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Old 06-20-2007, 07:20 PM   #1
Susan P.
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Washing machine bigger than space..what to do
Hi all. I'm hoping someone may have had this problem and arrived at a solution that didn't involve selling the machine!

I am moving into an apartment and got the keys last night. I've had to reject several places because of a disability issue and I had to stop being fussy about having every 'thing' I wanted. There are a few problems with the place but most resolvable but this one. I had bought a brand new $900 washing machine but believe it or not, the space for a machine in the new apartment is too narrow by about 2 inches or less. My son suggested selling the machine and buying another but few machines fit in the space and I would lose heaps of money selling and re-buying.

The laundry is combined with a bathroom so you walk in and have on the right the washing machine space (this has a dryer mounted on the wall above), then vanity and then toilet. The opposing wall to the door has a shower. The outlet and inlet pipes for the washing machine are within the vanity so there is a hole on the right side that one's machine pipes go through and attach.

I am honestly stuck for ideas. If i put the machine temporarily in front of the vanity then the pipes will not reach around. I can probably purchase hose extensions for this but then this bathroom can't be used at all. That is not a HUGE problem in the short term because I have an ensuite but it isn't optimal. The only thing I can think of is getting a carpenter in to take the side wall off the vanity and to remove a couple of inches and put the wall back on BUT if they do a poor job I will be up for the cost of replacing the vanity unit. I presume though this may be the only solution. I do have a twelve month lease so I'm stuck with this problem for a long time.

Any help would be welcome as I'm rather anxious about the issue.
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Old 06-20-2007, 07:32 PM   #2
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You really only have two possible options.

1. Make the space bigger.

2. Get a smaller machine.

There really isn't any other viable option.
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Old 06-20-2007, 07:50 PM   #3
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I did wonder at the potential of using the machine in the kitchen area. This place has an open plan kitchen/living area that is tiled. I thought the machine could be put against a wall and then longer pipes used to connect to water and then to run water off...but..it is not optimal. SIGH. I will get a carpenter in to look at the vanity and quote. Thanks Mason. I am also needing to argue car space also because my space is down stairs and I cannot walk up and down stairs..the process I have to go through to request a change of space will wind up taking 3 months! However, this I can cope with..the machine one is a problem. Depreciation drops value SO fast that I would only get $400 for it and would be up for another 200-300 for a machine of equal vale (albeit smaller). Movers broke 80% of my household goods last year and this machine was a replacement for one broken. I chose the size so that I could wash blankets and larger items and not need dry cleaning very often. I've found it very handy. I am often confused why city apartments are designed so that the occupants are forced to have 'little' things. My machine has a 7.5kg capacity but even the 5.5 one is too wide for the space I suspect. That means a 5kg machine would be the biggest you could have. I saw a women there go up yesterday with a toddler and baby. I bet she'd love to use a bigger size for nappies!
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Old 06-20-2007, 07:50 PM   #4
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Are you renting it or did you buy the place? I would think that if you are renting, then you could not make it bigger? Would it be possible to store your new machine somewhere until the lease expires and rent a smaller one that would fit? Over here in the states we have Rent a Centers where you can rent almost everything for a fee.
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Old 06-20-2007, 08:00 PM   #5
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If you are renting, you might have to ask permission to your landlord before you have a carpenter doing some work, no? If the space is not the size of a standard washing machine, maybe they would even agree to pay for the carpenter. If you do have to pay for the work, that will cost money. You have to consider if it's worth paying for a carpenter or losing a bit of money by selling/rebuying... if your machine is brand new, you could get a good price for it.
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Old 06-20-2007, 08:21 PM   #6
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Oh yes, I'd need to get permission. The one thing in my favour is that water has been seeping through the cupboard and the bottom of it is coming away. I may be able to argue that this could be fixed at the same time and I would share the cost. Storage is not an option because of cost and because I would effectively lose 12 months of my warranty (which to me is a big thing). At a pinch I may be able to exchange it with my sons. His is old as the hills and half the cycle doesn't work. As I said re selling, here, depreciation is a BIG thing. Sure the machine cost $900 and sure it is like new and a little less than 12 months old but I would lose $400 on it roughly and then need to spend more on a new machine. I wish I had known the issue ahead of time as movers are picking up my things today out of storage almost 800km away!! Friends up there had put a number of items into an auction system they have there and if I had been wanting to see the machine THAT was the place to sell it and get optimal money. I didn't realise the problem until late last night and I'm not prepared to ask my friends for last minute favours that would require grabbing other people and heavy lifting.

