Sunday, February 06, 2011

Big changes

Well, it's time to move again. Our apartment has been leaking -- severely -- on and off for the last month, and we've had it. Our landlord has been responsive, but his responses have been rather lackluster. His attitude, now that he's finally getting the whole roof redone after not doing it in the summer like he said (last winter) that he would, is that we should make sure the leaks have stopped, then let the remaining water "leach out" of the insulation and ceiling plaster/drywall, and then dry it all out with a dehumidifier.


As AB's mom asked last night, "'leach out?' LIKE INTO OUR LUNGS?!!!" Yeah. Everyone I've talked to has said we need to get out NOW -- mold develops in as little as 24 hours! When part of the ceiling in the dining room actually came down in a massive cave-in two weeks ago, we saw black mold-y looking areas on the plaster, but I was just so stunned by the fact that a 2ft by 3 ft piece of our ceiling had just caved in, I didn't even consider that I might be looking at a dangerous air situation!

Then when water started coming through the light fixture above the kitchen sink and seeping out of one of the electrical outlets in the kitchen, I started to think, "Um, this might not be up to code."

So--we've been talking and researching, and we're getting out. I sent an email to our landlord last night telling him yet again about all this stuff, and that we think this is no longer a safe place to live, and that he really won't be able to repair the damage properly while someone is living here. I was very firm but conciliatory, thanking him for his efforts so far; AB's mom helped me tone down the hysterics.

Yesterday, we checked out a very nice old farmhouse in nearby Stormstown -- a big fireplace, out in the country, few neighbors, with a creek running about 200 yards behind the house (and down a little hill), and plenty of bird-feeding and bird-watching opportunities right in the backyard! It's a little more than we're paying now, but it's got so much more room and we'll be able to have a garden! It'll be almost like the Marsh House, only with AB and no obligations to fix up the place -- which means almost heaven!

We're just waiting to hear back from our current landlord about whether he'll release us from our lease without argument or whether we'll have to get more serious with him. I'm giving him until 2pm to respond, then I'm calling him. We need to put our deposit down on the country house.

In the meantime, I'll leave you with some photos of our current situation.

Here's where the ceiling caved in:The landlord had his guy come in a few days after the cave-in (and after we'd experienced days with the joy of bare fiberglass insulation serving as our ceiling) and put that piece of plywood over the hole. God only knows what it looks like now above that plywood, but you can see the areas where water has come through the plywood too.

The bedroom bucket brigade:We'd just gotten into bed Wednesday night when water started dripping onto our bed. We had to move it out of the bedroom. I had already had to stay home from work on Wednesday to empty these buckets every 2-3 hours. Yes, there was THAT much water.

The corner of our bedroom, where you can STILL see a water-filled bubble under the latex paint, as well as a line of wet plaster that dripped off the ceiling (and onto AB's nightstand):The ceiling looks like it has leprosy.

Updates yet to come!

UPDATE! We're out! Our landlord, who really is a decent guy, has granted us a release. I contacted the country house owner and we're signing the lease tomorrow! Now I just have to figure out how fast I can pack us up, retain a moving service, and get over to the other house!


LauraHinNJ said...

Call code enforcement!

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

Yeah, you got to get out of that death trap.

dguzman said...

Laura, I plan to do that tomorrow, as part of my insurance against the landlord coming back at us with a NO answer to terminating the lease without penalty.

Dr. Monkey--thanks for your support! It's good to have a former presidential candidate on our side. And don't think I won't use that for leverage, sir.

Fran said...

Oh my! That is beyond awful. I'm glad that he let you out, but he should refund you money for having been subjected to all of that mess.

Glad you found a very cool place to go go... Hang in there as you make the transition in a hurry.

Lynne at Hasty Brook said...

Get out! The farmhouse sounds perfect.

KGMom said...

Yowza--I hope that landlord has the sense to release you.
If not, go for broke. He has NO basis on which to force you to pay for his problem. We're talking legal action.

John said...

Wow, that sounds like a dangerous situation! I hope you can get out without difficulty.

Rabbits' Guy said...


THAT is for the birds!

Time to move along ...

Good to have plenty of photos and contact records!

Susan Gets Native said...

Holy crap!
Glad you are getting out! I mean, holy crap!