance. If your unit is like my actual basement and is airways wet it's prolly not suitable for habitation. In my garden apt I provide the moisture absorbant crystals for 2 spots that can be Damp.

WMH, I believe a habitable below ground unit must have 50% light (windows above grade) w a minimum size req. In nyc developers will dig out the backyard and make the whole rear wall glass.

Basement floods? (by Jim [OH]) Posted on: Apr 6, 2021 11:19 AM

Folks, a basement is a hole in the ground.

Seal the walls and install the pumps. Water seeks it's own level. Ya gotta love water and it's pernicious abilities.

I rent apartments that are above ground which have enough problems of their own.

Basement floods? (by W [CA]) Posted on: Apr 6, 2021 7:10 PM

Heard stories that my grandmother back during the Great Depression had a basement apartment. Whenever the tenant didn't pay the rent, there was a plumbing problem and the basement apartment would flood. For some reason, the deadbeat tenant always moved out quickly, allowing the apartment to be drained and re-rented to a paying tenant . . .

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