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View Poll Results: What do I do here?

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  • Threaten the landlord. Use negotiation pressure to break the lease. Leave building in tact.

    2 15.38%
  • Call the inspectors. Possibly get building condemned and force several people to find new homes.

    11 84.62%
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  1. #1
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    Morton's fork, serious apartment trouble.

    I've got big trouble here.

    I bought a house and now I want to break my lease. Problem: My landlord wants me to pay a lot of money, keep paying rent, and find a new tenant, which I guess is fair, except I don't want to.

    More importantly, the building is falling apart and can't be fixed with me here.

    There's a plumbing issue. There is damage from an exterior wall leak due to the weather and neighbor's lack of building maintenance. Fixing these would require me to move out. The plumbing issue is knocking this place easily out of code.


    Okay, so easy solution, right? Call the city inspector, have them come out, declare the apartment untenable, break the lease. I move, then the damage can be fixed. It can't be fixed while I'm here: there will be no bathroom for weeks, and that is unsanitary and not acceptable living conditions. Hence my lease is annulled.

    Problem.

    The pluming issue was found due to the downstairs neighbor reporting a leak into their bathroom. This happened after multiple plumbing repairs in both bathrooms. Either the repairs were inadequate or incorrect or the issue was never noticed during repair.

    I inspected the downstairs apartment.

    I am not qualified to do this in any way.

    I found two types of mold.

    The downstairs neighbor goes on vacation a lot. The downstairs neighbor gets sick when here, and gets better when away for several weeks or a few months. The mold is making the downstairs neighbor sick, mold does that. I mean, maybe not, but something here is doing it and we know mold does that, this is a reasonable conclusion. More importantly, it could make them sick and it could cause long-term health issues.

    The landlord cut that chunk of ceiling out and patched it with new drywall. This doesn't fix the issue. There is still a leak. There is still mold. It's now hidden.

    Understand: these issues can cause severe health problems. If I call the city inspector, it'll be great for me: my lease will probably get broken, no penalty to me, though this will severely hurt my landlord. Moreover, the apartments affected or possibly the whole building could be condemned. The tenants may be forced to vacate, and the building may be declared unlivable until such time as proper repairs are made. This could make these buildings unprofitable to my landlord entirely and he may be forced to drop them.

    If I don't call, people could unknowingly move into a moldy apartment and develop long-term health issues. Also not good.

    Morton's fork. What do I do? One of these is a good cut-and-run strategy for me, both have negative impacts for others.
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  2. #2
    Administrator CbadRider's Avatar
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    I'd call the inspector. The landlord is required to provide a safe, healthy place for people to live in. The building most likely won't be condemned, but it would have to be repaired.

    The landlord needs to fix it. He should have insurance or some other means to take care of it.
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  3. #3
    You Know!? For Kids! jsharr's Avatar
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    Ask yourself how you would like to be treated if you were in this situation and go with that route.
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    Quote Originally Posted by colorider View Post
    Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.

  4. #4
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    Fixing mold is hard. It requires tearing out everything with mold in it. You have to not only fix the cause (whatever's making a supportive environment to incubate mold), but also remove the actual mold. That means removing pieces of the building.

    That can't be done with people here. The people have to be removed first.

    It most definitely will have to be repaired. I'm thinking if it's severe enough, though, the hazard may be too great to allow continued occupancy. Maybe not, but the black stuff is either mildew or it's a form of mold that WILL kill small children and the elderly; the green stuff is NOT mildew.
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  5. #5
    You Know!? For Kids! jsharr's Avatar
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    Paralysis by analysis. Ask yourself how you would want to be treated, make a decision and go for it. Speculating on the amount of repair needed is just that, speculation. Either call the inspector or call the landlord.
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    Quote Originally Posted by colorider View Post
    Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.

  6. #6
    Chepooka StupidlyBrave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsharr View Post
    Paralysis by analysis. Ask yourself how you would want to be treated, make a decision and go for it. Speculating on the amount of repair needed is just that, speculation. Either call the inspector or call the landlord.
    Maybe he could speculate over the mold


  7. #7
    You Know!? For Kids! jsharr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StupidlyBrave View Post
    Maybe he could speculate over the mold

    I see what you did there.
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    Quote Originally Posted by colorider View Post
    Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.

  8. #8
    derailleurs are overrated bigbenaugust's Avatar
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    Buy the entire complex tickets to the same movie showing. While they are all out, burn the house down.
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  9. #9
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    EPG?

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  10. #10
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    A real-estate attourney would be worth their weight in gold here.
    You'll want to be very familiar with the landlord-tenant laws for your area.
    There are minimum standards the landlord needs to meet. These are set by law and can't be overturned by any lease.
    With the inspection-data the attourney would be able to get you out of lease easily.

