House is full of toxic fumes from neighbor's renovation -- what to do?
December 4, 2012 7:20 PM Subscribe
The workers renovating the unoccupied twin (semi-attached) house adjoining ours have been using various solvents of unknown origin. Whatever they are, the smell is terrible. I peeked through the windows of the house and it looks like they might be sealing the floors with polyeurothane. They're not ventilating the house and they close all the windows at night. Due to health concerns we have left the house and are staying at a hotel for the night. I would like to know what risks, if any, there exist from these kinds of fumes, what I can do to resolve this, and whether it's at all possible to get some kind of compensation from the house's owner.
posted by Deathalicious to Grab Bag (35 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I'm pretty upset about this. This is not the first evening we have had problems with fumes. We even called the fire department once because it genuinely smelled like a gas leak coming in through the shared wall into our basement. I suspect that whoever owns this house is trying to flip it as cheaply as possible and is going with cheap and fast drying (and therefore not low-VOC paints, primers, etc.)
We've tolerated the loud noise and dealt with the fumes as best as we can in the past, including opening all of the windows and using every fan in the house, along with a window fan. This time it just didn't work: the fumes are everywhere and smells genuinely toxic.
Just to be clear: a twin home is basically two mirror-image homes built into a single building with a shared separating wall. It's very common in the neighborhood where we live.