A young mother whose moisture-ridden ceiling collapsed just inches from her has criticized her local housing association for failing to address a leak from her neighbor’s apartment sooner.
Daisy Lovering, 22, first noticed damp in her ground floor home in Neath Port Talbot, South Wales, in early February before water started seeping from the property above.
But she claims several phone calls to Tai Tarian – one of the largest housing associations in Wales, which owns more than 9,000 properties in the ward – have not resolved the situation.
In the early hours of Feb. 25, Ms Lovering said she got out of bed to investigate the progressively worsening dripping sound coming from her bathroom, as an avalanche of sodden drywall, fiberglass insulation and wood came crashing down.
‘At the beginning of this month I started complaining about the damp problem on the walls of my bathroom,’ says Ms Lovering, who has been living in the property on The Gardens in Ystalyfera with her young daughter Darcey for the past two years.
Daisy Lovering (pictured with her daughter), 22, first noticed damp in her ground floor home in Neath Port Talbot, South Wales, in early February before water started seeping from the property above
In the early hours of Feb. 25, Ms Lovering said she got out of bed to investigate the progressively worsening dripping sound coming from the hallway, as an avalanche of sodden drywall, fiberglass insulation and wood came crashing down.
The student personal trainer added, “But after telling Tai Tarian to let me know when they’re coming over so I could make sure I was available, they called while I was at work.
“Then it started dripping—slowly at first, but enough to worry about. But whenever I tried to get someone back to look at it, I was told appointments were few and I had to wait.
‘At that time the drip just got worse and worse, the only saving grace was that it ended up in the bath itself. So at least I didn’t have to keep putting buckets out to keep the place from flooding.
“However, the smell in the bathroom was horrendous and I was worried it was going to affect Darcey’s health. Then, quite late into the weekend, I got up to look at it and – ‘Bang!’ – the plot came down right in front of me.
“It landed right in front of my feet and I can’t imagine what would have happened if Darcey had taken a bath a few hours earlier. The mess was unreal – it filled the bath and toilet, practically broke the shower curtain rail and was all over the floor and against the walls.’
Ms Lovering claimed she called the housing association’s 24-hour helpline but received no response.
While a cleanup team has since come out to fix the damage and plug the hole in the ceiling, the leaks have returned.
She explained: ‘The flat upstairs is privately owned, so the guy who rents it says I have to wait for his landlord to sort things out. Meanwhile, he only turns on his water when he really needs to, such as when he wants to take a shower or flush the toilet.
But if he does, the leak will start all over again. I don’t know how much longer I can go on like this and I’m angry that it could all have been avoided if it had been dealt with sooner.’
Ms Lovering claimed she called the housing association’s 24-hour helpline but received no response. While a cleanup team has since come out to fix the damage and plug the hole in the ceiling, the leak has returned
The collapsed ceiling above the shower in Mrs. Lovering’s building
Gemma Fouracre, Head of Property and Land Services for Tai Tarian, said: ‘Miss Lovering first reported a problem in early February. At that time we had not yet been notified of a leak.
“We had planned a visit with her, but had to reschedule. Agents attended a second time, but were denied entry – we had been unable to obtain telephone contact.
“Miss Lovering contacted us again to say she thought there might be a leak in an upstairs apartment, which is privately owned. A visit was scheduled for this week, but unfortunately the damage to the ceiling occurred over the weekend.
“We responded to a call on Sunday about this and made the bathroom safe. We are sorry this happened and our planning team are trying to contact Miss Lovering to book the bathroom repair work as soon as possible.’
MailOnline has contacted Tai Tarian for further comment.