This is the state of my shower cubicle at the moment and its been like that since Monday afternoon (well to be far, the rotten wood is now outside as evidence to show the landlord if he thinks we're making it up).
Basically, a couple of weeks ago, my neighbour downstairs said she had water dripping through her ceiling so I reported it to the letting agency and they duly sent Steve, the maintenance man round and he re-sealed all around the shower tray as it had not been done properly by the looks of it when it was installed goodness knows when. Well, the sealant didn't work and the water kept dripping through Carol's ceiling.
The landlord sent one of his own workmen from Hertford and he told the letting agency that the tray needed replacing and he would get one of his lads to "bodge" the job to shut us up !!! Thankfully the people at the letting agency know what I have been through lately and politely told the landlord that that was just not happening and he said "oh, get your man to quote for the job then". So Steve came in and put in a quote. The landlord agreed to pay for the repair and also to pay for the full repair job needed on Carols ceiling.
Well Steve turned up on Monday to rip out the shower etc etc and he almost died when he saw the destruction underneath. The shower tray had been cemented in to start with so it took him almost 3 hours to get it out and in the bottom photo you will see an area of blackness - this is the rotten soggy floorboards where the door hadn't been installed properly. The middle photo shows the support joists that had been put in to take the weight of the concrete and they remind of breakwaters at a beach - they are soaked.
Where the long length of wastepipe goes into the 45' angle bend, its just been put in place - no push joint was used not any sealant so it has been leaking since day one really and eventually over the time, the wood couldn't soak up any more water and it had no where to go other than through Carol's ceiling.
Steve has had to go back to the letting agency to tell them about all this as his original quote just won't cover the amount of work now needed as it needs brand new floorboards, a new shower tray and door and the whole area has to be re tiled to make it safe and secure.
I wrote a strongly worded letter to the lettings agency yesterday to say that I would contest the decision should the landlord decide to send in his own men as he has obviously cut enough corners in the past to save money and if Steve does the job, I won;t have to take time off work but if he sends in his own cowboys, I would take the time off work to ensure the job was done to a professional standard and as a friend of mine is a teacher of plumbing etc I would insist he comes in to check the work (at the landlords expense of course) to make sure it was up to building industry code.
I am waiting for a phone call today from Steve with what is happening next.
In the meantime, I am with-holding 1/3 of my rent as I have no other washing facilities other than a tiny handbasin in the toilet and I'm not about to wash in the kitchen sink.
I have told the landlord that I am now having to cycle to my mums which is a 10 minute cycle ride each way every day to have a shower.
In reality, my lovely neighbour downstairs has given me her spare key and I at liberty to use hers whenever I need to.
On top of everything else with still moving boxes and packing at the house, I just don't need this at all but I take comfort that the lettings agency and Steve are on my side and fighting in my corner.
As for the house itself, we attended court on Friday and in view of the fact that we are close to actually exchanging the contracts on the house sale, the judge gave us a 56 day notice of eviction instead of the 28 day which the mortgage company had originally asked for. To be fair though, their solicitor was in full agreement and never put in any argument to the contrary.
At least, that part of my rubbish life is coming to an end now and I can turn the page on that bit and start the next chapter.
well I have to get off to work now so take care everyone xxx