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Old 12-05-2007, 11:56 AM
 
Location: SD
896 posts, read 3,056,270 times
Reputation: 325

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I have to vent too!

Moved into a nice well-kept home 4.5 months ago. When we moved in, we noted that the toilet was running and we wanted it fixed. A few weeks later we pushed to have a plumber come out. Owner said she wanted toilet replaced. Her Plumber came out, adjusted the ballcock and said that didn't need new toilet and a new one would change the tile in the bathroom and be a mess. Left it at that. It's not my call - between plumber and homeowner. No more problems with toilet. Not another word from homeowner.

Yesterday, I heard the same toilet running. Went upstairs, opened lid and adjusted ballcock as shown by plumber. Sound stopped. Sitting at dinner a few hours later, I looked up at my living room ceiling and there is a large wet spot and realized that my white sofa underneath is wet. Went upstairs and there is water on the bathroom floor. I shut the water valve off and saw that it was also corroded. The leak on the ceiling kept getting worse and there was also wet carpet in the bedroom next door to the bathroom. I called my husband and then the homeowner and homeowners son. Before I could get complete story to homeowner, I was accused of letting the bathtub overflow. Not possible. I told her I was concerned about ceiling. She yelled at me that it was a new toilet and there shouldn't be problems. I explained that it was not replaced. She was angry that she was not aware of it. (It was HER plumber). She told me not to worry about the ceiling-it will dry and she will look into a plumber. It's now 10AM the next day. We've called her twice. No response. The entire ceiling has spots on it now and my white sofa (which I have now moved) is covered in brown stains. The ceiling is still leaking.

Am I crazy? Now I told my husband to keep calling her.
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Old 12-05-2007, 12:09 PM
 
Location: friendswood texas
2,490 posts, read 4,723,187 times
Reputation: 2991
I would take photo documentation of everything to prove that the toilet had not been replaced, corrosion, damage to furniture, ceiling etc.. Provide this too her. Did the plumber leave a copy of the bill with you to show what work had been done? If so provide this to her too. Make copies of everything and send it certified mail to her as soon as possible. Not much of an answer but I hope it helps.
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Old 12-05-2007, 02:39 PM
 
Location: Northeastern WI
20,204 posts, read 16,651,907 times
Reputation: 36894
Quote:
Originally Posted by 5FLgirls View Post
I have to vent too!

Moved into a nice well-kept home 4.5 months ago. When we moved in, we noted that the toilet was running and we wanted it fixed. A few weeks later we pushed to have a plumber come out. Owner said she wanted toilet replaced. Her Plumber came out, adjusted the ballcock and said that didn't need new toilet and a new one would change the tile in the bathroom and be a mess. Left it at that. It's not my call - between plumber and homeowner. No more problems with toilet. Not another word from homeowner.

Yesterday, I heard the same toilet running. Went upstairs, opened lid and adjusted ballcock as shown by plumber. Sound stopped. Sitting at dinner a few hours later, I looked up at my living room ceiling and there is a large wet spot and realized that my white sofa underneath is wet. Went upstairs and there is water on the bathroom floor. I shut the water valve off and saw that it was also corroded. The leak on the ceiling kept getting worse and there was also wet carpet in the bedroom next door to the bathroom. I called my husband and then the homeowner and homeowners son. Before I could get complete story to homeowner, I was accused of letting the bathtub overflow. Not possible. I told her I was concerned about ceiling. She yelled at me that it was a new toilet and there shouldn't be problems. I explained that it was not replaced. She was angry that she was not aware of it. (It was HER plumber). She told me not to worry about the ceiling-it will dry and she will look into a plumber. It's now 10AM the next day. We've called her twice. No response. The entire ceiling has spots on it now and my white sofa (which I have now moved) is covered in brown stains. The ceiling is still leaking.

Am I crazy? Now I told my husband to keep calling her.



