movin' frustrations

AldurAldur Juniper ModeratorMember Posts: 1,460
So I'm finally up in Edmonton Canada and had planned on sleeping in my house that I've rented for about a month but haven't had a chance to live it yet...

But so the wife and I travel up here and called the land lord to confirm to them that we would be there last night, they said sure, c'mon up, well meet you there...

Then about an hour later, I get a call from the landlord letting me know that the main pipe to the house is frozen and there is no water going to the house. They then suggested getting a hotel.

Well, now it's the second day and it's a holiday here so that means nothing can be done, and another night at the hotel..... To me it feels like the landlord should pay for my stay at the hotel since this is their screwup, I called 2-3 weeks ago letting them know I would be up here at this time.

Anybody have experience with situations like this or have any advice on how to go about it?
"Bribe is such an ugly word. I prefer extortion. The X makes it sound cool."

-Bender

Comments

  • dynamikdynamik Banned Posts: 12,314 ■■■■■■■■□□
    How about you buy some beer and take it easy, eh?

    My upstairs neighbor just let his pipe freeze and my place got soaked, so that doesn't sound that bad in comparison icon_lol.gif

    It does sound like an honest mistake and not just negligence, so I'd try to work it out civilly. Maybe just ask for a discount on rent for that month or something.
  • skrpuneskrpune Member Posts: 1,409
    I say call the Landlord & Tenant Advisory board for your area...here's the link for the Edmonton office - if you give them a call, they can advise you of your rights & whether you can/should make a stink about this...

    I called them ALL the time in Ontario. My landlords were turds and they constantly tried to get away with stuff, but would always back down when I quoted from the tenant rights act. Not sure if you want to go the tough guy route just yet, but it might not be a bad idea to "nonchalantly" let your landlord know that you're up on what your rights are.

    By the way, what does your paperwork say about your move in date and what date did/will you start paying? Have you put down a deposit? If you're technically supposed to be staying there now (having either paid already or if you have a lease/contract stating that by now you should have taken possession) and there is some health/safety issue that's preventing you from staying there, then that will be the ammo you need to try to get your landlord to pony up for the hotel bill.

    Oh, and congrats on the move! I'm assuming all went well at the border? When do you get your stuff delivered?

    EDIT: by the way, here's the link for the general Alberta tenant/landlord rights site...has some good info about your basic rights, might be able to help you answer a few questions...
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  • AldurAldur Juniper Moderator Member Posts: 1,460
    dynamik wrote: »
    How about you buy some beer and take it easy, eh?

    My upstairs neighbor just let his pipe freeze and my place got soaked, so that doesn't sound that bad in comparison icon_lol.gif

    It does sound like an honest mistake and not just negligence, so I'd try to work it out civilly. Maybe just ask for a discount on rent for that month or something.

    holy crap, ya having the pipes burst on top of you would suck, definitely worse then my situation.

    well, come to find out it was definite negligence, the water was actually not turned on..... sigh....icon_rolleyes.gif
    skrpune wrote: »
    I say call the Landlord & Tenant Advisory board for your area...here's the link for the Edmonton office - if you give them a call, they can advise you of your rights & whether you can/should make a stink about this...

    I called them ALL the time in Ontario. My landlords were turds and they constantly tried to get away with stuff, but would always back down when I quoted from the tenant rights act. Not sure if you want to go the tough guy route just yet, but it might not be a bad idea to "nonchalantly" let your landlord know that you're up on what your rights are.

    By the way, what does your paperwork say about your move in date and what date did/will you start paying? Have you put down a deposit? If you're technically supposed to be staying there now (having either paid already or if you have a lease/contract stating that by now you should have taken possession) and there is some health/safety issue that's preventing you from staying there, then that will be the ammo you need to try to get your landlord to pony up for the hotel bill.

    Oh, and congrats on the move! I'm assuming all went well at the border? When do you get your stuff delivered?

    EDIT: by the way, here's the link for the general Alberta tenant/landlord rights site...has some good info about your basic rights, might be able to help you answer a few questions...

    wow, thanks for the advice skrpune, I'll definitely keep that link handy.

