Don’t Wait for the Important to Become Urgent

It’s been a hell of a weekend.

Lemme me explain.

No. There is too much. Lemme sum up.

We’re moving out of our apartment. We’re not sure exactly when we’re moving, or where we’re moving to yet, but it turns out by not fixing the roof during the dry weather – when they had the chance – the building management company lost any hope of keeping this apartment habitable.

Over the rains this weekend, leaking doors and a couple dripping lights turned into heavier leaks and more leaky lights, and a few spots of wet plasterboard became many spots, growing quickly. We disassembled the “not leaking yet” former-guest-bedroom-cum-office and turned it back into a bedroom.

A roofing contractor came out yesterday (on a Sunday, so you know that cost someone a pretty penny) – looked at the interior, went out onto the terraces and climbed onto the main roof in the dumping rain, and gave us his professional opinion:

“The building needs a new roof, all this decking has to be taken up to replace the roof under it, and to do any of this, it has to be dry.”

Of course the building management couldn’t take him at his word, so today a building surveyor came out, looked at all the same stuff (but did it in the dry) and gave his professional opinion.

“The building needs a new roof, all this decking has to be taken up to replace the roof under it, and to do any of this, it has to be dry.”

It won’t be dry enough, for long enough, for months.

So it’s time for us to beat a hasty retreat.

So we’re working on figuring out where we (two humans, two cats) can go in the short term while we look for a new place. We’ll be out looking at flats tomorrow afternoon and working through the logistics of getting our selves and our belongings moved out of an increasingly leaky flat. And figuring out who’s going to pay for it (hint: not us).

The owner of the apartment wil be left with an empty, decaying apartment. And unless they can find a way to at least stabalize the roof and contain water once we leave, the water will undoubetdly affect the units below us.

They’ve turned a medium sized problem into a huge problem by ignoring it.

Fixing the roof was important over the summer, but it wasn’t urgent. The pandemic certainly didn’t make roof work easy, but the building sites in view of our apartment kept working through most of the summer, so it was possible.

Now, thanks to waiting for the bad weather to return, fixing the roof is urgent and has become effectively impossible.

If this were my property, and I was a customer of the building management firm, I’d be lawyering up.

But it’s not my property, so my goal is to extricate us from this accelerating fluster-cluck.

Stay tuned.

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