There’s A Burning Issue

, , , , | Working | February 26, 2018

(I submit a short list of things for maintenance to take care of in my apartment. The maintenance worker comes and starts going down the list, fixing things. All is well until the last item on the list.)

Maintenance: “It says there’s a problem with your washer?”

Me: “Yeah. When I use it, something smells like it’s burning.”

Maintenance: *sniffs* “I don’t smell anything.”

Me: “Well, yeah. I’m not doing laundry right now.”

Maintenance: “I can’t fix it if I can’t replicate the problem. You need to call me over when it smells.”

Me: “You guys have a two-day window; how am I supposed to time my laundry so that I’m actually washing when you get here?”

Maintenance: “Just call the office; tell them to send someone.”

Me: *if it’s in use, he can’t open it up to look in, anyway* “Can you take a look now? I’m a little concerned since, again, it smells like something is burning.”

Maintenance: “Nope, I don’t smell anything. I can’t help you. Was there anything else?”

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Environmentally Unaware

| Working | April 14, 2017

(I work in the financial section of a repairs and maintenance company, on behalf of a social housing company that offers rented accommodation to various demographics. Some of the tenants are, shall we say, ‘less respectable’ than others. One thing we do is so-called void properties, where we maintain empty houses until the next set of tenants move in. We get paid a set rate for repairs in each void property, with extra revenue if the void value is over £2000. On one of these voids, our cleaner found drug paraphernalia (heroin pots and needles) behind some kitchen units. She was removed from the property for her own safety and specialist cleaners called who do any drug removals for us. We also emailed the surveyor for our client responsible for maintaining this property, explaining to her the situation and the increased cost as a result. The surveyor in question has a habit of copying as many people into emails as she can in order to prove she’s right about things, even when she’s not. The email conversation went a little like this:)

Colleague: “Please see the attached schedule. I have upgraded the clean to a full environmental and removed the clear out as [Cleaner] came across needles and left over used cocaine bags. This has now increased the cost of the job. Please advise whether to proceed.”

Surveyor #1: “I have looked at the pictures with my colleagues and we cannot see any signs of needles or cocaine bags. I can see some tablets in sealed foil. I am not prepared to vary this schedule. There is no history with the former tenant of any such abuse.”

Colleague: “I have just spoken to [Cleaner] who has confirmed there are approx. 13 needles and heroin pots with residue in. She has been pulled from site. I can arrange for this environmental clean to be done on Friday as long as it can be agreed tomorrow.”

Surveyor #1: *here, she copies in the world and his uncle to ‘prove’ her point* “So why are the photos not showing what [Cleaner] is saying? There is no evidence of tenant substance abuse, and I am not prepared to vary this schedule.”

(At this point, one of the surveyor’s colleagues, who has just been made aware of the situation, replies to everyone.)

Surveyor #2: “Hiya, just spoke to the ex-tenant, who confirmed his ex-girlfriend is a heroin user. So it is most likely to come from her.”

(Needless to say, the job was varied correctly at this point, and the original surveyor decided to keep her mouth shut for a while…)

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