    Yup, we had a deposit and are currently paying rent for this month on the place so I agree that they should pony up for the hotel bill.

    I did talk to the landlords and they said they were going to look into what they can do as far as reimbursing me for the hotel. She was really understanding about it so it looks like I won't be paying out my ear for this :D

    Also, crossing the border did go well, unpacking my stuff not so well. It's a holiday today so there's nobody at the ABF terminal to deliver our stuff. But it's ok, that's something that was my fault for not checking into and we can unload our stuff tomorrow.
    "Bribe is such an ugly word. I prefer extortion. The X makes it sound cool."

    -Bender
  • skrpuneskrpune Member Posts: 1,409
    Glad to hear no border problems, boo on having to wait for your stuff though. Although considering that you can't quite move into your place yet, I suppose it's almost a good thing that it's a holiday?

    One bit of advice with the trailer delivery - when they drop the trailer, you're required to sign off on it. Make sure you compare the placement/linear footage of the bulkhead before you sign off, and if it has moved take a picture before signing off & before removing the bulkhead to get your stuff. This was the only minor problem I had with ABF on our move up to Canada...my stuff had apparently shifted a bit and the bulkhead had to get reset by ABF, but they moved it back by three feet. That translates to $$$ saved (as you pay by the foot). I unfortunately didn't take a picture and signed off because the driver I got was the one cranky person who works for ABF (everyone else who works for them have been WONDERFUL) and muttered that I just needed to sign off and call the office or something. So I did, and they couldn't credit me the whole 3 feet since I had no proof and signed off...they did offer to go halvsies with me though, and credited me for 1.5 feet of less space, which they really didn't have to do. So while I did have that one minor problem with them, they were quite nice in finding a way to work it out with me so that I walked away a happy customer. And in turn I became a repeat customer, and I recommend them to anyone and everyone doing a long distance or international move...
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  • AldurAldur Juniper Moderator Member Posts: 1,460
    skrpune wrote: »
    Glad to hear no border problems, boo on having to wait for your stuff though. Although considering that you can't quite move into your place yet, I suppose it's almost a good thing that it's a holiday?

    One bit of advice with the trailer delivery - when they drop the trailer, you're required to sign off on it. Make sure you compare the placement/linear footage of the bulkhead before you sign off, and if it has moved take a picture before signing off & before removing the bulkhead to get your stuff. This was the only minor problem I had with ABF on our move up to Canada...my stuff had apparently shifted a bit and the bulkhead had to get reset by ABF, but they moved it back by three feet. That translates to $$$ saved (as you pay by the foot). I unfortunately didn't take a picture and signed off because the driver I got was the one cranky person who works for ABF (everyone else who works for them have been WONDERFUL) and muttered that I just needed to sign off and call the office or something. So I did, and they couldn't credit me the whole 3 feet since I had no proof and signed off...they did offer to go halvsies with me though, and credited me for 1.5 feet of less space, which they really didn't have to do. So while I did have that one minor problem with them, they were quite nice in finding a way to work it out with me so that I walked away a happy customer. And in turn I became a repeat customer, and I recommend them to anyone and everyone doing a long distance or international move...

    Thanks for the advice skrpune, I'll keep it in mind when they drop off the trailer.

    But I've run into another wonderful problem. I called ABF and found out that I have to run to the airport to get customs to clear my stuff and I haven't had a chance to run down there with all the meetings I've had lately. The biggest problem is that I came here as a business visitor, I can't get a work permit until I have the diploma for my BS degree in hand, they won't accept my transcripts. I graduated last month so it's gonna take a bit to get the piece of paper they need....

    So, I have a sneeking suspision that they are going to want papers for my work permit at customs and I won't be able to get my stuff. Did you run ito something similar when you moved up to Canada?
    "Bribe is such an ugly word. I prefer extortion. The X makes it sound cool."

    -Bender
  • skrpuneskrpune Member Posts: 1,409
    Aldur wrote: »
    Thanks for the advice skrpune, I'll keep it in mind when they drop off the trailer.

