Curbed Chicago Horror Stories are reader reports of real estate disasters, from bad roommates to infestations and from decorating disasters to shoddy construction. Got a cringe-worthy tale of your own? Send it to email@example.com.
"My first apartment in Chicago was a dumpy little studio in Rogers Park. I was in school and had just bought a MacBook Pro, and a few months after moving in I was up in the middle of the night writing a paper for a midterm, at probably like 3 am. It's pretty vivid still: I rested my hands on the keys and paused for a moment to think of a good word or something when a steady stream of brown water started spewing from the chandelier above my head, directly on the keyboard. Awesome. It took me a minute to confirm that this was really happening and wasn't the shitty dream it appeared to be. Not a dream. I threw the table out of the way, put a trashcan under the light fixture and ran upstairs to confront the upstairs neighbor. The door was unlocked, so I entered to find an overweight and confused-looking older woman in a green muumuu standing next to an overflowing toilet with water up to her ankles. Without saying anything, I pushed her aside and reached for the shut-off valve and turned the water off. The next day I discovered that Apple doesn't do anything for water damage, so I was out a $2,000 computer. And in the summer that place had the worst mold/mildew stench I've ever smelled."