Explosion in rental flat, no Hausratversicherung

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Hi, Our flat exploded on wens the 6th feb,

 

News Article, With a Picture

 

our ground floor flat is burned out from back to front, there was a huge explosion in our living room, big enough to put a rip around the whole house when it lifted the next one and a half floors above us, and put rips in pritty much every corner of every room of the flat above us, Luckly our 15yr old daugter was in the bath at the time and was able to escape out the window, and me and my partner were not home at the time, The dog and 2 cats wernt so lucky =( Unfortunatly we dont have any contents insurance, until now the police still havnt found the cause, we had nothing in our flat that could explode with that much force, no gas cylinder fires, and no gas in our flat whatsoever other than a butane lighter refill, that was in the last room to catch fire, so were 100% sure were not to blame for the explosion, the only gas pipe in the hause goes into the basement and direct to the boiler, and thats been ruled out as a cause, we suspect something came in through the kitchen sink as it often stunk out of there as when someone in the flat above us flushed the toilet or emptyed the bath or something, it would pull the water out the u bend and make a gurgling sound, and then generaly stink the kitchen out untill someone ran the tap to refill the ubend, and our daughter said it smelt funny in the flat when she came in but didnt think much more than that mums been burning some horrible new insence sticks or just not really surprised as it stick sometimes in the kitchen because of formentioned problem anyway, sooooo, bringing me to my question... if it turns out that there was something wrong with the house, that caused our flat to explode, will the renters insurance have to cover our belongings too? if you need any further information to help answer my question, ill be looking by here often to answer them,

 

Many many thanks

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That´s awful, Nick...sorry to hear that.

 

Just one point: your title says " NO Hausratversicherung " but your post asks about renter´s insurance ( American term for Hausratversicherung or do you mean the owner´s insurance? ). If you have it, it certainly should pay 100% of the damage, maximum the sum you´re insured for.

 

Do you have it or not???

 

If the damage was caused externally - from another part of the building for any reason, then either the owner´s insurance or a neighbour´s liability insurance would likely be responsible for compensation.

 

EDIT: ah yes, Rob. I´ve reread the post.

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I haven´t got a clue about the insurance issue, but having just read the story you linked to, I am so happy for you that your daughter survived.

At the end of the day you might well have lost all of your possessions, but you still have each other!

 

@ John, I took that to mean the insurance of the people upstairs...

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If it can be proven that your landlord or landlay at fault is then yes otherwise no.But as it says in the newpaper article they will find out what happened

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Joining in with a bang, he :)

 

To the point : wait for the forensic decision, then you have a chance to claim something.

Luckily it did not further impact you than what happened to materials and pets (it's sad enough already...) but realistically you have little chance to get the insurance to pay. New beginning?

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hi, thanks for all the replys so far, the people "upstairs" are the landlords, sorry for saying renters, Vermieter is what i meant, meaning landlord, been in germany to long, cant remember english lol, and to clear up the other question, we have no insurance, but they do as landlords obviosly, of course they will find out what happend "i hope" "there sure taking there sweet time about it", but like i said, we definatly had nothing in the flat that could cause such an explosion, of course were all really happy that no person died, as could very easily have been, but we want to start picking up the pieces now, and my biggest question after wanting to know what happend is wanting to know if were somehow covered if it was out of our control, not down to anything we did or had.

 

Thanks for all the kind words also, will keep checking back.

 

Nick.

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If someone else is deemed liable - i.e. responsible - for the explosion, then they (or their insurance) will have to cover the damages. If not, I'm afraid the landlord's Wohngebäudeversicherung (building insurance) will not cover the contents of your home (or theirs, for that matter). That's what the Hausratsversicherung (renter's insurance) is for.

 

Good luck.

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Yes, that´s right, El Jeffo. Mind you, if the landlord is to blame for any reason, he/should have a Vermieter-Haftpflicht insurance, which could then step in.

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Mind :

 

Aerosol spray cans are usually filled with either butane or propane as propellant . And since every household has more or less of them stored somewhere (often under the sink) there is always a high risk of an explosion when a fire breaks out for whatever reason or when leaking gas gets in contact with an electric spark.

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Welcome to Toytown, Nick_W, although I wish your reasons for joining had been happier ones.

 

If, as your post suggests, the explosion turns out, according to the findings of the investigating experts, to have been caused by a major release of built-up methane gas from the sewage system, (an unusual, but not unknown, occurrence), then there's possibly a chance of recovering a large portion of your verifiable material losses from the utility company responsible for the system's maintenance. That may be the city, the regional water authority, or a subcontracting commercial company. I'm pretty sure that each, and any, of these entities would have significant amounts of all-risks insurance coverage to take care of collateral losses to victims of such events.

