Thursday, July 5, 2007

It Came From The Attic

Long ago, in those halcyon days when we were still blissfully ignorant of the just how much work this house needed, we had the requisite house inspection. The inspector, frequently thwarted in his task by the POs' furniture filling every spare inch of space, still managed to present us with a Binder Of Ill Tidings about hazardous carpets, damaged walls, extension cords, unsecured toilets, etc. Scattered among these items and others was the frequent observation of, "Due to the cluttered conditions of $AREA, a complete visual inspection was not possible." When it came to the attic, "cluttered" was upgraded to "extremely cluttered", and he was unable to enter at all.

Lulled into believing that the month between inspection and closing would give the POs enough time to move all of their crap out, we were unprepared for The Stuff. (I was completely unprepared, living two hours away and not setting foot into the house until after closing.)

Closing time came and went; M generously gave the POs several more days to move The Stuff; they put a bit of money in an escrow account should it arise that The Stuff was not completely removed. It seemed like a reasonable amount of money, given what was left on the property and the complete and utter naive belief that normal people have - to wit, that other people are good and kind and don't leave heaps and heaps of filthy, flea-ridden shit behind for the rest of us to clean up. (I don't think I've mentioned the fleas before...)

However...both M and the real estate agent somehow managed to forget about the attic - the attic filled floor to rafter with what turned out to be the leavings not only of the POs but of the PPOs as well.

The escrow fund will not cover us renting more than the one dumpster already filled and taken away, so M has been hauling a bit out at a time and putting it by the curb. (Unsurprisingly, the agent has been unable to get the POs to sign the necessary form for the money for the dumpster to be transferred.) Occasionally, some crazy great people stop by and give our piles of crap glorious attic items a new home.

Here are some of our finds that are not old holiday crap, broken glasses, knives, encyclopedias, beer, old mail and tax returns, curtains, curtains, curtains, more curtains, or ancient vacuums:

Accordion. Might work - I attempted to play it and it made horrid, soul-killing, neighborhood-scaring sounds. I believe this is normal. Complete with hokey velvet-lined case.

Car clock. Classy!

One of several ice skates. This one is lined with fake fur.

A rather nice little sidetable. Currently occupied by some of my plants.

Lovely (um) vintage lamp and one of two blue mystery barrels.


Anonymous said...

Hang in there, you are doing a great job!!

I became house slave to a little house across the bridge. I spent most every Saturday night for months crying because of some horrible new surprise that I discovered while cleaning, stripping wallpaper or looking in walls. Thankfully, I didn't have to deal with any pet damage, unless the POs considered the termite farm "pets".

It's a couple years later now... a few rooms are 95% complete, and others like the bath have been band-aided until I can afford to get to them. The outside of the house doesn't quite give the impression that bums live here anymore. I've actually hit the point where I enjoy the house and feel proud of what I've done. My neighbors see the improvements and have been complimentary and encouraging. (I hope that your neighbors are as nice.)

Anyway, my point wasn't to babble about me. You may feel like you've bitten off more than you can chew. Family members may have asked you what on Earth you were thinking--and inquire as to whether or not you can return the house. But it WILL get better, and you ARE doing a great job!!

- Tara

P.S. A day will come when you're tired of stripping paint from wood. When that day comes, call Dip N Strip...they're in Bucks County.

Suileeka said...

Our neighbors seem nice. One of them mowed (with great effort) our 10 inch-high lawn with his mower before we got ours. He's also given us various bits of information about the house's history and the POs.

Happily, family members are thus far supportive and interested in our progress.

Anonymous said...

I love your blog! It's inspiring reading to see all the work you're accomplishing. Too bad you couldn't have had an escrow fund to hold the PO's responsible for not moving their stuff or cleaning the place before they left.