Thursday, July 13, 2006

At Least It Wasn’t A Penis-Sippy-Cup

It could always be worse, right? Sometimes you really have to stretch for that silver lining, but somewhere, someplace you hope that somebody’s got it worse off than you. Even if it’s not true that someone has it worse than you, you tell yourself this just so you can still sleep at night. So for me it’s the lack of a penis-sippy-cup in the apartment being vacated by one of my tenants that helps me get through the night.

So what did I get instead of a penis-sippy-cup, you ask? I got piles of garbage, a refrigerator full of rotting food, and the over powering stench of cat urine. My tenant, who was by most accounts a good tenant, abandoned the apartment several months ago and moved in with her boyfriend. She continued to pay rent so what did I care. I considered her the perfect tenant - She paid rent every month and was never home. What more could I ask for. Little did I know she had her utilities cut off, oh, and she never emptied her refrigerator. And then there was the 4 bags of garbage that looked like they had been there for months, the sink full of dirty dishes, and the litter box. I’m not sure where the cat is.

The worst part, if it can get any worse, was that I had no idea how bad the apartment was until I showed it to new prospective tenants last Sunday. I was both shocked and embarrassed by the condition. I had advertised the apartment as “clean and quiet” and this place should be condemned by the health department. Surprisingly three of the people I showed it to still filled out applications and I’ve agreed to rent it to one of them. She said she would rent it on the condition the odor was gone. I assured her it would be even if it meant replacing the carpets.

I think the current tenant, the one who left the mess, was caught off guard that I was showing the apartment so soon. She probably figured, “Oh, I’ve got a month to clean it up, so what’s the hurry”. I rent the apartment for below market value because I don’t like to deal with it. The logic is, when I advertise I get a lot of people who want to live there and I usually get the cream of the crop to chose from. In fact, this is really my first bad experience. I put an ad on CraigsList.com and got about 20 response the first 5 days. I showed it Sunday and it’s rented despite the mess.

I called the tenant Monday morning and left a very unpleasant voice mail for her. When I got home from work that day there was an apologetic letter waiting for me. I’ve seen her cleaning the place up the past few days. The apartment had better be spotless and odor free when she leaves or I will be charging her a lot to clean the place. The new tenant seems nice. Another single female college student who drives a nice car and appears to be from a nice home. I could see that look in her eye when I showed her the place. She was able to look past the garbage and see the potential. It may be her first place by herself and I could tell she was already decorating it in her head. I think she’ll be a good tenant.

2 comments:

Jocelyn said...

Yes, not everyone is blessed as with tenants I know! Next time around (in Sept. or Oct.) it will be quite different and anyone who doesn't behave themselves will not be renewed!

I'm glad she is going to clean it up for you.

Anonymous said...

Greg, just caught up on 2 weeks of your blog. Hope your shoulder is better, will you stop overdoing it, please?

The refrigerater is absolutely awesome! (A word I very rarely use in conversation) You gave me some great ideas, but we'll see if my insane schedule and lack of a table saw will have anything to do with whether or not I try something like that. It looks amazing.

I've been blessed with great tenants (now) and horrible tenants (before) so I feel for you. I could tell stories! It's great that she is cleaning up, and even better that you have your home all to yourself. Best of both worlds.