Monday, December 10, 2007

Some people just don’t get it, do they?

We had a tenant for two years who was regularly late with her rent. Sometimes that rent would be six weeks or more in arrears and when it came time to renew her lease a few months back, we were relieved that she declared she was unwilling to do so.

We tried explaining to her that we had a mortgage payment to make on the building in which she lived, and if she didn’t pay her rent on time, we either dug into our own pockets to make up the shortfall or we incurred late penalties from our lender. Did putting late penalties onto her rent make a difference? No, she just ignored them.

Well, now she’s out. The first thing we had to do was have the place cleaned. She claims to have had a cleaning service in, but if that’s true, then she needs to get her money back. The oven took more than an hour (with a spray-on oven cleaner and lots of elbow-grease) to scrub clean, and more than two hours were spent, on hands and knees, getting the stains out of the carpet. And then there were the missing items to be replaced, like the gate latch and the shower drain, and the damaged items to be repaired or replaced, like kitchen door hinges and a mouldy, mildew-stained shower curtain (a fabric curtain that could have been kept clean by the simple expedient of a quick cycle through the washing machine with a bit of bleach).

Finally, there is a mountain of garden debris (hers was a garden flat) behind the garden shed, debris she was warned in writing to remove and to cease and desist from piling there. Always it was, “we’ll get it out next weekend…” Well, next weekend has come and gone and now I have to hire someone to come haul it away and dump it. And it won’t be at my expense, although it will be the lowest cost vendor I can find.

So, she’s been out of her flat for less than two weeks and guess what? She’s calling up and having fits because she hasn’t received her cleaning/security deposit back yet. Seems she needs the money…

Shoe pinches when it’s on the other foot, doesn’t it?

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