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Chesterfield woman says tree fell on her ‘dream’ home

Posted at 10:01 PM, Jul 10, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-10 22:01:59-04

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- A Chesterfield woman is upset that she now needs major repairs to the brand-new home that she has only lived in for two months.

That's thanks to a fallen tree from an adjacent property. Mary Latta says her troubles began when she contacted the owner, hoping he would remove the tree from her King's Grove property.

"I did let him know this is my dream home. It's the first time I've purchased a brand-new home and I would assume you would just say let me go ahead and move this, just show some courtesy," Latta added.

She explained that the owner of the adjacent property told her it was her responsibility to take care of the fallen tree. Local insurance expert Michael Fisher who is not associated with her case confirmed for Problem Solvers that is generally what happens.

Fisher says when a tree falls on a person's property, that person must rely on their own homeowner's insurance. In this case, Latta said her insurance will take care of the damage to her home.

She and her husband must take care of getting rid of the huge oak tree that fell.

Now Latta says she is concerned about two unhealthy trees from that same adjacent property toppling into her yard.

State Farm agent Michael Fisher says anyone who thinks a neighbor's unhealthy tree could post a threat should send the property owner a certified letter and a copy to their own insurance company.

"If their tree falls on your property and they failed to remove a dead or unhealthy tree, there potentially could be some liability on their part. By having a record or it, sending it certified mail that just helps your chances as far as collecting," Fisher said.

CBS 6 Problem Solvers contacted the owner of the property behind Latta's home.

He said he wasn't intentionally being difficult, he was just dong what the insurance company told him to do.

He said in the coming days he will send out a crew to cut down the unhealthy trees that Latta is concerned about.

As a good faith effort, he also plans to remove the remainder of the tree that hit Latta's home.

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