I don't want to bleach the state land, thanks.
December 20, 2012 5:46 PM Subscribe
We recently moved to a new house and our washing machine hook-up does not drain properly. Instead of fixing it, our landlord keeps being pushy about how we should just drain it into the state land behind the house.
posted by Nattie to Law & Government (27 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
We're in La Crescenta, CA. My husband and I have told our landlord multiple times now that draining onto the state land is unacceptable to us, but when we do this, the landlord gives us some vague platitude about fixing the drain sometime in the future, which has yet to materialize. He's had about a month to do this, and we've been in contact with him every four days or so, so we've heard this "sometime soon" excuse many times now and never thought it would go on this long.
This is getting ridiculous, and I am irritated that we were told the house had working washer and dryer hook-ups when it essentially doesn't and the landlord has had a month to fix this and hasn't.
We have gotten more forceful and unsympathetic when he gives us the vague reply, so we don't need help asserting ourselves. What I do want is some concrete information about the following so we can tell him very clearly what the laws are. I'm not sure he actually does know what the laws are, so that would be important -- we had to buy our own carbon monoxide detector even though the law says the landlord has to provide one -- but there's also the possibility that he does know the laws and hopes we don't.
1. What is the law in California about draining washer machine water onto state land? I would guess this is illegal, and we don't want to do it regardless, but if it were illegal it would be an easier conversation. And if he continues to insist we do something illegal, it might make it easier to break our lease if necessary.
2. What recourse do we have for being told that there are working washer and dryer hook-ups when the washer hook-up doesn't work? What rights do tenants have when a landlord lies (whether he considers it a lie or not) about these things? I am considering asking for money off our rent for the month (months? ugh) we're unable to do laundry but if this doesn't get fixed I don't want to pay the price we're paying to live here. We specifically wanted a place where we could use our washer and dryer and if I had known we couldn't, I wouldn't have even looked at this place.
I don't think our landlord is intentionally being sleazy, he's just very old, losing his memory and health, and it seems to make him flaky and unable to manage his properties effectively. We're sympathetic to him as a person and don't think he's a bad guy, but he definitely does not seem to have accepted that he can't do things he used to do by himself. He will talk about his failing health so he's aware, sort of, but does not actually hire people to fix the problems and keeps trying to do stuff he says he used to do. It's also frankly starting to feel manipulative and unprofessional when we ask him to fix something and get a sob story instead of action. It doesn't seem reasonable for him to expect us to just go without laundry for months because he can't manage his properties anymore, but this is going to be a very awkward conversation and I don't want to get into anything contentious so early into the relationship with this guy. He's very nice, he just doesn't do his job and wants us to take shortcuts that we feel are absurd. If we could keep the conversation purely on "this is the law, comply with the law or we will take these legal actions" at least we'll get a resolution (either it's fixed, or we leave) and not a deflection.
Thanks for any information!