Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Please help us? Every little dollar counts!!

We need to get mold testing done on our items and in our apartment to make sure our kids are ok. The problem is, it is very expensive and we don't have that kind of dough in the bank. If we can get every person we know to donate $1 we can get this done right. We've been more than cooperative with our complex and they are trying to evict us. Neither of our parents are currently in a position to help, Katie has had to close her shop, and Matt has had to take off work. If you know us at all, you know this is a last resort, but we need your help!!

Here is the back story:

Tuesday, Dec. 28th, 2010 around 10:30pm
We notice some water underneath the trash can, on the carpet in the kitchen. I think maybe the kids spilled something and put a towel down to try and clean up. A few hours later the spot is bigger.

Wednesday, Dec. 29th 2010
Notify Manager (office manager) of the problem and she calls out Orchard Plumbing, who come out and cut 5 holes in the wall (and ceiling) to try and assess the leak. He informs Scott (the apartment maintenance man) that the cabinets need to be taken out so that he can access the pipes in the wall and he leaves. The carpet cleaning company (Ultimate Choice) comes out and removes some of the damaged padding and sucks up the excess water. Everyone leaves it at that.

Thursday, Dec. 30th 2010
Scott comes back with the district maintenance supervisor to remove our cabinets. They decide it will be just as easy to cut a hole in the upper cabinets above the refrigerator and a few more exploratory holes. They can not seem to pinpoint a leak in any of the pipes and they go to the roof, where they discover something has collapsed and that the water has leaked down through the walls around the opening where the hoods connect in a “T“ shape. They assume this is the problem and there is nothing they can do to extract the water so we “deal with it”. The plumber also agrees it is a roof leak and leaves. The water now starts coming though the kitchen from underneath the stove. The carpet and house are smelling musty. (Ultimate Choice comes out to remove water). We are given a $50 gift certificate to Tony’s Pizza in Boulder City and a 3 day ($75) rent concession which we use in addition to our $50 Christmas decoration prize. Rent is paid in the amount of $790 via money order.

Friday, Dec. 31st 2010
The water has progressed through the kitchen from under the stove and we call Manager on her personal cell phone to have Ultimate Choice come out and do another extraction.

Saturday, Jan 1st 2011
The water progresses all day, Manager again sends out Ultimate Choice to extract water from the kitchen and dining room. She also sends out the plumber to see if water is coming from underneath the stove, again he says it is just roof water and with 4 days of rain we should expect it to continue (essentially “wait it out“). Manager purchases a Shap-Vac Air MoverÔ and brings it to the apartment to help dry out the sopping wet carpet and kitchen floor. She also beings over food from her personal pantry for dinner.

Sunday, Jan 2nd 2011
We keep the shop vac pointed into the kitchen to keep the water at bay, which works temporarily, or until the deafening noise becomes too much to handle. The carpet is still wet in the corner by the kitchen, but it seems the leak has slowed some.

Monday, Jan. 3rd 2011
Ultimate Choice comes out again to extract water. They point the shop vac underneath the carpet and blow water into the rest of the room because the leak is continuous. We are still waiting it out. I ask Manager when the roofers are coming and she says she will get back to me when she knows, that there is no one in the office (roofers) that can give her an answer. Scott comes out to patch the holes from the previous week, but leaves the one over the fridge open.

Tuesday, Jan. 4th 2011
Ultimate Choice comes out to extract more water.

Wednesday, Jan. 5th 2011
Ultimate Choice comes out to extract more water. We are finally told the roofers will be out to look at the leak on the 10th (Monday).

Thursday, Jan. 6th 2011
Ultimate Choice comes out to extract more water

Friday, Jan. 7th 2011
Manager sees that the water has not stopped coming into the apartment and brings out another plumbing company (J and J). This plumber tells us that the leak is coming from the drain that runs under our sink and is leaking up through the sub flooring after he cut a small hole underneath the sink. He explains that the water is finding the path of least resistance and is coming up through studs driven into the ground and leaking into our apartment. He takes some pictures (as do I, finally) and he leaves at 3:30pm. Ultimate Choice comes out and extracts more water.

Saturday, Jan. 8th, 2011
Ultimate Choice comes out and extracts more water and removes the rotting tack strip. RJ and Aubrey spend the night elsewhere.

Sunday, Jan 9th, 2011
Ultimate Choice comes out (in the late evening, after dark) and extracts more water. Everyone in the house (Aubrey, 2 years old; RJ, 6 years old; Katie, 29 years old; Matt, 37 years old) begins suffering from a stomach sickness.

