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Dear PoPville: Housing Issue – “Notice of Hazardous Condition” Served

by Prince Of Petworth May 15, 2012 at 11:00 am 27 Comments

Photo by PoPville flickr user dullshick

Dear PoPville,

My wife and I rent a very cosmetically nice English Basement apartment. With a lot of space, UTILITIES INCLUDED, a front and rear yard, 2 car garage we share with our upstairs neighbors and low rent, we have been here for two years.

The kicker:
Every now and then we face typical basement issues, which we’ve worked through with the landlord (whom resides in NY) and the property mgr, until now. Last Wednesday our hot water was off. We contacted the property mgr whom discovered it was actually the gas, hence no hot water. The utilities for gas were in a rear over $750! Like before, we contacted the landlord and after scheduling an appointment with the Gas company, had someone in today to set things straight.

It didn’t go as planned. The gas rep served us with notice that the house was under hazardous condition and he couldn’t turn the gas back on. He explained that flumes from the water heater were not attached and other parts of the flumes were “too sectional” as he put it. He couldn’t understand why the plumber would have permitted installation of this sort let alone activation. Apparently for the last two years my wife and I (as well as our pets) have been breathing deadly carbon monoxide gas. He told us we were lucky. And that sometimes its good when something like this happens and the tenants find out the LARGER issue. He said we have been very lucky.

Where do we go from here? Whom do we contact first? Second? Any legal advice needed? etc.

We need ANY advice on tenant rights.

The OP needs to alert his upstairs neighbors and get a carbon monoxide detector immediately. If it registers he will need to alert the fire department and stay with friends or at a hotel until the issue is resolved. The OP has already checked the office of the tenant advocate, do you guys have any other general advice?


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