Been there done that. The apt my daughter used to live in out here had the same issue. The landlord simply painted the ceiling to cover the problem with the toilet, leaking upstairs, because within a few months, the area was brown again and the whole apt smelled like mildew. I told her to get the owner to fix that toilet area before someone comes crashing down through the ceiling and right into the living room. It never got done, she never called the city inspector because they knew everyone would have to move out, that place was so old and should have been condemmed. At that time, they really didnt have the money (who does?) to move so suddenly and break their lease. But she doesnt live there anymore anyway. Wonder who eventually got a headful of toilet water after they moved out??
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Old 12-06-2007, 12:59 PM
 
Location: SD
896 posts, read 3,056,270 times
Reputation: 325
What's funny is that these people are not slum lords. They lived in this house for 32 years until they had to move because the husband couldn't use stairs. The homeowner seems to have taken an instant dislike to us for some reason. We've gotten calls from her about mundane things like the lawn people think our kids have too many toys and that we need to keep our toys put away to keeping their mail for them to where are their cable cords (they left their box here for me to dispose of) and every time, she is rude for no reason.

Anyway, got no response yesterday until I called the plumber myself and I guess she didn't tell them it was an emergency so they didn't have me on the list for that day. I was not going to be serviced until Friday. When I explained the situation, they had someone at my house within an hour. Needless to say, it was a small leak that was easily fixed but because they waited so long to listen to me, it caused a lot of damage. Homeowner even told the plumber that I'd overfilled the tub and I was at fault. The plumber got my back, defended my family and even commented that he had written that she should get a new toilet within 6 months if there was another problem. Now, the ceiling in the living room has been removed, the room is isolated with plastic, there are huge fans blowing in there as well as my children's bedroom. My house is a furnace from the heat of the fans, too. Oh, and I can't use the stove, sink (because of drainage tubes) or washer and dryer because too much electricity will short circuit the drying equipment. We were advised by the company to stay in a hotel.

And the homeowner blames me! What about my inconvenience and the inconvenience of my two children being displaced and made to sleep on the floor and not being able to eat in our home? Why should I pay for a hotel? I'm not at fault here.
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Old 12-06-2007, 01:11 PM
 
Location: Bike to Surf!
3,082 posts, read 6,580,083 times
Reputation: 2814
Your house might now qualify under California rental law as "unlivable." Google "California Renter's Law" and look it up to see.

For as long as it remains this way, you are allowed to withold rent, so you can spend that money on a hotel. Look up the law before you start pro-rating your rent, though. Document everything and send your landlord a letter with the pertinent sections of the law attached.

Also, don't hold mail for ANYONE! You can get in serious trouble for doing that. Call the post office and report that they no longer live at your address. Refuse to touch anyone elses mailbox (if they're asking you to check theirs).
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Old 12-06-2007, 01:42 PM
 
Location: Dallas, Texas
3,589 posts, read 371,011 times
Reputation: 533
Quote:
Originally Posted by 5FLgirls View Post
What's funny is that these people are not slum lords. They lived in this house for 32 years until they had to move because the husband couldn't use stairs. The homeowner seems to have taken an instant dislike to us for some reason. We've gotten calls from her about mundane things like the lawn people think our kids have too many toys and that we need to keep our toys put away to keeping their mail for them to where are their cable cords (they left their box here for me to dispose of) and every time, she is rude for no reason.

Anyway, got no response yesterday until I called the plumber myself and I guess she didn't tell them it was an emergency so they didn't have me on the list for that day. I was not going to be serviced until Friday. When I explained the situation, they had someone at my house within an hour. Needless to say, it was a small leak that was easily fixed but because they waited so long to listen to me, it caused a lot of damage. Homeowner even told the plumber that I'd overfilled the tub and I was at fault. The plumber got my back, defended my family and even commented that he had written that she should get a new toilet within 6 months if there was another problem. Now, the ceiling in the living room has been removed, the room is isolated with plastic, there are huge fans blowing in there as well as my children's bedroom. My house is a furnace from the heat of the fans, too. Oh, and I can't use the stove, sink (because of drainage tubes) or washer and dryer because too much electricity will short circuit the drying equipment. We were advised by the company to stay in a hotel.

