Cavity Wall Insulation Claims - what are they?
Energy suppliers have been given targets by the Government to insulate homes & if they miss these targets then the energy regulator (Ofgen) can fine them. This has no doubt increased the pressure on them to insulate as many home as possible but this has resulted all too often in sub standard work being carried out. Those who have been the victims of shoddy workmanship are often left living in homes riddled with damp while they suffer a variety of respiratory illnesses.
However, although cavity wall insulation ("CWI") follows Government policy it is neither controlled not supervised by them. Accordingly, when things go wrong, the Government denies responsibility. Another issue to consider is the Guarantees often issued by the Cavity Wall Insulation Guarantee Agency ("CIGA") for 25 years - salesmen often describe these as "Government Guarantees" - they are not! CIGA is not independent of the insulation industry. Sime Guarantees we have seen do not even extend to
- defective workmanship
- defects arising as a result of not maintaining the property
Are you an owner occupier or landlord?
The first thing you need to be aware of if you are the landlird of a property where CWI has been carried out is that you owe your tenant a statutory duty to remedy any disrepair. You, in turn, might have a claim against those responsible for the products used or, for the workmanship carried out. If you can show that the material used was defective or of poor quality & the cause of the dampness then you might have a claim against the company who supplied those materials & possibly against any company who subcontracted the work to them.
If you signed a contract with a company in relation to the CWI that would be a starting point when considering if you had a claim failing which you would need to establish whether they were in breach of the duty of care they owed you. Either way we can advise you.
So what should you look out for?
Brick & render properties
These are just some of the things our appointed surveyor would be looking out for:
- if the property was already insulated, the drill pattern
- frost damaged brickwork
- loose pointing & areas not pointed
- porous brickwork
- damp proof course not visible
- have breather vents been installed or blocked up? air vents busied
- leaking gutters
Properties with external wall insulation
- staining showing on the external render surface
- discolouration of the external render
- mould growth
Things to look out for on internal surfaces
- damaged plaster
- damaged floorboards, skirting boards or architraves
- damaged electrical work
We will instruct an expert for you
Expert evidence will be required to establish
- the condition of the property
- the cause of it
- what repair work is required
- how long the work will take
- what the work will cost
- whether everyone will need to move out while the work is carried out
- whether the value of the property has been reduced
Medical evidence may be required
If you or your family have become ill as a result of the condition of the property we will refer you to a medical expert specialising in respiratory illnesses.
It is important that you & every member of your family who is ill is seen by your GP as soon as possible. Try & show the GP photos of the condition of the property so that he can form a view as to whether that is the cause of the illness. Keep the GP informed as to how your symptoms continue so that we can obtain a full history.
What should you do now?
Call us on 0800 195 7517 or send us a message via this website.
You will have a specialist team working for you with expertise in delaing with these claims.