 

I would recommend you start to look for a specialist lawyer (Fachanwalt) who has a good record of dealing with such cases as you may well need to have one with the patience of Job, the wisdom of Solomon and the aggressiveness of a pitbull terrier. If you have legal insurance (Rechtschutz-versicherung) then you may already be in a position to seek initial advice in an introductory interview. If not, and your financial circumstances are limited, then you could possibly apply to your local Amtsgericht (they have specialist paralegals who deal with these matters) for at least a voucher to cover a first consultation. I can't think of which technical specialty (Schwerpunkt) would be the most apt for such a case, but if you keep checking back I'm sure PandaMunich, or one of the other well informed TTers, will come up with the right idea soon.

 

2B

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the somekind of gas coming through the waste water system "only our speculation" but our biggest one, if that was the case, would the plumber of the waste water system be liable for bad instalation, or someone else for there being gas in that system, our other idea is that maybe there was gas in the chimney, maybe the boiler went out but gas kept running through, then made its way out the firestove we had in the living room that hadnt been lit for nearly a year, we really doubt that someone through a bomb in for some reason, and that our daguhter spelt a strong smell when she came in makes us convinced it was some kind of gas, if anyone could shed light on the possibility of any of those ideas or have there own, id be really interested, were all pritty stumped as to how this happend, im just certain that it wasnt anything we had that exploded, i know we have to wait to find out what the police say before we can really do anything insurance claiming wise, but no matter how often people say be patient, dosnt stop you thinking about it, and not understanding alot of the new words you have never heard people saying before when trying to overhear what people are talking about between another makes me feel like im only understanding half of the way things work here, even tho my otherhalf does a very good job trying to make sure i understand things, god bless her, lived in germany for just over a year now fyi, but have visited here nearly every year for two weeks since i was born, so did come with some basic german, but you can only learn so much in a year so this last week and a half have really been making me make use of what i have learned so far. any ideas, questions, please say/ask, have looked through these forums often in the last year for information, ashamed its taken this to get me to join in with you peeps on the forums.

 

Thanks

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Excellent points by 2B.

 

Just a thought: is your place actually habitable at all? I don´t know where you´d ask but do you need emergency accommodation?

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2bornot2b, its like you knew what i was going to ask next, thanks. sounds like good advice, unfortunatly, Rechtschutz-versicherung, is another new word for me, but as soon as we find a new place to live, hausratsversicherung and haplichversicherung are on the immidiate list of things to do

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I hope you´re at least health insured already, Nick! :D Sorry, mate..couldn´t resist!

You sound remarkably calm and phlegmatic after what you´ve been through - my admiration.

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we are being put up in the basement of family, its comfortable enough till we can find another place, and there being great hosts, weve had so much great help with offers of things for our next flat, and cash donations from friends and family and complete strangers, people here are unbelivably nice, im sure even if we dont get anything from insurance things will be okay, but it would be nice to be able to replace most of the things we lost in one swoop without having to save for them all over again, if it can be proven that someone is to blame or has responcibility, were so sure that it cant have been our fault, even if all hairspray and deo and paint and everything like that we had was in a pile on fire, it couldnt explode with that much force, the rolladen, window rollers, from the terrace window in the living room were found 8-10meters away in the neighbors garden, and theres glass and plastic shrapnel in the fence 6 meters away from the terrace window that blew completley out, thats one hell of a explotion, the whole house shook violently and it was heard from over 3km away, its completly unbelivable really

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i DO have krankenkasse versicherung with AOK! =) so im not a complete depp, just half of one i guess

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Thanks john, im still in abit of shock tbh, it is getting better though, i started a new job today so was able to take my mind off things for a while

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You mention that you had a gas fire or boiler in the living room...

 

What sort was it? Did you supply it or is it part of the rented prpoerty?

 

If it was part of the property, when did the Landlord last have it inspected?

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If the insurance of the landlord pays for it, I don't think it'll happen fast, unfortunately.

 

Even if you had had your own insurance, you might now be arguing with them if they should pay because they would probably try to pin it on the landlord, whose insurance would try to pin it back on yours.

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sorry, it was a wood stove, not lit for nearly a year, the gas line goes only from outside into the basement, then into the boiler which is also in the basement and gas pipes go nowhere else in the house

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