    But I've run into another wonderful problem. I called ABF and found out that I have to run to the airport to get customs to clear my stuff and I haven't had a chance to run down there with all the meetings I've had lately. The biggest problem is that I came here as a business visitor, I can't get a work permit until I have the diploma for my BS degree in hand, they won't accept my transcripts. I graduated last month so it's gonna take a bit to get the piece of paper they need....

    So, I have a sneeking suspision that they are going to want papers for my work permit at customs and I won't be able to get my stuff. Did you run ito something similar when you moved up to Canada?
    OOOOH, that's crappy! I'm somewhat shocked that ABF didn't warn you of this either! I had to go to customs at the airport to "clear" my stuff when I got there too, but I was advised of this process way in advance. We had to go down to a remote part of the airport and wait in line with a bunch of very cranky people. I don't remember offhand what I had to show them, and at the very least I had to present ID and the inventory of our goods, but I think I did have to present the work permit documents as well. Now that I think about it...if I remember correctly, I had to drive over to ABF to pay the bill & they gave me some documents to present to the customs folks too. I believe it was a bill of lading and it had the weight/linear footage of the shipment and the description of the shipment (personal goods/household goods I believe). I'm pretty sure that along with our IDs & border documents and our inventory/breakdown of our goods was what I brought with me to customs.

    What did they give you at the border when you crossed? Did you mention to the border personnel that you had goods coming in by freight? And do you have work permit documents in the works already or is it all hinging on that copy of the diploma? (I remember having to scan & print out my husand's diploma for our work permit documents - it was in a special display mounting and so it was a little unwieldy and didn't scan/print out so well but it worked!)

    I say call border services & find out what the deal is before going to wait in line with all those cranky people at the customs office. There's some info on border services agency policies here, but I would advise calling them to find out for sure what you'll need to do. You might be able to do what they call a "Temporary Importation of Baggage and Conveyances by Non-Residents" - since even as a business visa person, you're expected to take out whatever you take into the country when you leave...anything extra you bring in & leave there or get there & take out is subject to duties, but your household goods & personal belongings are generally nontaxable. Just be sure to have a breakdown of your stuff by category: personal goods vs household goods & the general amounts & general values. ABF should have asked you for this in the documents to get your goods across the border, so hopefully you already have this ready to go. You MIGHT be asked to put a deposit down (a portion of what would be due as duties should duties be levvied on your goods) - this is generally only done in rare or extreme cases, but definitely ask the border/customs folks about that so you're prepared if you need to do this temporarily to release your stuff.

    You can also try calling your local ABF office back & try to talk to one of the coordinators there...tell them your situation and see if they can offer any advice or insight on how to proceed. They deal with international shipments all the time and the folks that I dealt with in Toronto were pretty well versed in the procedures for clearing customs. They surely want to get your stuff out of that trailer so they can get it back on the road & earning the money sooner rather than later, so it's really in their best interest to try to help you out with this!!
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  • AldurAldur Juniper Moderator Member Posts: 1,460
    skrpune wrote: »
    You can also try calling your local ABF office back & try to talk to one of the coordinators there...tell them your situation and see if they can offer any advice or insight on how to proceed. They deal with international shipments all the time and the folks that I dealt with in Toronto were pretty well versed in the procedures for clearing customs. They surely want to get your stuff out of that trailer so they can get it back on the road & earning the money sooner rather than later, so it's really in their best interest to try to help you out with this!!

    You were very right, I called ABF and they were very well versed in what to do with getting my stuff out of customs but the actually process was a little more painful then expected...

    I headed to the airport to talk with the customs officer there, who was a very nice lady but definitely didn't like the idea of me being up in Canada as a business visitor and shipping my household stuff in. She did give me the benefit of the doubt and released my stuff and setup an appointment with an immigration officer. The next day I went to the appointment with the immigration officer and thats when things looked like they were going south.

    I spoke with the immigration officer who was at first not very understanding and flat out told me that she thought I was lying and that I had been doing work up here in Canada. However, after an extended conversation she did decided to give me the benefit of the doubt and allowed me to go home to take care of the work permit. Afterward she let me know that if they had decided to pursue the matter that I could have been deported and not allowed to return for a year, plus fines, plus possible jail time.... Could have been really bad, but fortunately turned out well.

