The relocators are spext leak locators. They use special types of devices to listen or inject the nitroogen gas to pinpoint if there is and where is the leak. They are pretty accurate. It happened to me twice, and the leak locator found out the leaks within half and hour each time. Then it was up to the plumber to fix the problems
You might like to give it a try.
Best of luck.
Personal opinion only, should not take it as legal advice
Thanks MartinO and Khon, both very viable and excellent solutions. I have never heard of a 'relocator' before. Without sounding all woo-woo, I wonder if they are some type of water diviner that uses rods?! I will check your suggestions out. Unfortunately MartinO there was no witness to the most recent flooding. My tenant had been away at the time of the rainfall and came home to a flooded unit :( Not good at all! According to the PM (who is not happy at all that I am investigating this issue further), one other unit in the same complex also suffered water damage. They're saying it came into the unit, entrance and exit point unknown. There'so broken windows or anything and doors were locked and closed, but water came in somehow. But definitely NOT through the drain accordin to PM. Am awaiting an email back from the council who is booked to look at the pits and drains on the property to see if they've filled up somehow. Have asked them if there is a cost associated with this but they haven't told me. Better not be! Aside from that I think that I sit here in America thinking that having rental properties in Australia is more trouble than it's worth. What am I paying these people for?? I do thank you all for your help and wise advice and will let you know how I get on if you're interested?
Apart from the builder, you may consider a relocator. the relocator use special equipment to locate broken or leaking pipe, this may be able you to find the real cause.
I had a hot water leaking pipe underground, running the water bill close to empty my pocket. The Water Board even came and looked but could not find the exact fault but could see the water metre running fast. He suggested to get the relocator to pinpoint where the leak was, then it was the plumber who fixed the leaking pipe.
Personal opinion only, should not take it as legal advice
I love that idea! I'll definitely need to consider that :) I had actually been one of the main players to vote the Real Estate Agency into the position of Body Corporate for the complex a year ago, thinking it was a good move as the previous Body Corporate (according to the current one) didn't provide any services as the tenant at the time - MoH - did all the maintenance etc. Am not so sure it was such a good decision now!
I've received communication this morning from the PM that the recent flooding was as a result of a shocking rain/hail storm experienced late December 2011 in Vic. They don't know how all the water managed to get into the unit and flood out all the rooms, but they're just certain it wasn't the drains!
I appreciate that the aftermath of the flooding can be claimed by insurance, but 4 events in less than 2 years? There is something seriously wrong and I'm being charged for plumbers to come out and rectify the drains and the flooding is still occurring?
I thank you all for your advice and am thinking that I need the services of someone who can come out and determine, once and for all, where the water access and exit points are on the property so I can fix the issue. Any suggestions on the type of person for this aside from a plumber?
Due diligence was done prior to the purchase and there was no evidence or mention of this property being prone to flooding in either the contract, building report or conversations with the selling agent when I questioned if there were any reported or known issues with it.
For me the difficulty at this stage is determining the parties responsible for who should be fixing the issue permanently and whether it is the Body Corporate or the Council.
As suggested, I had already started my own investigation into the matter but as both the past and current Body Corporate entities are being very obstinate in providing me with information they hold pertaining to the issue, posted in this forum in the event that someone else has had similar issues and could provide assistance and suggestions.
If you bought a property that is subject to flooding, I believe the onus is on you to ascertain this before you part with your money.
However from your post it appears that perhaps this is a recent issue brought on by a blocked drain. This is not clear from your post, and perhaps it is not clear to anyone, perhaps you should carry out your own investigation, and then present your report to the Body Corporate for rectification.
Normally such situations are covered by insurance, or out of your pocket if no cover is available.
I am NOT a lawyer. Anything said is NOT legal advice.
Please post your legal questions in a forum rather than sending a PM. Thanks.
I also failed to mention/ask whether the Ministry of Housing also has some responsility in this matter for failing to notify the appropriate BC staff about the flooding issue when it initially occured. And would they not also share some culpability/liability in this matter?
My name's Michelle and my issue with a rental unit I own in Melbourne has been dragging on for over a year now, but I believe it stems back much further than this.
My story goes something like this...and it's really long winded so you may want to make a cuppa!
I bought a Melbourne unit in 1995 ish. All the units in the complex at that time were being tenanted by the Ministry of Housing tenants for 8 years. I came in about half way through a 15 year lease, whose option wasn't renewed. So my unit was going to private rental for the first time in late 2010.
When my husband and I went to inspect the unit, following we noticed a strong smell of mould when we walked in the door and that the carpet in the bedroom had been severely water damaged. It was soaking wet. The lino in the adjoining bathroom had lifted completely around the edges.
My PM advised us that mine and next doors unit had been flooded during heavy rain experienced a couple weeks prior. They (the PM/RE) had tried to clean up the water as best they could but never notified me. These PM are also the same people I bought the unit through initially (and ironically are now the Body Corporate of the same complex).
With unit cleaned up, repainted and fixed but with carpet only being carpet cleaned, the unit was leased. A month later, another downfall, another complete flooding of the unit.
After contacting the current BC of the time, they advised that the flooding had something to do with the drain that was outside the unit on the road forcing the water back up through the pipes into my unit and the one beside ours.
After a contracted email exchange between the BC, PM and the Melbourne Council, the Council accepted 'responsibility' and came out to the unit, took out the damaged carpet and replaced it with brand new carpet. The BC at the time advised that the people on site had commented that this hadn't been a single event and that the slab beneath the carpet showed evidence of continual water damage possibly going back years.
This is where it gets interesting also. My PM advised me verbally at this time that when speaking to the BC, that he had been told that the Ministry of Housing had maintained all of the units and their common areas etc, down to the mowing of the gardens, and that the BC whom all the owners were paying money to, didn't do any upkeeping of the complex for the whole 15 year lease term. So if there was any flooding issue during this time, the Ministry had staff simply clean and dry the carpets.
Anyway, back to present time, a short time after another flooding occured. This time I was charged carpet cleaning expenses by my PM. Around this time, my PM were voted in to be the BC of the complex. So not only were they the selling agents for the majority of the units but are also now the PM and BC. My tenants shortly moved out after breaking up and my unit was rented to another party in December 2011.
Then in January this year, I am charged for another carpet cleaning fee due to flooding with my January's rental statement. No advice or information from the PM/BC forthcoming about why or what happened.
When I contacted my PM/BC yesterday to find out what was happening with the BC meetings for which I was receiving no information about, I was advised that the last informal meeting had happened last year and that they had discussed, amongst other things 'The Repair of the sewer which hadn’t been done by the previous manager to stop the flooding'.
When I responded why following these repairs my unit was again flooded and I was charged for clean up of the carpet as recent as January this year, I have not heard anything back.
So my question is - who is reposnsible for the maintainence of the drains between the council and property, and if the property floods as a result of there being an issue with these drains - who pays for the damage and who is responsible for the repairs? I feel that it is a combined BC and Council matter but before I start bringing in the big guns would appreciate your comments on the issue.
Thanks for your time and for bearing with me as this situation is driving me completely bonkers!
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