Monday, Jan 10th 2011 (our son’s seventh birthday and our wedding anniversary)
J and J plumbing returns to our home with the district maintenance supervisor, they cut small holes to the right of the kitchen in the dining room to see if they can locate the leak. They determine the water is flowing from the left and cut a large hole behind the refrigerator. The maintenance supervisor goes to the upstairs unit and turns their kitchen sink on. They determine the leak is coming from a large diameter pipe running behind the refrigerator. The pipe is cut and replaced and the maintenance supervisor and plumber from J and J leave the premises. The roofer comes to the door and asks to inspect the unit, which I refuse as the leak is not related to the roof (as had been determined). Ultimate Choice is present and are in the process of removing the under padding from the carpet in the dining room area. Manager enters the building and goes into the kitchen. She asks one of the workers from Ultimate Choice to use his hose to suction some of the water in the open cavity. It is seen that the water is continuing to flow from the left, so she again calls J and J plumbing to come back out again. In the meantime, a worker from Ultimate Choice removes some of the dry wall along with the padding from the carpet and I (Katie) notice there are some mold spots. I ask him to leave the drywall on the porch. The plumber enters the unit next door (C7) to determine if the leak is coming from there. They enter our apartment again and cut another hole above the cabinet in the kitchen and fix another leak. All holes are left open and nothing else is said. I (Katie) go to the office on the way to get food for everyone (who are all still sick) and ask Manager about mold, in general. I ask if it has anything to do with the water and she tells me the smell is mildew, not mold. She also informs me that if the mold were of the dangerous variety, both the plumber and the maintenance supervisor would have cordoned off the area, put on masks and gloves and told us to leave. When I return, she asks me to come into the office. She and Assistant Managerberly (the assistant manager) tell me I need to take $100 and leave the apartment immediately as a precaution. I inform them that I just can not deal with it at the moment and leave. They both come to our apartment at 4:43pm and tell us we have to sign a waiver to stay in the apartment for the evening. Feeling like we had no choice, we signed the waiver. Matt was too ill to leave the bed all day, much less collect items for an indefinite leave from the house. In the waiver we signed was a bit about having Dennis from Cam Air come out to inspect for mold at 10:00am the next day

Tuesday, Jan 11th 2011
10:00am came and went and there was no call from the office, nor was there a call from Dennis. Dennis finally arrives around 2:00pm and walks into the house. He looks into the lower cavity in the dining room wall and as he is walking out, I point him to the bit of drywall on our patio and he informs me that it is just the common mold that grows on bread and leaves. The whole visit lasted less than 3 minutes. Assuming everything was fine (due to bread type mold) we continued on with our day. Around 4:45pm again, Manager and Assistant Manager came to the house and told us we had no option but to leave the apartment this time, since we had reported mold and it was precautionary on their part (and part of the law). She forced a $100 bill into my (Katie’s) hand. She then told us we had to move to the unit next door as soon as possible (starting Wednesday, January 12th, 2011) and that it would be cleaned and patched the following morning. We were offered $200 to pay our moving expenses (but the issue was never pressed further). We asked to be let out of our lease completely, which her management company refused (we were told that we would be responsible for all fines and penalties related to breaking the lease, but that it was our choice). Again, we felt we were had no other options and told her we would do what we had to do. We left the apartment and decided to seek legal counsel. We did not spend the $100 bill we were given

Wednesday, Jan. 12th 2010
We collect a copy of our lease agreement and the waiver we signed on the 10th and proceed to the lawyers office to discuss our options regarding the whole situation. When we returned home, the hole above the refrigerator had been sealed (finally) and there was a 3-day Constables Notice on our door to vacate the premises.


  1. wow. just wow. I'm so sorry for all this! Have you guys been to the doctor? (yet another expense you probably can't afford right now). What a story. I hope my contribution helps.

  2. Please let me know how I can help, where to send $ to

  3. Holy mold, Batman! So sorry to hear of all the trouble you are experiencing. I gave a bit of a donation and would love to give more, but we are experiencing a parallel situation – the Explorer needs a new engine, so of course the Jeep decided it needs a new transmission, and the Flu just won’t let go.

    My husband is a maintenance supervisor for a large complex in Vegas. Let me know if you want to pick his brain about industry standards or housing laws.

    Good Luck!