  11. #11
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    Why do you care about the other tenants? They will be but mere memories once you have been in your new home for several months.

    All you are concerned about is getting out of the lease, and it appears you have a case, and now you need to support it with independent evidence from the city inspectors.

    The landlord is using the very reason why you are hesitating on this to avoid doing the work that is needed... dislocation of tenants who probably can't afford to go anywhere. Unless he is called on it, and the tenants face the short-term discomfort of finding somewhere else to live, they will likely live there and die there... sooner than they need to.
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  12. #12
    Senior Member skiahh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CbadRider View Post
    I'd call the inspector. The landlord is required to provide a safe, healthy place for people to live in. The building most likely won't be condemned, but it would have to be repaired.

    The landlord needs to fix it. He should have insurance or some other means to take care of it.
    This. And you'll be doing your fellow tenants a favor, even it seems like you might not be. They're now living in unhealthy circumstances with mold, leaky plumbing, possibly sewage and who knows what else?

    Plus, from a business perspective, your landlord is trying to hold you to a contract for which he is clearly not fulfilling his side of the bargain while holding you fully to yours. He's a sleaze to whom you owe absolutely no loyalty.

    Report the conditions immediately.
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  13. #13
    Too Much Crazy C Law's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skiahh View Post
    This. And you'll be doing your fellow tenants a favor, even it seems like you might not be. They're now living in unhealthy circumstances with mold, leaky plumbing, possibly sewage and who knows what else?

    Plus, from a business perspective, your landlord is trying to hold you to a contract for which he is clearly not fulfilling his side of the bargain while holding you fully to yours. He's a sleaze to whom you owe absolutely no loyalty.

    Report the conditions immediately.
    this

  14. #14
    Senior Member mikeybikes's Avatar
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    Call the inspector. Sounds like the building should be condemned.
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  15. #15
    Fax Transport Specialist black_box's Avatar
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    Inspector.

  16. #16
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    You need a smack for signing a long term lease then buying a house.
    Now living conditions at your low cost rental joint suddenly have become a severe health issue?

    You're going to have to man up on this money issue and take some financial responsibility or just be a louse and squeal to the building inspector.
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  17. #17
    You gonna eat that? Doohickie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spry View Post
    You need a smack for signing a long term lease then buying a house.
    Now living conditions at your low cost rental joint suddenly have become a severe health issue?

    You're going to have to man up on this money issue and take some financial responsibility or just be a louse and squeal to the building inspector.
    This. If the reason you bought a house was because the old place was that bad, you did it out of order; you should have gotten an inspector in, and once he agreed that the place was that bad, you could have said the landlord broke the lease by not providing an acceptable living conditions. Or if he disagreed, you should have waited out your lease before buying a house. If you signed a lease agreement, a legal contract to lease the place, you have an obligation to pay the full amount of the lease.
    I stop for people / whose right of way I honor / but not for no one.



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  18. #18
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    ......and WTF is "Mortons fork"?
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  19. #19
    Senior Member himespau's Avatar
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    Both are at fault, but the real question is, do you have any hot neighbors who are going to be displaced? If so, call the inspector and tell them that you might have room for a couple of roommates in this new house you just happen to have bought. Charge them a little rent at first to cover your mortgage and stop charging if it goes anywhere. At the very least, you get some eye candy and a bit of your mortgage covered for a while.
    Punctuation is important. It's the difference between "I helped my uncle, Jack, off a horse" and "I helped my uncle Jack off a horse"


  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by himespau View Post
    Both are at fault, but the real question is, do you have any hot neighbors who are going to be displaced? If so, call the inspector and tell them that you might have room for a couple of roommates in this new house you just happen to have bought. Charge them a little rent at first to cover your mortgage and stop charging if it goes anywhere. At the very least, you get some eye candy and a bit of your mortgage covered for a while.
    What if the "hot"neighbors beat the living crap out of this person first for leaving them homeless?
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  21. #21
    derailleurs are overrated bigbenaugust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spry View Post
    ......and WTF is "Mortons fork"?
    I figured it was some hole-in-the-wall Maryland town.
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  22. #22
    derailleurs are overrated bigbenaugust's Avatar
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    --Ben
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  23. #23
    Senior Member himespau's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spry View Post
    What if the "hot"neighbors beat the living crap out of this person first for leaving them homeless?
    And why bring up that you're the cause of their homelessness? Some tact would seem to be required.
    Punctuation is important. It's the difference between "I helped my uncle, Jack, off a horse" and "I helped my uncle Jack off a horse"


  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigbenaugust View Post
    So the rent-ducker took a creative writing class.
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by himespau View Post
    And why bring up that you're the cause of their homelessness? Some tact would seem to be required.
    Just like a fart in a hot tub,the nasty truth will come to the surface.
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