Unsafe building cladding - who should pay?

Soldato
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Been watching this on the news today and I'm surprised that nobody seems to be suggesting holding the building companies liable?

Right now it's looking like it'll either be homeowners/leaseholders or the taxpayer that are going to have to pay to fix problem properties.

Surely the building companies who fitted flammable cladding to buildings and profited from their sale should be the ones footing the bill?
 
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Soldato
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Have a colleague who owns a leasehold one, and she has been given a share of the bill (£20k).
 
Soldato
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It's a failure of regulation, therefore I believe it's one where Government should pick up the tab. Gov can then take it up with the manufacturers who bent the rules and architects/builders who made dumb decisions to reclaim money from insurers where possible.

Relying on building firms to do the right thing isn't working.
 
Soldato
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The builders are responsible to the leaseholders.
The certification companies and manufacturers are responsible to the builders.

I saw an employee from a certification company in the Grenfell inquiry admitting that the test results were falsified but as a trainee he was doing what he'd been told was standard practice in the industry.

If a buyer can't hold a manufacturer responsible where would buyers be? It's nonsensical that the leaseholders are left with the bill while everyone else shrugs.
 
Soldato
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unfrotunately it looks like it is the owners / leasers that are getting nailed. The bills appear to be getting split between all the residents in the blocks. To make matters worse, the value of their flats / appartments have literally been set to zero, so they can't even sell them as no banks will provide a buyer with a mortgage for them, although the very same banks are hell bent on making the current owners contiune to cough up their montly mortgage payments. It's disgraceful, and the government have litterally done nothing to help them. If this was banks they would have cut a check for billions to save them already.
 
Soldato
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The builders are responsible to the leaseholders.
The certification companies and manufacturers are responsible to the builders.

If that's the case then it should be for the builders and the certification/cladding manufactures to fight it out. Rather then leaving the owners liable and forced to pay the costs.

At the end of the day if the owners bought the property off a builder the contract is between them and they can presumably hold the builder liable for any safety issues?

If I bought a car and years later where was a fault with the brakes/etc the manufacturer would be liable to fix the fault. To me this is like the car manufacturer saying they bought the brakes off another company and blaming them rather than fixing the problem.

I don't see why builders aren't being forced to fix this. Especially when many appear to be relatively recently built properties?
 
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Caporegime
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yes, was probably just done to tart the buildings up for all the toffs that lived in the mansions that overlooked them.
they look like a turd dipped in glitter to try and squeeze a bit more profits

BTW there is a small amount of cladding where I live but only along the tops parts of the brick balconies that looked better before.

I realised something, slugs love to live under the cladding.....
 
Capodecina
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It's a failure of regulation . . .
Are you sure of that? I was under the impression that (in the case of Grenfell Tower) the manufacturers of the cladding material were not totally straight about confirming to the regulations and that the builders did not strictly adhere to the manufacturer's guidance on installation?

I don't know whether this is correct or if it applies to other buildings where the cladding is considered unsafe.

However, I would certainly go along with the idea that major building companies seem to have far too "cosy" a relationship with Government and with Local Councils - cf Ernest Marples and Beeching :rolleyes:
 
Soldato
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It's a regulation failure if it can be shown that it should have been picked up at the time based on knowledge and working practices of the time and was missed due to negligence or even deliberately. And in that case the bill should be footed at a very high level by perhaps via legal pursuit of companies who deliberately glossed over it, or even government if the problem was just due to a lack of guidance and 'structural' issues in the regulation chain.

If it's one of those things where the dangers couldn't be reasonably expected to be known about at the time, then it's probably tough **** for those who now 'own' the cladding. Sort of like if we all found out housebricks were suddenly going to melt one day, all brick built house owners would have to suck it up.
 
Soldato
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I mean lots of people buy property that has problems with it but are liable to pay for the fixes, I feel bad for people in the situation with cladding but we've also had problems with the house we bought and there's no massive public outcry, just as there isn't for millions of people who buy property and have to spend thousands fixing problems with it.
 
Soldato
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I mean lots of people buy property that has problems with it but are liable to pay for the fixes, I feel bad for people in the situation with cladding but we've also had problems with the house we bought and there's no massive public outcry, just as there isn't for millions of people who buy property and have to spend thousands fixing problems with it.

That's why I don't think the government (taxpayer) should be forced to foot the bill. Seems unreasonable that the builders seemingly have no liability here IMO especially if the property was a newish build?
 

fez

fez

Soldato
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I mean lots of people buy property that has problems with it but are liable to pay for the fixes, I feel bad for people in the situation with cladding but we've also had problems with the house we bought and there's no massive public outcry, just as there isn't for millions of people who buy property and have to spend thousands fixing problems with it.

The problem is that this isn't something that anyone would have any knowledge of when buying. As far as I know, no survey says "did they build this house/flat out of a really flammable material". Certainly I wouldn't have thought so before Grenfell. Our survey should tell us about everything that they could possibly forsee and any historic issues the building has had but I would be furious if lets say the government came out tomorrow and said "right, everyone whos home is not in band A for energy efficiency has to change that within 2 years". It would tank the value of our home and cost us a fortune that we could never have forseen when we bought the house.

The cost of fixing the cladding can run into 10s of thousands and in the mean time as far as I understand, you have to pay for a full time fire marshall to essentially monitor your block until the issue is fixed.

Someone, somewhere is responsible for this and heads should role. Not just because of the deaths but also due to the costs involved. Companies have been allowed to pull **** like this for far too long without adequate negative consequences when they are caught.

There was a story about some poor girl that had just bought her first flat and she essentially had to declare bankruptcy because she couldn't afford the ongoing costs and the cost of removing/replacing the cladding. She basically handed the keys back to the bank. Must be horrible for the people caught up in this.
 
Soldato
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<snip>

There was a story about some poor girl that had just bought her first flat and she essentially had to declare bankruptcy because she couldn't afford the ongoing costs and the cost of removing/replacing the cladding. She basically handed the keys back to the bank. Must be horrible for the people caught up in this.
Yep. Essentially what happened to a colleague of mine. Tears on the phone when she missed out on promotion which would have helped, but essentially mad at the world for "telling her to get on the ladder" and the punished beyond her means to cover the cost.
 
Commissario
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I mean lots of people buy property that has problems with it but are liable to pay for the fixes, I feel bad for people in the situation with cladding but we've also had problems with the house we bought and there's no massive public outcry, just as there isn't for millions of people who buy property and have to spend thousands fixing problems with it.
I think there is a slight difference between the normal sort of issues you find when buying a property, and finding that the building itself is unsafe due to a complete failure of the government to monitor what the building industry was doing, and the manufacturers fudging figures for the safety tests.

To my mind the cost should be held by those that made, fitted and approaved the cladding - the people buying the properties should have faith that the building materials are safe, they are not qualified or expected to do in depth research and independent testing to check that it is safe.

It's on a par with some of the tower blocks built in the 50's and 60's where they found that rubbish had been used to fill gaps in the structure (iirc discovered after a gas explosion that should have been a relatively minor thing caused an entire section of one to collapse).
 
Associate
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If the builders were to be held responsible they would all just declare bankruptcy. Most seem to hold only a small amount of "cash" for liquidity, so always in trouble when bad times hit.
 
Soldato
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Not sure they can force the tenants to pay either though. They would (and should) laugh in their face. GL to the landlord with finding someone to replace them.
 
Soldato
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The biggest failure will probably turn out to be taking responsibility for fire standards away from the Fire Services and giving them to councils. The diminished quality of the oversight and competence of those carrying it out meant the requirements of the regulations were not met.
 
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