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Old 03-05-2010, 10:45 AM
 
1 posts, read 9,050 times
Reputation: 13
Default raw sewage backup and incompetent cleanup

I have lived in this apartment for almost 7 months with no real problems.

I have been pretty happy with this place when I moved in 2009 up to this point.

Up until I got home, Wednesday March 3rd. Which happens to also be the "rent day", more on that later.

I got home and went to use the bathroom. Apparently, the people above me were already using it. There was a pretty heavy leak of Raw Sewage coming down from the ceiling into my bathroom. Later found out the apartment above me had a toilet that was leaking after they flushed it. (Yay.) And it was dripping steadily down into my bathroom. The drips would hit the toilet, edge of the bathtub, and the floor.

When I got home there was already a small pool of raw sewage on the floor. I did what any competent person would do, I called the emergency hot line they have available. Which no one answered. After a few mins I got a call back to which I had the very hard to understand maintenance finally agree to come over.

He came, saw the problem, began ripping things from the ceiling around the plumbing. And saw the leak was coming from the place above. So he goes to check above and tells them not to use the toilet so the leak will stop. Then comes back and tells me I have to wait until tomorrow for them to fix it. Okay, I agree.

The next day comes. At around 10 I have to leave for school so I call them and they say it should be done by the time I get home around 2pm.

I get home, check the bathroom. Well I was shocked. The pool of urine was still all around my toilet and tile floor. Nothing was cleaned. The ceiling was back together but that was it.

Furious I called the office again and explained the problem, after the manager telling me it isn't her responsibility to clean up messes she finally sent someone to clean up the sewage.

The guy comes in with a Mop and a Bucket. Apparently, they don't need soap to clean. He fills the mop bucket up with water and proceeds to mop up the urine with the water. Sets the contaiminated trash can/brush for the toilet and plunger outside the bathroom (Without cleaning them, even with his water) and mops the floor with his water. Then puts the trash/brush/plunger back in the place and leaves.

I had to clean the bathroom with bleach myself after this.(Not that I wasn't planning to anyways, but still they should have done a much better job)

I have lived in slums that do a better job of cleaning up.

Oh, this also happen on the day the rent was due. Which I forgot about due to the fact I was trying to save my apartment from being flooded with sewage. Did they waive the fee in light of this' Nope. To add injury they slapped a 75$ late fee. /facepalm [LEFT]
So my question and problem is here, how can I get them to waive the late fee? I suffered damages to the objects in the bathroom I threw out due to soaking in raw sewage for over a day. Forced to clean it myself.

They told me it isn't their responsibility to reimburse me for damages. And to that they will not waive the fee.
[/LEFT]
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Old 03-05-2010, 01:26 PM
Status: ":)" (set 5 days ago)
 
Location: West Virginia
8,122 posts, read 16,517,981 times
Reputation: 4242
Bummer!! Been there! We moved into a Handicap Apt! 8 other apts in the building & EVERY time there was a blocked line it came up in my Shower Stall!!! Flooded Bedrooms..living room & Kitchen!! Once while living there it came up in the Kitchen Sink!!!!!! Their Idea of cleaning was to suck it up with Wet Vac GRRRRRR

Last edited by Katie1; 03-05-2010 at 01:43 PM..
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Old 03-05-2010, 03:18 PM
 
253 posts, read 411,059 times
Reputation: 106
You're probably on the hook for any damages caused by the leak to your personal property. Most rental/lease agreements are worded as such that the responsibilty for such things goes to the renter. I had a similar situation - thankfully had no real damage - but I went out and got renter's insurance ASAP.

As for the late fee, how do you usually pay your rent? Do you give the check directly to the landlord/manager or mail it somewhere else?
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Old 03-05-2010, 06:16 PM
 
Location: Orlando, Florida
43,862 posts, read 26,699,854 times
Reputation: 58095
They don't clean up very well where I live either. I know in advance to be ready to clean any areas where repairs have been made. I REALLY hate their dirty shoes on my floor....but it can't be avoided. Since they don't speak English, the 'Take off shoes' sign on my door means nothing.

I thought there were laws regarding the removal of raw sewage though. You should check with your local health department. That sort of contamination can kill you.
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Old 03-06-2010, 06:12 AM
 
Location: 39 20' 59"N / 75 30' 53"W
11,996 posts, read 12,085,335 times
Reputation: 13375
The repair crises and rental payments are two seperate issues, rents still due on time. Plead your case to the PM, he/she may be willing to waive the fee.
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Old 03-06-2010, 08:00 AM
 
Location: Minnesota
1,298 posts, read 1,726,158 times
Reputation: 1342
suck it up on the late fees.. your bad on that one .. .. ok thats first

as for the nasty mess left and the barely able to speak english maintance guys ..
make some phone calls
1 the health dept and complain about the raw sewage leak you had
2 the City building inspector ( the other toilet needs to be checked for proper repair to the seal so it doesnt happen again )
3 DHS,Sheriffs dpt,Immigration .. and tell them all that the building is hireing non english speaking help .. most likely illegals to do work .. oh and unlienced contractors to do repair work .. sorry .. either they have the lience to do the work or they shouldnt be doing it ..
Sure I AM trying to show you how to cause a big stink .. it will cost the building more than the pitiful $75 bucks they got you for but it will also stop the crap deal of hireing unlienced and non english speaking contracters ..
LL that hire non lienced and non english speaking workers need to be stepped on .. they are just trying to save a buck by doing that BUT as long as they will hire and use such folks we will keep having the same issues with shoddy workmanship and non doucumented workers ..yes I am being a PIA about this but crap like this needs to stop and we can if every one works together to demand it .. ( ok off my political rant here .. )
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