Beautiful setting but MAJOR drawbacks. Beware!
Submitted: October 31, 2009
Stayed: September 2009
My husband and I rented the Mill House in September 2009 for what we hoped would be a restful week's vacation with our son and daughter-in-law. We knew the house would be somewhat rustic, but never imagined it would have the serious problems we encountered. Staying in the house turned out to be such an unpleasant experience that we left after two days, even though we had prepaid for a week. Here are some of the issues we faced: The water had such a strong sulfur (rotten egg) odor that we could not drink it, and did not even want to wash or shower in it. The entire house had a musty, moldy smell and feel, causing two of us to have an allergic reaction. When we arrived, we were told we might encounter bats in the house, and were given instructions on how to get rid of them in case they should appear. Truck traffic noise all night was so loud that we could not sleep in the master bedroom that faced the road. Despite our requests, the owners were unwilling to offer us any kind of refund. In the past, we have rented vacation homes online many times -- in Hawaii, New Hampshire, Vermont, Cape Cod, Culebra, Vieques, Jamaica, Costa Rica and Mexico. We thoroughly enjoyed all of those rentals; none of them had problems anything like those we encountered at the Mill House.
This region of New York state is beautiful, and there are a lot of interesting things to do in the area. However, we definitely would NOT recommend staying at the Mill House.
Owner's Response: We always strive to ensure that our tenants enjoy their stay.
We take pains to fully disclose information about the house so that we do not end up with tenants who do not appreciate its quirks and charms. We recognize that the house is not for everyone- and that all parties are happier when it is a good match. We’d rather rent the house to the ‘right’ tenants or not at all. This house is a very special place, built by hand and upkept with love, passed down from father to daughter, and we prefer to fill it with people who can enjoy the experience that it offers.
Prior to arrival, tenants are emailed a comprehensive guide. It clearly states that the water is from a well, which sometimes runs ‘soft’. The house is regularly and thoroughly cleaned. We’ve had a full season of renters, none of whom complained of mold. These tenants DID NOT encounter any bats; they were simply informed that it is important to keep the doors shut at dusk, or risk letting a bat in (or mosquitoes, squirrels, raccoons, etc...the house is on an 11 acre wooded lot and is next to water). The implication of excess noise is stunning- we have had many, many tenants over the years who fall in love with the house for the peaceful retreat that it offers.
The lease is written in straightforward, fair and clear language that outlines our rules and policies. In the past, we’ve been willing to operate outside of the lease to rectify a complaint or to let tenants out of a lease in emergency situations. We’ve offered money back in situations that we felt that it was appropriate. We are more than happy to work toward a reasonable resolution, when approached respectfully, with problems or complaints.
For whatever reason, these tenants did not mention any of their complaints, such as the smell of mold or excess noise, while I personally showed them around the house and grounds for over an hour upon their arrival. After their arrival on a Friday afternoon, we simply got an email at 10pm on Tuesday night, stating that they have gone home and are demanding their money back. I'm not clear on how they believe that they only stayed for two days (?) or that this aggressive email is the way to approach us about a refund.
Helpful votes: 14/20
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