My question involves real estate located in the State of: WAshington
My family of 3 are being told we must leave are home immediately or face a steep fine and/or imprisonment for lack of code compliance.
We had our water shut off for failure to pay, now the city has put a bright orange placard on our door saying we must leave immediately or face penalties listed above for not having water service to our home. Is this legal?
We own the home. the recent financial crisis has forced us to make tough decisions as far as utilities go, we are on our own septic system and have electricity and gas coming to the house. Not only do we have a well documented and legal well that has been on the property even before the house, we figured the one utility we could bring in from an outside source was water. The well does not currently have a pump, but the city does not know this as it is located inside the pump house. We have been bringing in fresh water (about 24 gallons) of water in every day to do dishes, flush toilets, cook, etc etc. The house and property are in great shape and clean inside and out. We also have in case of emergencies a portable toilet with chemicals in case of emergencies that we have not had to use.
How can it be legal to force a family to be homeless simply because they cant afford to pay their water bill(700.00)? We are not living in unsanitary conditions in any way. In these tough economic times we are doing the best we can, me must pay our mortgage or lose are home, yet we cant live in it????? HELLLLP!!!
In addition, the only notice we received was the placard on the door that says we must leave immediately and that we cant remove the placard or face the same penalties as listed above (this is quite embarrassing). The water has been shut off for approx 1-2 months...shouldnt the city have sent some type of notice prior that we would need to vacate?