Thursday, May 6, 2010

Love Shack

I both love and hate our current house.

(No, this is not our actual decrepit shack. It's close, though.)

I love the trees, of course. And I love the fact that we have workroom and workshop space. I love that it's an older house, and has some character and charm that you just don't find in new cookie-cutter houses. It reminds me of my grandmother's farm house from early childhood. When I look out at the yard I keep thinking I should plant tomatoes or keep chickens. (Neither of which I have time for, mind you.)

I hate the neighbors, or at least their hellspawn kids. I hate the fact that since our house is old, the rooms are very very small. Our queen-sized bed is damn near wall-to-wall, and that's in the biggest bedroom. And right now I hate the landlord.
Here are the things that have broken, since we moved in:

1. The heater, twice, during January. It was forty degrees in the house one night.
2. The plumbing. Apparently the pipes for the washer and dryer were installed by chimps, because if you do more than a very small load of laundry, the sink in the garage overflows.
3. The fence. We had to do our own repairs, just for Bander's safety.
4. The plumbing some more. There's a leak in the backyard somewhere. Which I suppose means that I don't have to water, which is fine.
5, And now.... the air conditioning has decided to be fussy.
This is indeed the South. I can't describe our natural surroundings without using words like "lush", "green", "humid", and possibly "dank". "Moss-covered" and "languid" are high on the list, too. It isn't truly hot yet, not full summertime hot, but it's warm. And if the house is empty during the day, when we get home it's in the high 80's inside, and dammit, we need a little AC to bring it down to a balmy and tolerable 79.

What we've learned about the landlord is that they will wait until I raise seven different kinds of hell before they actually fix anything. The plumbing issues are something we've been discussing since mid-March, and we've seen a plumber exactly once. He scratched his head, opined that they needed to replumb half the house, and drove off. That was the end of that.

They did fix the heater, since it was broken when we moved in and it was actually possible to get frostbite in the living room. They promised to send tree trimmers and fence repairmen, but that never happened because there wasn't any health risk. I bet I have to bitch a LOT before they worry about whether I'm a mite warm this evening.

I'm sure I could use the plumbing issues to break the lease. But I just got all the boxes unpacked, not that long ago.

What should I do?


deltamoonsoap said...

Man I wish I had an answer for you, we left our last place because of a slum lord, I mean landlord like that. We were only there 8 months, the entire time had to turn the shower and tub on and off with Vice Grips! Is there like a rental advocate or something? Not like you have time to chase after this, I know! Good luck!

Joanna said...

Florida with bad plumbing and shitty A/C or lack of is unacceptable if you went into contract assuming you had those things.

You have rights.

How to get those things....well. Dunno. Perhaps put your needs in writing and document it in your calender every time you send a letter requesting repairs.

Maybe you can pay to have everything fixed in lieu of rent....? Maybe legal aid can tell you...

I know f&%$-all

Joanna said...

ps: sorry you have to deal with this...

Wonder Turtle Soaps said...

Ugh, house problems are such a pain, especially when there are several major problems going on at once. (And that always seems to be how it goes, doesn't it?) I hope at least the AC gets fixed for you very soon before summer hits because it is about impossible to live down here without it. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I suggest a letter from a lawyer mentioning "Breech Of Contract" and threatening reduction in rental payment until repairs are made.
If it just comes from you it won't have the same impact.

Joanna said...

oooo, I like stonemaven's idea!


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