    So all in all things were a little stressful but everything went smooth. Now the next thing to do is drive up to the border, present my work permit application, and pray that my luck holds ;)

    Good times!
    "Bribe is such an ugly word. I prefer extortion. The X makes it sound cool."

    -Bender
  • skrpuneskrpune Member Posts: 1,409
    WOW. icon_eek.gif What a messy messy situation. I hate to say it, but I think the laws are on their side - they really could have nabbed you bad, and as frustrating and scary as that whole experience must have been, it really could have been a whole helluva lot worse. From their perspective, they have no reason to think why you would ship up your household belongings when you're just there as a business visitor...for you it probably works out to be easier to get your stuff up there as soon as possible so you can get settled in, but to them, it appears as if someone's trying to sneak themselves into the country under a visitor's visa.

    So are you still up in Canada? What's the process for a work permit now - they want you to go to the border to present your application instead of mailing it into them for review? This sounds very different from what I went through to get mine done! Although I think I recall having the option of just taking all our documents to the border for review instead of sending in the application...but it's been three years now, so my memory is a little fuzzy on all that...
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  • AldurAldur Juniper Moderator Member Posts: 1,460
    oh ya, they had every right to boot my butt out of the country, I can definitely understand how it "looked" and it didn't look good. If the immigration officer decided to get me in trouble, there would have been nothing I could do. I'm just glad that she was a very nice person who believed my story.

    On another note about canadian immigration officers, I've noticed that they were very heavy bullet proof looking flack jackets. I found that surprising, didn't think there would be much need for it, I dunno, maybe there is....

    Currently I am back in the states getting my college to speed up getting the diploma. Good news there is that they'll have it to me before the week is over.

    After that I'm supposed to bring all the paper work that the lawyers prepared for me and present it at the boarder for the work permit. From there I "should" get the work permit and be good to go.
    "Bribe is such an ugly word. I prefer extortion. The X makes it sound cool."

    -Bender
  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Member Posts: 4,165 ■■■■■■■■■■
    I worked for Immigration and Customs Enforcement in the US and have friends in CBP. Not surprising that the immigration officer in Canada had a heavy bulletproof vest. People do some crazy things when they want to enter a country illegally...never know if someone has a knife or gun on them. When you attempt to enter an ICE Office you are wanded and forced to remove your belt by armed contract security guards who will kick you out for even a tiny unsharpened pocket knife. Good luck with everything, paperwork and Immigration is always a pain in the butt....
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  • skrpuneskrpune Member Posts: 1,409
    the_Grinch wrote: »
    I worked for Immigration and Customs Enforcement in the US and have friends in CBP. Not surprising that the immigration officer in Canada had a heavy bulletproof vest. People do some crazy things when they want to enter a country illegally...never know if someone has a knife or gun on them. When you attempt to enter an ICE Office you are wanded and forced to remove your belt by armed contract security guards who will kick you out for even a tiny unsharpened pocket knife. Good luck with everything, paperwork and Immigration is always a pain in the butt....
    agreed. People can get a bit, shall we say "unpredictable" when they're desperate enough to try to cross a border illegally. I remember officers on both sides of the border being heavily armed & vested, and they (for understandable & obvious reasons) do not have very much of a sense of humor.

    I wasn't "wanded" when I entered customs offices on either country though. When I went up to Canada & hit their office at the border, everyone was well armed & well protected, and there were officers everywhere, but no wanding or searching of any kind was done. Same for my return trip to the US & passing through the customs office there - we were directed to park our car & then an officer came over with a mirror to check under the car, and then we just waited in line in the office to clear our belongings and re-import our car...again, no searching or wanding was done, just officers everywhere. I wonder if the procedures vary from office to office?
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Member Posts: 4,165 ■■■■■■■■■■
    It can vary from Office to Office, but the Office I was at in in Philadelphia so they didn't take any chances. On the Border they wouldn't wand, but I am surprised that they didn't have a sense of humor....ICE and CBP guys/gals usually do!
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