Landlord just informed me that sometimes my new "man cave" room floods...

Discussion in 'The Pub' started by Jason Calieri, May 1, 2015.

  1. Jason Calieri

    Jason Calieri Silver Supporting Member

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    My girlfriend and I just moved into a new place that we're pretty excited about, in part because there's a nice finished room in the basement that I was planning on turning into a "man cave." Computer for writing/recording music, guitars, pedals, amp, TV/stereo, Xbox, etc. All the good stuff.

    We're finishing moving in yesterday, and the landlord stops by to say hello. Then he says that we should just be careful about what we put in the man cave room, because, "very rarely," after a really hard rain, it can flood a bit. The carpet gets soaked, and they have to dry it out with an industrial fan. He says this has happened twice in the past five years.

    That's not too often, sure, but now every time it starts raining buckets I'm going to be freaking out about my stuff.

    SO, assuming we decide to stick around and just deal with it, which is likely, is there anything I can do to prevent the flooding in the future? Anything I can put down on the floor? If there's some sort of barrier that could be laid down, and then maybe just carpet over that, I'd probably consider it. I know nothing about building/carpentry, obviously, ha.

    Any tips/advice?

    EDIT: here's a pic of the room

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2015
  2. tenchijin2

    tenchijin2 Member

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    Sure, just excavate along the wall the leaks and install a French drain! Make sure all the gutters and downspouts are tied into it and that water doesn't run off into the ground near the basement.

    Super easy! <note sarcasm>
     
  3. spyeman

    spyeman Supporting Member

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    This guy has screwed you. I'm guessing you get some moisture in there on regular rains if it "floods" during a heavy rain. For me, the room would be considered useless. I'm guessing his "very rarely" turns into "quite often". Unless you would like to pay for whatever construction work is needed to correct the issue (which my guess is substantial otherwise the dumbass would have done it....), I would not feel comfortable putting anything of any value down there, especially guitars, etc as there will probably be a moisture/humidity issue. If I were you, I would claim to the landlord that he misrepresented the space and you should get a reduction in rent and an agreement that he should pay for all cleanup costs. Depends how much you like the rest of the space I guess determines how hard you push on this. Funny how he waited until you moved in to "casually mention" the issue. Would you have rented the place if he told you this before you signed a lease?
     
  4. Guitar Josh

    Guitar Josh Resident Curmudgeon Silver Supporting Member

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    Sounds like housing fraud. Get a lawyer.
     
  5. bayAreaDude

    bayAreaDude Member

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    If he didn't tell you this prior to signing the lease, I'd ask him to sign something voiding the lease and just move. There can be mold and stuff. Totally unacceptable and not fit to be renting out. He needs to fix the problem before he can continue renting this place.
     
  6. Jason Calieri

    Jason Calieri Silver Supporting Member

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    Honestly, probably not. The extra finished room was a pretty important part of us committing to this place.

    I hadn't even thought about an ongoing moisture issue down there, aside from the flooding. If that's the case, and I really can't use the room like I intended, I would definitely consider breaking the lease and leaving. Assuming he wouldn't pay for a proper fix, that is.

    So bummed about this! Argh.
     
  7. bayAreaDude

    bayAreaDude Member

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    Proceed carefully - you already know this guy is dishonest. And being a landlord, he's probably more familiar with the legal issues involved than the average tenant. A lot of cities have free legal advice for renters that could advise you the best way to get out of this so that the landlord can't come after you.
     
  8. Trotter

    Trotter Supporting Member

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    I'd be a little worried about mold....

    Tell the landlord to install a French drain asap!
     
  9. TRTrex

    TRTrex Member

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    Like was mentioned, there could be a mold issue.

    If the landlord "fixes" this place after it floods with just a fan, I would be very concerned about what is under that carpet, and behind the walls.
     
  10. Jason Calieri

    Jason Calieri Silver Supporting Member

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    It doesn't smell moldy or musty at all, for whatever that's worth. And it sounds like all of the melting snow from our epic snowstorms here in Boston didn't cause a problem recently, either.

    I just emailed the landlord to get more specific info about the problem and how bad it was when it flooded those couple times.

    I'm going to poke around tonight and look for any signs of moisture or mold.
     
  11. tenchijin2

    tenchijin2 Member

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    I had a basement with this problem. It flooded once or twice before I figured it out. I had a leaking gutter that was allowing water to pile up in front of the foundation around the basement wall.
    That said, it dried OK and there was some mildew damage to the carpet. But if it's only done it twice and has dried since I wouldn't be too worried about ongoing moisture.
     
  12. fjblair

    fjblair Silver Supporting Member

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    Sometimes when there is epic rainfall below grade things can" flood", it's common where I live and not predictable in many instances. Sounds to me like the landlord did you a favor.
     
  13. Jason Calieri

    Jason Calieri Silver Supporting Member

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    If it was unfinished I wouldn't care so much, but being a finished room I (rightfully!) assumed we'd be able to use it. It's living space. Neither the realtor nor the landlord made any mention of flooding until after we'd signed the lease and moved in.
     
  14. Jason Calieri

    Jason Calieri Silver Supporting Member

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    Also, the town I just moved to? Watertown. You can't make this stuff up, folks.
     
  15. racecarracecar

    racecarracecar Member

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    If you are going to stay there get a dehumidifier and have your gear elevated. Maybe even elevated, with wheels too, so you can move your stuff out quickly if it pours.
     
  16. spyeman

    spyeman Supporting Member

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    Wow, don't know what to say about that. Kinda like a thief who broke into your house, stole all your ****, but called you as a favor to tell you he left the back door unlocked.
     
  17. cmerch

    cmerch Member

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    "Hey, sometimes that room floods..."
    "That's no problem. Sometimes, I pay my rent."
     
  18. T Dizz

    T Dizz Member

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    Get more ladders
     
  19. traviswalk

    traviswalk In the Great State Gold Supporting Member

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    In our prior house in NJ it was prone to water seeping through the foundation during big storms when the water table got higher than the basement. What I did to remedy this was have all my amps raised off the ground with the first bottom part of the plastic shelving units from Home Depot:

    http://www.homedepot.com/p/HDX-5-Sh...ilated-Storage-Shelving-Unit-128974/100006678

    This gets the amps at least six inches or so off the ground. I would also keep my studio computer on a stand so that it's not on the ground and also bought fans and a de-humidifier just in case. If the landlord can do more fine, but agree with others that he gave you the heads up and you can plan around it. I never had any water damage from the floor, had more water damage when a steam pipe in the ceiling cracked and leaked on my amps, that was a bummer!
     
  20. spyeman

    spyeman Supporting Member

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    Lots of folks missing the point here. He is selling a known defective product and informing the buyer of the defect after the sale is completed. No different than selling a guitar, taking the cash, then telling the buyer, oh by the way, the bridge pickup kinda goes in and out and a couple of the frets pop out....I'm sure there are places to rent in the area that have no flooding issue. The landlord did not do him a favor or a nice gesture by telling him after the lease is signed the bottom room can and has flooded - a total case of misrepresentation!! Buyer should be able to get out of the lease and find a non-flooding place without injury or damage. But the nice favor giving landlord let him move in before breaking the news. Bait and switch!!
     

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