It's also the issue of what the machine can do. I appreciate having a machine I can wash blankets and small rugs in etc and not having to use a dry cleaner often.

I've just rung 3 carpenters to ask for quotes. One sounded dodgy. One sounded great but is swamped with work and said he couldn't quote for more than a month. The third I had to leave a message for.

If the owner totally refuses then I will either have to swap machines with my son or accept the monetary loss and sell the machine and get a very small one. In the meantime I guess all I can do is have the movers put the machine to one side and then sort it out and pay to have it moved again IF the carpentry is done. If I sell the machine whomever buys it would accept removing it.

I can feel my anxiety levels rising and I keep telling myself these are just issues to be resolved and no big deal. I've had to move 5 times in less than 2 years and with so many things being broken last year..I feel sort of frazzled and over it. Thanks for the interest and support. I feel teary and there is nothing gained by that
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Old 06-20-2007, 09:05 PM   #7
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I wouldn't go getting too upset about the situation. It's just one of those little things we have to deal with when we relocate.

If there is water damage to the area in question your landlord has a legal obligation to repair the problem without you needing to share any costs. I would take the issue up with said landlord and explain that the problem needs to be fixed and they should ensure that your machine will fit in the process if reasonably possible.
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Old 06-20-2007, 09:32 PM   #8
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Hmm..if a vanity base has water damage that does not impact on your ability to use the unit..I'm not sure they do have a legal obligation Mason. Thanks for reminding me that this is 'just' one of those issues to resolve. I do need to drop out of anxiety and be more light hearted about it all

It is a slight shame it is so close to the end of the tax year as I could pitch that anything done now would be tax deductable for the owner (which is correct in our tax system and perhaps yours) in the upcoming tax end of year thing. I still might be able to do this and if I elect to contribute say $100 that is a sweetener..shows good faith and is cheaper than getting another machine that I don't want and is what I would pay a mover to swap my machines with my son's. Frankly the owner would be better buying a new unit entirely and ensuring the space is adequate for anyone's machine. I am going up to the apartment in the next few hours and will look closely at the unit and come back and report

I'll also take a digital of the strip of material that's comes away vis water damage as that would be useful to attach to a request. If nothing else it shows I'm not asking for alterations to a brand spanking new unit!

Some owners are great..some are terrible. I've heard of owners here being totally obstructive. Years ago I went to rent a place but backed out after the owner told me that if anyone stayed overnight (parent or friend or anyone) she wanted an additional $12 for that evening to account for their use of water etc. She also expected the whole of the outside of the place to be washed down once a month and that if I didn't do it myself she would hire someone and send me the bill. NO THANKS. That sort of person shouldn't be a landlord as their expectations are too specific and unrealistic.
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Old 06-20-2007, 09:34 PM   #9
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I should point out that I don't have direct contact with the owner..I rent through an agent. I find that if an agent is supportive they will argue well on your behalf and ensure a situation 'makes sense' to an owner. If the agent is inexperienced or doesn't care etc..then it's a lot harder.
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Old 06-21-2007, 12:05 AM   #10
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Mason..a question. I went and measured and although I need to check that the vanity cupboard is 'square' and that the measurements don't alter..it looks like the machine will fit tho it will be very tight. HOWEVER..it's the actual benchtop around the sink that is too large and it looks like some material that is not readily 'cuttable' like timber. I suspect it's a fake marble material of some sort..a composite. If it turns out this is the ONLY element stopping the machine fitting in (I will go back and remeasure soon) then I either need to have the top cut off OR the top replaced. I suspect replacement would be simpler but I also think how I argue the matter will be important. One has to remember too that the floor is tiled around the cupboard so if the owner put a smaller cupboard in I would have to consider the need for additional tiles. There is also of course the matter of the inlet outlet plumbing pipes. The hot/cold water for the machine would not be affected at all by a smaller unit put the outlet for the water could be affected.
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