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Cracked window on 13th floor apartment

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536 views 2 replies latest reply: 26 July 2016

hello, we have discovered a cracked window in our apartment and have no idea how it happened, our tenancy agreement says tenants are liable to replace glass with same quality glass if it’s their fault. We really don’t think we caused the damage and we think it may be due to the extreme heat of our flat or a badly fitted window. We have spoken to our building manager and we have been told that the replacement could cost thousands due to the particular  specialist  German glass  used in the building. 

We can’t find any other impact damage to the window or window sill which would indicate something had fallen on it and I’m concerned that they are going to take our whole deposit and more for something we didn’t do. I understand that we can take the dispute to an arbitrator when we move out to decide if we should pay.

if the landlord can prove on the balance of probabilities that the damage was caused by us, do you think we could argue that thousands of pounds for a window is an unreasonable expense and had we realised the cost of the glass when we entered into the contract we wouldn’t have agreed to the condition that the tenant replaces the glass to a similar quality? 

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Hi Ave,

The Landlord is legally entitled to reclaim any charges for any damage- regardless of the cost of the item. Although, thousands of pounds does sound extreme unless this is a very large piece of glass.

Glass does not devalue or have a shelflife- windows can last decades even centuries. I have never heard of a window cracking for any of the reasons you have mentioned. Someone in your flat (maybe a guest for a party) has almost certainly done this- they maybe didnt even notice at the time.

If you havent already, the best thing is to be upfront. Contact the Landlord, explain you have spotted the crack, that you have no idea how it happened and ask what happens next. If you’re lucky the Landlord may be able to claim it on his/her insurance in which case you may only be liable for the excess (usally no more than £300) and the uplift in his insurance premium thereafter. This will be a much cheaper option.

As Tenants, it is your responsibility to ensure yourselves to protect against such matters. There are lots of very reasonbale policies out there, specifically for Tenants, that cover your own possessions but also have an allotted allowance to protect accidental damage to the property/Landlords possessions. Its a small cost for a big piece of mind- well worth looking in to for your next tenancies.

Hope that helps.


Thanks for your advice, I think we will offer to pay the excess and hope that the insurance covers it.

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