February 22, 2008 at 2:11 pm #53692
I am asking for assistance in trying to understand the Seguro Decenal.
We are a development of townhouses and are struggling to get the developer to put right faults with our houses. Not enough drainage in the gardens so the houses flood in heavy rain, sewer pipes which do not fall properly allowing sewage to back up and lots more too boring to list.
The builder has finished the second phase of houses which we believe have just as many faults as our properties – drains which have been impacted with earth, major damp problems. The builders will soon be off-site presumably expecting us to rectify the problems by raising the money through the community fees. We are yet to ‘adopt’ this second phase of properties into the community because of this fear of being left to fix everything ourselves.
We know the builder has taken out a Seguro Decenal and know who the policy is with. Can we as owners, call upon this insurance? The builder does not want to do so, and appears to be telling us that he paid the premium so the policy is his! We assume this is because of a high excess which they will have to pay or the inability to get further insurance on future building developments?
Do we need to use a litigation lawyer to initiate the process as it seems an odd way to make an insurance claim!
Thanks in advance, David
February 22, 2008 at 5:36 pm #79018
Unfortunately not many developers inform their clients of what the decennial insurance covers: the structural defects.
The 10 year guarantee, as said, only is applicable to major structural problems, and will not apply to other problems.
The LOE (Law of Constrution) also includes other guarantee periods to cover other issues. All installations are guaranteed for 3 years, and minor defects that have to do with finishes are guaranteed for 1 year.
These periods start when the Notarial deed of sale is signed.
I recommend you send them a certified letter through a Lawyer listing all the defects and giving them a period of time to fix all issues.
If you wish, we can provide a free quote for this, but we would need a copy of the contract and a copy of the escritura, as well as a detailed list of all defects.
If they do not fix things on time and you have to submit a Court claim, they most likely will have to pay you for all repairs as well as fees and interest.
Feel free to contact us if you wish.
February 26, 2008 at 9:48 am #79203
So, if I understand correctly, the Seguro Decenal is an insurance policy taken out by the developer to insure themselves for for any faults they create? So there is no independent insurance company that the buyer can contact to get obvious and visible building defects rectified? (I’m talking here of missing drains/water into basements/rain into roofs/sewage drains incorrect/etc)
(So the buyer has no insurance cover, but the developer does).
To me I suppose that explains the position whereby we have to use legal proceedings to get anything started – the developer doesn’t want to do any work, wont admit to any building defects, etc. This is a very different situation from the process in the UK (no reason why it shouldn’t be), but starts to explain to a UK citizen why the Spanish process appears to be slow and adversarial.
Would you have any indication of likely timescales, form your past experiences, to rectify these sort of problems?
Thanks in advance.
March 11, 2008 at 5:32 pm #79783
It is not exactly like that.
The decennial insurance is transferred onto the buyer with the purchase of the house. So yes, there is an independent insurance firm that will cover any structural damage on your property during 10 years from the day you bought the house (the day the deed of sale was signed).
If I were you, I would contact a site surveyor to produce a report on the damages; then send a copy by legal letter to the developer giving him a chance to do the necessary repairs; If not done, then repair them at your cost (Community I guess) and then start a claim against the developer to be paid back all costs incurred plus interest and fees.
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