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Residential Property Management/Property management liabilities to tenant property loss


Tenant has property damage in the apartment due to flooding. The flooding is not the fault of the property management, but another tenant. The tenant left the water running in a kitchen sink full of dishes for several days. The water went into the next apaartment and flooded that apartment also. Tenant property has been damaged. The carpets have been vaccuumed to dry, but the smell of mold and mildew is still there. They have not replaced the carpet or pad. It has taken several days for the management to respond to tenants needs originally and even after the carpets have been vaccuumed. Does the property management have responsibility as well as the tenant who was at fault? Should the management have insurance to cover these expenses?
The tenant who has been displaced is now missing a bed, since the mattress was on the floor, clothing on the bed, and shoes on the floor, as well as a few other items. The smell has been overwhelming to inhabit the dwelling. Client has not spent the night since this has happened. It has been at least two weeks now and they have not answered all requests. Can you please give us some advice? Thank you.

I would imagine that the property manager has filed a claim with their insurance company, and yes, they should proceed with repairs and cleaning. Although the other tenant is likely primarily at fault, it is unlikely that tenant would have the ability to pay for any of those damages (even though they will be asked to pay for some or all of it eventually). So, the insurance proceeds (assuming coverage is in place) will most likely pay for everything. Note that any damage to personal property would not be covered under such an insurance claim (tenants are usually required to carry renters insurance for those items, or risk loss if they choose not to procure that insurance).

You should write a demand letter to the management company on getting everything dried out, cleaned and/or replaced, and repaired. If no reasonable response, legal action may be necessary, in which case you should consult an attorney.

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Mike Fortunato


Very familiar with all aspects of property management (tenant/landlord issues, lease administration, facilities maintenance, financials, etc). 25+ years in property management


I have been in real estate management for 25+ years, both residential and commercial properties. Currently own and operate a commercial and residential real estate management company in southern California.

IREM; BOMA; MLS; National Association of Realtors; California Association of Realtors

CPM (Certified Property Manager) and RPA (Real Property Administrator)

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