And the homeowner blames me! What about my inconvenience and the inconvenience of my two children being displaced and made to sleep on the floor and not being able to eat in our home? Why should I pay for a hotel? I'm not at fault here.
Your landlord is an idiot. I won't rent privately unless it's through a property management company, mainly because I don't want to have to deal with the property owner...EVER...because a lot of them are control freaks with their property and think that even though you're paying them a pretty penny for the "privilege" of living in their castoff or investment property, you and your needs are very unimportant. What's more, they often finish out rental properties with cheap, bottom-of-the-line appliances, cheap shoddy carpet, cheap flooring, etc that they replace maybe once a decade and that is NEVER professionally cleaned...then have the nerve to demand the sun, moon, and everything in between if you "damage" any of it in any way.

I remember I was moving out of a house in England that I had rented with my ex; when we moved the fridge to see if anything had rolled/fallen back there, we found a child's clock that was broken. The clock was not on the owner's inventory of possessions (that house was FULL of their stupid, ugly crap; we put most of it in storage and put it back in the house prior to moving out), so we just left it on the counter because we didn't know what else to do with it. It wasn't ours. The property manager CHARGED US FOR THE DAMAGE TO A CLOCK THAT ACCORDING TO THEIR PROPERTY INVENTORY DID NOT EXIST. We refused to pay it. The owners actually called us up and ******ed at us for "breaking" their son's clock. Whatever. We dared them to sue us. You can probably guess what happened with that one.
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Old 12-14-2007, 01:14 PM
 
Location: SD
896 posts, read 3,056,270 times
Reputation: 325
Here's the update: We did take photos! After seven inconvenient days, the fans have been removed. Now I have holes in the ceilings in my living room and garage and the carpet is pulled out of my children's bedroom. Merry Christmas! I got a call from the landlord on Monday to tell me that they would be coming to see the damage on Wednesday or Thursday. They did not tell us what the next step is. No call and it's now Friday. We noticed that one of our doors (a top lock that we always lock) was unlocked when we came home as well as the screen door not shut. My husband thinks that they must have come when we weren't home. According to our rental agreement, they have to give us 24 hours notice to enter the premises. Is it normal for landlords to just enter when you're not home?
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Old 12-14-2007, 01:27 PM
 
Location: Everett, Wa
601 posts, read 1,262,733 times
Reputation: 666
NO... landlord must give you 24 hours notice...I believe that is the law in most states.
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Old 12-14-2007, 03:05 PM
 
Location: Volker, Kansas City, MO
12,062 posts, read 18,980,775 times
Reputation: 3623
When I lived in an apartment in college (in Missouri) maintenance men would just wander into our apartment whenever they felt like it. They caught a roommate of mine in a very compromising position. I called them on it, they said "sorry" but continued to do it. I was 19 and stupid- today I'd never stand for that.
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Old 12-15-2007, 10:42 AM
 
967 posts, read 3,302,700 times
Reputation: 238
I would call the tenant board in your area and explain the situation. You may be entitled to money for a hotel stay while the issues are resolved. Moreover, I don't know if it would be overkill to do this but it might be a good idea to do a mold test to make sure the water hasn't caused mold. In addition, it is not legal for a landlord to enter the premises without first checking with you. The amount of notice may vary depending on the area. It's possible they either don't know the rules as a private landlord or are ignoring them.

My sister works as a paralegal for attorneys that handle tenant rights. She's run into a lot of landlords who will bully tenants and break the rules because they realize a lot of tenants don't know what their rights are.

My previous landlord was a nightmare at first. When the faucet in the tub broke off in my hand and spouted water all over the place over Christmas weekend, he turned off the water and told me he couldn't have a plumber out for 3 days because it would cost him double time to have it fixed on a holiday weekend. I told him that was not my problem and he stormed off. We stuck to our guns. I told him if he wasn't going to call a plumber I would do so and I'd take the money off the rent. After he threw a hissy fit he called a plumber and got it resolved. But only after much screaming and swearing on his part. A few weeks later he got into a fight with our neighbor across the hall because he said they had opened a window and he was paying for the heat. (They did this because he hadn't fixed a problem with their heat so their place was stifling hot.) The neighbors told us a few days later that he had walked into their apartment when they weren't home and closed the window. We printed a copy of the tenant rights handbook off the state website and left it on his doorstep. That was the last problem we had with him.
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