I recently purchased a 45 yr old ranch with a concrete cistern under 1/4 of the house. When I asked the sellers about it they said it hardly ever filled-6" water since they had owned property. The inspector told me I could turn it into a basement and I bought the stupid idea...and the house......A plumber looked in there today and it is already at 3 1/2 feet full of water. I have only been in the house 6 weeks and am worried...Do I have any choice other than a pump with electric??? Anyway to fill it in permanently and get rid of this problem??? If it is filled with rocks what will happen to the lid area in house when water fills the cistern?