Because of Reasons, Mr. Blues and I rented an apartment sight-unseen. We moved in last week. It is generally quite nice, but the balcony/deck absolutely reeks of urine. Evidently a previous tenant seriously neglected her dogs (and potentially cats? it smells like cat pee to me) and they used the balcony as a bathroom. It absolutely reeks. How can we and or the management company fix this?
The balcony is really more of a small deck; it's slightly elevated and made of wood decking material. As far as I can tell, I can't access the space underneath it. There are small gaps between the boards and visible planking running underneath. There was enough urine on the deck that it ate through the paint leaving several large unfinished spots.
The smell is bad on a cool, cloudy day and absolutely overpowering on a sunny one. When we moved in, I washed it with Mr. Clean floor solution and rinsed with lots of water, which didn't help at all. I've been applying copious amounts of OUT! Hard Surface
, which seems to be helping somewhat but there's still a smell. Also, the stuff is fairly expensive and I'm tired of buying it and spending my time on this, and I'd like to be able to use the deck during the short summer we have up here.
The management company has offered to prime with Kilz and then re-paint (though they seem to be in no hurry to actually do it). Will this be sufficient? I'm concerned about the gaps in the planking and whatever is going on under the decking. Also, is it reasonable to ask for a reduction in rent until they get it done, as the outdoor space, a big selling point for the apartment, is unusable? Finally, one of the reasons we chose a pet-friendly apartment is that we're hoping to adopt a dog in the reasonably near future. I'm concerned that, even if we get the deck to the point where it's ok for humans, future dog will still be able to smell the urine and want to use the deck as well-- any truth to that?