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sinking floor saga in rental property where I live

(8 Posts)
cestlavielife Tue 04-Feb-14 15:58:07

i put some photos on my profile.
in october i alerted landlady - takes time but finally loss adjustors wer sent they agreed the bay window is subsidence they have bored holes in garden etc this is long term - I am not so worried about that.

the floors are separate case they have yet to send round someone to lift floor and inspect - i keep emailing them - however right now the floor slopes heavily and literally you can roll a ball down it from middle of lounge, so have moved shelves etc and cannot use part of lounge.

the hall way is "bouncy" more so in some places and the loss assessors did point out the kitchen floor was on a gradient. it definitely feels like it getting worse...whole flat is sinking...

landlady's builder reckons "oh two days to lift floors and sort it no problem that;'s what it took last time" (eh? insurers let slip there was a claim about six years ago for "flood damage" presumably just before flat was totally refurbished before i move. but if all joists have gone rotten that's not a two day job is it? any guestimates?

landlady asking if want to renew AST - i have said well not til i know how much work is involved..for my inconvenince she "not raising the rent" but frankly it should be reduced. if insurers take it onthey will pay if i and DC have to move elsewhere - if they dont who knows...

am looking at other places to rent - possibly can get something slightly cheaper. so effectively am on rolling rental,

what is my status, can i get someone in to say it's unlivable etc? bulding regulations? council?

or just find some place else then negotiate easy exit (dates wise - rentals go fast and you need to be able to move quickly i cannot afford to pay double rent...) and full deposit refund from landlady?

negotiate rental reduction from now til i move?

she thinks not raising rent is good enough but i have been living without one quarter use of lounge since october!

specialsubject Tue 04-Feb-14 16:28:14

blimey. Be glad you don't own this place. Sounds like a big job, and your landlady must be nuts to assume you will stay.

don't renew, go on to a rolling tenancy if you must - but why on earth would you stay? Give your proper month's notice and go. Should be easy to co-ordinate.

full deposit refund is not negotiation between you and landlady, it will be in a protected scheme and it is up to her to prove any damage caused by you. Which is not the sinking floors.

PigletJohn Tue 04-Feb-14 23:02:25

Is the tilting floor wooden or concrete?

TheCraicDealer Tue 04-Feb-14 23:19:00

I'm a loss adjuster (and occasional reluctant assessor).

If you're being dealt with by one of the big firms (I'm thinking initials CL or C's) then prepare yourself. This will be on-going for some time. Any subsidence claim takes longer than your average claim because of the need for monitoring, but these two firms take the biscuit with delays. Even worse at the moment because of the flood surge in Southern England, staff are under even more pressure than usual.

Anyway, a lot will depend on the amount of work required to the property. If it's a major project then the repairs will probably be put to tender- this takes a long time, realistically at least two months. Not knowing the scale of the damage or the potential remedial works I can't comment on how likely this is, but underpinning works are very disruptive and I would not want to remain in a property while this is being carried out. Subsidence is defined as damage caused by ground movement, so if this claim is being looked at under this heading it's more than simply replacing a few timber joists.

You need to start asking about alternative accommodation if this is looking like a big job- your LL should have Loss of Rent on her policy so that would make up for any shortfall on her part. Make a bit of a song and dance, and remind your LL that your complaints can be used in her favour in an effort to get things moving. On a personal level, it's not ok to expect you to pay rent when you're effectively lost the use of that room, plus disruption of visits, monitoring works, the repairs....

TheCraicDealer Tue 04-Feb-14 23:26:50

Just realised the bay and the floor seem to be two separate issues....I wouldn't be staying, there are a lot of issues with this property and if she's not playing ball now with token rent rebates it'll only get worse. In our industry we usually take the broad view that if you still have bathing, cooking and sleeping facilities you're ok to stay. This changes on the scale of works and the amount of time they'll need to complete. But the fact is she's charging you for a flat with a living room which you can't use for protracted periods of time because of two separate issues which will require disruptive remedial works. She's chancing her arm.

cestlavielife Tue 04-Feb-14 23:48:33

It's wooden floor sitting on joists. With laminate on top. I think the laminate is balancing on one end of the room....couple years ago my son fell thru hole in carpeted bedroom..on lifting up carpet flooring was rotten except in some parts where plywood had been put down. They did come and fix that room.

I suspect a botch job was done also in lounge and laminate put on top ,of rotting boards... There is a gap of maybe two foot underneath the floorboards to the clay beneath. I can't live around works as no space for me and 3 dc. in the other rooms it's tight space as it is. And temporarily moving out is almost more disruptive than moving.. Ugh .

As is not my property it is as Craicdealer says... Ll is profiting while I am putting up. Have got my head around idea of moving and have seen one place which might work. Have to borrow tho for deposit and moving costs til get mine back ..

They been fairly quick moving forward on putting probes in to monitor the subsidence but ultimately that alone would mean having t move out in few months probably.... The added sinking floor issue makes it even more pressing. Given it could take a while for them to move things forward.

PigletJohn Wed 05-Feb-14 08:32:56

I think you should move, and not just temporarily. Wooden floors will hold together even when a house is very badly damaged, but if yours is sloping I would not trust it. It could fall or break apart. I would only be walking on it, cautiously, to fetch my belongings.

specialsubject Wed 05-Feb-14 13:17:32

your son fell through a hole in the floor two years ago and you are still there???? Give notice and GO!

LL won't be making profit, not that making profit is a crime as that is why we all work.

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