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Thread: Flat Roofs

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    Question Flat Roofs

    Does anyone know if, or had experience, of claiming from your house insurance for a leaking flat roof? Just noticed I have a leak. I know its only a phone call, but I recon its a waste of time as no doubt it will be classed as lack of maintenance. Anyone tried claiming off your insurance before. Its Esure im with if that helps.

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    Regular Member alcutler's Avatar
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    No - but its always a question they ask when you apply for house insurance ie does any of the building have a flat roof - soooooo I would think if you tick the box they adjust the premium accordingly and its covered. Unless they refuse to insure you. Where I live there are a lot of the Wimpey chalet style houses that have a flat roof over part of the front and rear bedrooms and I know they claim off the house insurance when they start to leak - which is about every 10 -15yrs
    Last edited by alcutler; 28th June 2012 at 19:22.

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    They'll send someone out to look at it and see what the cause is. If the roof is old and in poor condition, they won't pay. If the rest of it looks fine then they probably will pay.

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    My dad and myself just replaced the flat roof, last week, with a lean-too pitched roof. Didn't bother contacting the insurance, cost me about £450 all in, which tbh isnt too bad, as it would have been about £200 to re flat roof it and of course ill never really need to touch it ever again.

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    Regular Member alcutler's Avatar
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    Well done - you've made a good saving there and with it having a pitch water will run off - a flat roof on any building is bad news. On the Wimpey type houses I mentioned around here that have the flat roof problems they reckon that in summer the sun causes the felt to expand an lift up - at night when it cools it shrinks down again and this action is in effect flexing the felt and eventually it cracks and allows water to get in and usually damages the boarding and ceiling underneath - very poor design really - glad your sorted.

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    Regular Member chewy71's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DasArab View Post
    My dad and myself just replaced the flat roof, last week, with a lean-too pitched roof. Didn't bother contacting the insurance, cost me about £450 all in, which tbh isnt too bad, as it would have been about £200 to re flat roof it and of course ill never really need to touch it ever again.
    Did he check with planning? Possible an app would be required unless it came under permitted development. Sometimes best not to ask as you can enlighten people to the works. Only becomes an issue if someone advises planning of the building works undertaken. Once sited for 4 years, planning can take no action.

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    Quote Originally Posted by alcutler View Post
    Well done - you've made a good saving there and with it having a pitch water will run off - a flat roof on any building is bad news. On the Wimpey type houses I mentioned around here that have the flat roof problems they reckon that in summer the sun causes the felt to expand an lift up - at night when it cools it shrinks down again and this action is in effect flexing the felt and eventually it cracks and allows water to get in and usually damages the boarding and ceiling underneath - very poor design really - glad your sorted.
    I did find where it was leaking, and temporarily sealed the leak with roofing mastic as a short term fix but tbh I dont think id have got past the winter without loosing the ceiling.

    Quote Originally Posted by chewy71 View Post
    Did he check with planning? Possible an app would be required unless it came under permitted development. Sometimes best not to ask as you can enlighten people to the works. Only becomes an issue if someone advises planning of the building works undertaken. Once sited for 4 years, planning can take no action.

    Well My dad did ask a few times whether we should or not, I said i'm not bothering. Yes I know I more than likely should have but I decided against bothering. I stay in an ex council house, when they were built in the 70's every second row of houses were built with a small extension(4m x 2m) as a cheap way of turning 3 bedroom houses into 4 bedroom houses, all were built with flat roofs. A few years ago the council then decided it would be much cheaper to add pitch roofs to these extensions than re-flat roofing them every 10 years or so. 4 out of the 6 council houses in my row have been done this way and I have checked with the councils online planning archives and could find no record of the council applying for planning permission to retrofit these pitched roofs to their own properties. The estate I live in must be around 1200 houses, say 500 of them have these short extensions and about half of them have been done with pitched roofs now, so if nothing else if worse came to the worst and I did get a letter from the councils planing dept I doubt they could refuse planning permission on a retrospective basis. We did joke about 1 guy that wandered past who did look a bit official."There goes the clerk of works..." LOL.

    Do you think the council would have applied for planning permission for each of their houses or would they just have got around it by saying it was a necessary improvement to a flawed design?

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    Forget planning, did same with mi sisters, built a roof on a roof in effect, just 3 inch higher at the wall side... No probs since and still looks flat, if you squint

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    Quote Originally Posted by DasArab View Post
    I did find where it was leaking, and temporarily sealed the leak with roofing mastic as a short term fix but tbh I dont think id have got past the winter without loosing the ceiling.




    Well My dad did ask a few times whether we should or not, I said i'm not bothering. Yes I know I more than likely should have but I decided against bothering. I stay in an ex council house, when they were built in the 70's every second row of houses were built with a small extension(4m x 2m) as a cheap way of turning 3 bedroom houses into 4 bedroom houses, all were built with flat roofs. A few years ago the council then decided it would be much cheaper to add pitch roofs to these extensions than re-flat roofing them every 10 years or so. 4 out of the 6 council houses in my row have been done this way and I have checked with the councils online planning archives and could find no record of the council applying for planning permission to retrofit these pitched roofs to their own properties. The estate I live in must be around 1200 houses, say 500 of them have these short extensions and about half of them have been done with pitched roofs now, so if nothing else if worse came to the worst and I did get a letter from the councils planing dept I doubt they could refuse planning permission on a retrospective basis. We did joke about 1 guy that wandered past who did look a bit official."There goes the clerk of works..." LOL.

    Do you think the council would have applied for planning permission for each of their houses or would they just have got around it by saying it was a necessary improvement to a flawed design?
    As I think I mentioned, in some cases it's best not to bother and you may only fall foul if a neighbour bubbles your building work. If not then chances are you will get away with it, and once sited for 4 years they cannot take action.
    Councils certainly skim on planning, where I live, they are carrying out large drainage works to overcome the flooding issues we had in 2007. This involves ripping up peoples gardens. My pal's neighbour has had their garden now replaced fully, and all of a sudden they have a new U shaped drive with new access onto the highway - it doesn't meet requirements for visibility splays etc and certainly would not pass,... there are no application submitted for the driveway either.

    @ leemarksmith,... I wouldn't advise 'forgetting planning', but your work was so minor compared to what was there you would not notice, whereas a pitched roof is considerably different and therefore noticable building works.
    In worst case scenario, should you 'forget planning' and build an extension, planning have the right to enforce you to demolish it.

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