View Full Version : Customer Claims Mulch Flooded His House

04-25-2007, 10:14 AM
Last night in north Texas we got on average 7 - 10 inches of rain. Received an email from a customer who's home was flooded during the monsoon, he claims that we pilled mulch up too high causing his house to flood. Crew supervisor claims that no more than a 1 inch hardwood top dressing was put on his beds more than two months ago. His beds are higher in the middle, nothing we did, - which caused the water to pool and thus flooding his house.

First, has anyone else ever gotten a complaint that mulch caused a house to flood - and secondly is it even possible? Am I wrong in thinking that water will run right threw mulch into the soil - and not actually hold any water.


04-25-2007, 10:30 AM
I would drive over and take some pictures of the situation for your evidence, then let a judge decide if you are guilty of gross neglegence. I bet u win

Eakern & Dog
04-25-2007, 10:38 AM
That is most ridiculous thing I have ever heard of !

04-25-2007, 11:03 AM
It is possible especially if you had a crown of mulch in the beds of your making.

04-25-2007, 11:31 AM
Koo -

I would agree, if we made the beds - and the bed crown, all we did was put an inch of top dressing on it. Also the house is at least 10 years old, the way we figured it was that the bed had drain lines - or was a non-issue.

04-25-2007, 11:43 AM
first call your insurance company. Let them handle the problem. The insurance has lawyers for this kind of stuff. You pay for their services..Let them fight the battle for you.

04-25-2007, 11:58 AM
Good point Marc - but I'll wait for the customer to come to his senses first. If in a day or two he is still screaming I will contact my carrier.


04-25-2007, 12:05 PM
Take pics. and document everything that way if it comes to that. you have everything ready for the insurance folks. I would imagine they are screaming at you since they don't have flood insurance and their Homeowners policy is denying their claim to them. So they Homeowner is going after the next deep pocket.

04-25-2007, 06:03 PM
Im sure alot of homes flooded with 7-10 inches of rain..They just want to put the blaim on someone so they can sue. Take pictures and just contact your carrier to let them know whats going on.

04-25-2007, 06:22 PM
Sounds like it isn't the mulch, but the soil underneath. It also sounds like you missed out on some money by not fixing the problem before putting the mulch down. Oh well, either way, the flooding had nothing to do with the mulch.

04-25-2007, 06:35 PM
Yea, same here in NJ. We got 8 inches of rain last monday. The whole passaic river rose onto the street.. Almost Every house in my town and surrounding towns had water in their basements. Some have never had water before, but after 8 inches, they sure will. Thats a huge amount of rain.

04-25-2007, 06:38 PM
7 to 10 in what time frame? (How long was the rain?) Iam guessing there were other drainage issues that are not resolved or compounded by the heavy rain and the mulch would likely not cause or compound the problem . (Mitigating factors.)

Are there any other houses that flooded in the area?

General Landscaping
04-25-2007, 10:15 PM

Do not pass go, do not collect $200.

04-26-2007, 03:42 AM
Marc has given you good advice. Document everything, and as general said
don't wait do it now, he will not come to his senses.

04-26-2007, 07:50 AM
Most states put a statute of limitation on filing of 3 years. So thee is nothing to stop him from filing in 2 years 11 months, long after you've forgotten the details.

An insurance company won't ding you for reporting something or turning something in, but if you don't report something to them and work a deal and the HO goes back on the that deal and then you try to file with the insurance you maybe denied.

04-26-2007, 07:54 AM
Sounds like the moron doesn't have flood insurance, and he's looking for anyone except himself to pay for his flood damage. Document everything and be prepared.

04-26-2007, 10:03 AM
I've never heard of that one before sounds like the guy just wants to find anyone he can to put the blame on

04-26-2007, 10:37 AM
Thanks y'all. I responded to his email yesterday, as well as left a voicemail, and never heard back from him - I'm thinking he may have come to his sences after realizing it was the amount of rain, not the f-ing mulch. Everyone I spoke to yesterday had the same response as the majority of responses in here, the guy is looking for someone to blame.

General Landscaping
04-26-2007, 03:22 PM
In 2 years, when he is still paying for the damage, he'll still be able to drag you into court.
Get your insurance company involved. Do it now, while the mulch layers are still visible. There is no way 1" would cause this problem, but how will you prove that you did'nt crown the beds or create a drainage problem? When the evidence is all blended and composted together, some bleeding heart jury is going to side with the plaintiff, because you'll be on the stand with nothing more than a sworn statement.

Show this ass that your serious about defending your position.