Renovation Nightmares

Canada
March 26, 2007 1:24pm CST
We moved into our current home in the summer of 1994. Before our move in date we did extensive renovations, as the home we'd purchased was a 'power of sale,' and required lots of work. After a number of years, things started to suffer from the inevitable wear and tear, and last summer things 'almost literally' came crashing down around us. A good friend of ours was checking out our upstairs toilet, which had a problem that involved it running continually. It got to the point that we'd turn the valve off underneath, and only turn it back on to flush. There was also always dampness on the bathroom floor, as well as black mould that had gotten onto the walls and ceiling. Sometimes when the shower was used, bits of plaster would drop down onto our living room carpet. My friend asked a friend of his (an acquaintance of ours), to come over and take a look at the situation. This man is a professional contractor, and what he found wasn't good. We ended up going on vacation for a week, and in that time our whole bathroom had to be ripped out, and redone completely, including new fixtures, tile etc. He found that the floor was completely rotten under the vanity, toilet etc., and we were in danger of the entire thing caving in, and ending up in our living room. Our living room ceiling had dropped 8 inches or so, from water damage, and had to be replaced. They took a look at our wiring too, and found that our dishwasher was installed incorrectly, and we were in danger of an electrical fire, as well as the possibility of getting a serious electric shock, when turning the dishwasher on. We now have a beautiful new bathroom, which I'm very thankful for, as well as the living room ceiling, and a 'new used' dishwasher, among other things, that is safe. The reason all of this happened was that I had no idea about the urgency of the situation, and being a single parent, didn't have the means for all of this. A wonderful group of our dear friends got together and did the whole thing for us, as inexpensively as possible, so that we'd be safe. They remain to this day 'our angels,' in a time of need. Do you have a similar story, or a renovation nightmare, or a disaster waiting to happen? I invite you to share your experiences with everyone here. Who knows, some of the other myLot users may have some good suggestions for you.
1 person likes this
3 responses
• Ireland
27 Mar 07
Sounds to me like the builder who did my renovations went into hiding in Canada and did your renovations while he was there. To cut a long story short, I had my attic converted to four bedrooms and a bathroom. Well even before that work was completed, our ceilings below started caving in on us and when I got an architect out to inspect it, he said our house was now a dangerous building and it wouldn't be too long before the roof would come down as all the supports had been removed. I had paid the first guy over €26,000 to do the renovation and I then had to pay another firm €30,000 to pull everything apart and start the job from scratch. I got such a turn against the house, so after everything was completed, I sold it and bought a new one.
3 people like this
• Canada
28 Mar 07
Thanks for figuring out what happened with my townhouse, and why it was in such bad shape ... imagine the both of us ending up with the same builder (ha,ha). Your situation sounds as bad, or even worse than mine, given the amount of money you ended up spending. I can understand why you decided to sell, and trust that your current home is a safe haven, and will remain in good repair.
1 person likes this
• Canada
10 Apr 07
ohhhh yes i have run into this lately myself. soft copper being used to transfer hot and cold water deteriorates very fast as i have found out. the leak destroyed the ceiling and floor of my older home 6 weeks ago. lucky for me i had insurance to cover some of the repairs. but i can't afford a contractor so i guess i'll have to make the repairs myself. oohhh well. do you think the contractors cut some corners?
• Canada
10 Apr 07
I'm very sorry to hear that this happened to you. After the mess we had, I cringe when I hear of anyone else's home repair nightmare. As for the cost, I can relate to that too, as unfortunately, some of these necessary repairs can be cost prohibitive, and therefore, as in my case, the urgency of the situation goes unrecognized. There's a good chance that your contractors cut some corners, as I've certainly heard of that happening before, but it'd be best to have this checked out by an expert to tell you for sure. Maybe you know of a friend etc. who can help you with this. As for my townhouse, it was built in the 70's, and I know of others in our complex who've had similar situations with plumbing etc. I wish you all the best in getting this mess taken care of.
1 person likes this
@winterose (39918)
• Canada
26 Mar 07
yep I do have a bathroom story myself, we had just moved in and my daughter in law's toe went right through the floor. I called the landlord and he sent his handyman around, but the handyman was taking his sweet ole time. The whole floor was ripped up and the walls were bare. He managed to get the floor back but there was still holes in the bottom of the walls and winter was coming on, He seemed to have stopped working. I had to call the landlord to tell him, then he came back, worked two days and had a heart attack. We finally got it all fixed though.
1 person likes this
• Canada
28 Mar 07
These type of problems are very scary, and I certainly can relate to this. I've heard of so many people whose renovations have ground to a halt for no good reason. I'm glad that you were able to get everything fixed before the winter. I've had experiences with landlords who make themselves scarce when there's work to be done as well.