Author Topic: Who's Responsible for Cleanup? Landlord or Tenant?  (Read 2436 times)

therethere

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 765
Who's Responsible for Cleanup? Landlord or Tenant?
« on: December 04, 2015, 01:45:32 PM »
Just polling landlords and renter's out there....

Just went into the basement of the house because I thought it hadn't been heating very well. I also thought the house had smelled funny since we have turned on the heat. This is an old house and heating sucks normally. Lots of holes in the ducts in the crawlspace so a smell seemed reasonable. Last year I went and taped a few of the ducts so I thought they may have shifted since radon mitigation people messed around down there a few months ago. Well I was just expecting some misaligned ducts with holes. Instead, I found the drain from the kitchen sink is split. There are puddles of gross water/thick slimey mold mixture. It smells AWFUL.

Obviously they are going to come fix the pipe. In your opinion, who is in charge of this cleanup of the basement? Its disgusting and will take a few hours and a wetvac. Of course, I don't want to do it.

One added note that may sway people. We get quarterly inspections. When the guy came about a month ago he chose not to go in the crawlspace and replace the filter. Stating "its probably new because you wouldn't have used the heat all summer." Honestly I don't know if it has been leaking that long.

I'm interested. Who' responsible for cleanup?


Bonus question.... One of the ducts to the main room in the house is also disconnected entirely. It was not like this last year. Its about.... 20-25ft in a 12-18" crawlspace. When I went last year I made it about 6-8 ft in and then stopped because its creepy and there are no lights. It literally takes 5-6 hours for this house to raise 8 degrees when I get home and its only 25 deg out. Is that a reasonable request for repair request?

iamlindoro

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1520
    • The Earth Awaits
Re: Who's Responsible for Cleanup? Landlord or Tenant?
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2015, 02:32:18 PM »
In both the main question and bonus question, repair and all cleanup associated with the issue should be handled by the landlord, IMO.  A landlord who tries to make you responsible for any of this is a dirtbag.

norabird

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8190
  • Location: Brooklyn NY
Re: Who's Responsible for Cleanup? Landlord or Tenant?
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2015, 02:34:49 PM »
Absolutely hands down the landlord.

therethere

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 765
Re: Who's Responsible for Cleanup? Landlord or Tenant?
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2015, 02:53:24 PM »
Yeah... I mean I already know what I'm going to do. And that's because the same pipe burst about 12" from this about 2 years ago! I had someone over 5-6 times to get someone to remediate it. They kept "fixing it" which meant they just crossed their fingers and hoped I wouldn't check and would close it up. That was when it was just dirt. Now its covered in all the plastic they just put down for radon.

I want to just gauge if I'm being unreasonable. Mainly because the amount of bull* I had to go through last time to finally get it cleaned up. I just wish I could fix it myself and know I'd get reimbursed. Pains me to know the management company is gonna charge the landlord some crazy amount for all of this all while dragging their feet fixing it.

No cooking at home tonight ):

Gin1984

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4794
Re: Who's Responsible for Cleanup? Landlord or Tenant?
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2015, 02:58:55 PM »
As a landlord, the landlord.

coopdog

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 59
Re: Who's Responsible for Cleanup? Landlord or Tenant?
« Reply #5 on: December 04, 2015, 04:54:44 PM »
The truth is the lease should state the responsible party. In most residential cases what you described would be handled by the landlord, but the lease rules.

I'm a professional property manager of mostly commercial properties. We have leases where we take care of everything and leases where we take care of nothing.

Even if the lease states it's your responsibility, I'd ask the landlord to repair and clean it up and see what he does.

Bearded Man

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1142
Re: Who's Responsible for Cleanup? Landlord or Tenant?
« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2015, 12:15:00 AM »
Landlord, hands down. Did you get a written OK to tape the heat ducts?

therethere

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 765
Re: Who's Responsible for Cleanup? Landlord or Tenant?
« Reply #7 on: December 05, 2015, 09:29:21 AM »
No, I didn't ask for permission to tape the ducts. Our management company barely fixes important issues. Anything cosmetic or non-catastrophic needs to be reported 5+ times before anyone acknowledges it. Typically they then have someone come over to look at it, charge the landlord $100 for a diagnostic, and then the person never returns to fix anything. I'm handy so if I really don't want some tiny issues lingering I will fix it myself. Since it would only put me out the $10-$15 of the tape I did some myself for sanity in hopes of lower utility bills. It was probably 5-6 spots where ducts were misaligned by 1-2 inches.

Case in point... I called about the burst pipe yesterday at noon and no one has even called me back to come by and fix it. Its been "assigned" to someone and I just have to wait. I later realized, I needed to be very clear about the cleanup so I will need to call and set up a separate request, with a separate someone. I doubt anyone will come for that until early next week. I should have just gone to HD to get a patch so I could actually use the kitchen.

Ah this house is perfect for us. Except when we need something fixed....And to think I'm still crazy enough to think it would be a good deal to buy. Even with all the unpredictable headaches.