Following recent storms, we received calls from many of our clients who wanted to know whether damage to their apartment block is covered by their Strata Insurance policy. A number of these queries related to fallen trees.
Strata insurance policies are designed to provide cover in the event that a tree is blown over during a storm and causes damage to your property.
This cover typically extends to include removal of the tree that caused the damage as well.
In some instances, you will find that trees may have been blown over by the wind without causing damage to property. Even if there is no consequential damage, most policies do include cover for the removal of fallen trees and/or other landscaping costs.
The extent of cover however does vary with each insurer, so please check your policy or contact your broker to be sure.
If a tree is in danger of falling, or there are limbs hanging precariously, a policy will be unlikely to respond – the associated removal costs are considered to be “preventative” as no actual event has occurred. In saying this, all steps must be taken to prevent any damage from occurring – so it is not appropriate to wait for the tree to fall over completely just so the policy will respond!
We have developed a Claims Checklist to assist owners of strata properties. This information will help you to compile the necessary information insurers require to ensure that your claim is processed quickly.
To resolve your claim in the most expeditious manner possible, we recommend:
- DO ask repairers to confirm on their invoice that any damage to property is solely from a single event or involves maintenance.
- DO ensure your property is regularly maintained and that any dangerous or low lying branches or trees are removed.
- DO ensure any maintenance work is carried out by a licensed contractor
If you require further information on your strata policy or have a claims situation that you would like to discuss with us, we encourage you to speak to one of our knowledgeable insurance brokers by calling 1300 424 627.
This insight article is not intended to be personal advice and you should not rely on it as a substitute for any form of personal advice. Please contact Whitbread Associates Pty Ltd ABN 69 005 490 228 Licence Number: 229092 trading as Whitbread Insurance Brokers for further information or refer to our website.