Housing Guide: Damage in the Building and Household – What To Do?

Housing Guide: Damage in the Building and Household – What To Do?

Along the lines of “foresight is better than hindsight”, you would do well to take out an insurance policy for potential damages or accidents. As we explained the conditions in our last Housing Guide, this time we discuss specific to-dos in the event of damage in the building or household.


  1. Minimise the damage

Please do everything to minimise the damage. This means you should secure the damage site as well as possible without putting your own health at risk.

Work due to imminent danger may be carried out immediately – all further remedial work must always be agreed in advance with the insurance company and property management.


  1. Notify property management / insurance company

Property management and your insurance company will require the following information:

  • Contact information (address, telephone number) and contact persons
  • The policy number of your household insurance – please report the damage directly to your insurance company without delay.

You will be asked the following questions:

  • What exactly happened?
  • When did it happen (or what was the timeline)?
  • Where did it happen (apartment, common areas, cellar, rooftop, …)?
  • What is damaged and are there any consequential damages?
  • Do you have photographs you can provide?


  1. Document the damage and keep it on file

To be on the safe side, you should retain the damaged items for inspection.



What can be done to prevent damage?


  • Close the windows when you leave the apartment.
  • Turn off the water in the event of a longer absence.
  • Secure the blinds in case of a storm or thunder and lightning.
  • Regularly maintain / inspect parts subject to wear and tear (e.g. silicone joints, window seals, valves, …).
  • Do not dispose of sanitary articles, food scraps or similar items down the drain – this way you can prevent blockage.
  • Be careful with electrical appliances and washing machines – it is better not to leave them running when you are not in the apartment.
  • Empty the mailbox when you are away for a longer period of time = burglary prevention.
  • Always have necessary works carried out by professional companies – and also consult with your property management about it.



Are you a tenant or owner of a BUWOG apartment? You can report building damages to BUWOG at any time as follows:



Please note: This post constitutes neither legal advice nor binding legal information but is merely an overview that cannot consider the specific circumstances of each individual case. Any binding details can be found in the respective insurance policy.



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Clemens Schoder

About the author

Clemens Schoder

Function at BUWOG: Head of Insurance

With BUWOG since: May 2017

I work in the insurance department at BUWOG and have been in charge of all insurance matters since January 2021, with a focus on building insurance, business insurance and insurance for our new construction projects in Austria and Germany.

My responsibilities include insurance risk analysis, the tendering of insurance cover and the contractual administration and settlement of all insurance claims.

I am especially interested in the topics of process improvement, digitalisation and teamwork. BUWOG offers the ideal conditions in this regard, and we have already been able to successfully implement a number of projects in recent years.