Monday, March 24, 2008

How to lose a long-time tentant

1. Hire an incompetent who, even though he lives in the complex, can't make it to the office by the time it's supposed to open. Make sure he can't keep driveways and sidewalks ice-free, even though that means cars will have to take a headlong run all the way from the bottom of the sloping driveway in order to make it to the top and out onto the street. Stopping for anything (like pedestrians, say, or oncoming traffic) should result in the driver having to slither back to the bottom of the hill and try again.

2. Let said incompetent miss the deadline for writing lease addenda (they're usually on our doors by mid-February. It's now almost April).

3. This manager will then write addenda, back-dating them in such a way as to imply lessees were given a week to decide whether they were renewing or not. The addenda will be distributed the Friday morning of a holiday weekend in March, with a deadline of 12 PM the following Monday (not even two full business days). The manager will not be in the office that day to answer questions or field complaints, of course.

4. Then have the manager write threatening, frightening follow-up letters like this:

Dear Resident:

As per your lease renewal, I have not received it as of today 12:00 pm Monday 3/24/08.

If you want to renew but have questions please e-mail or call and leave your name, apt number, and phone number. [No phone number or email address included in the letter]

I will return your call ASAP.

We are receiving 200 to 300 calls and or e-mails a day on people that want an apt at [complex name].

Please contact me no later than 9:00 AM tomorrow 3/25/08.

If I do not hear back from you I will have to assume that you are not renewing and will need to start showing your apt and leasing it for the date your lease ends.

Please note that it could be rented as early as the end of the day tomorrow.

I have closed the office tomorrow at 12:00 noon only waiting in case you for got to turn your renewal in.

I am in the office today and tomorrow but working on preparing to start showing apts. All calls are being screened but if you call or e-mail I will get back to you.

Thank You
[name deleted]

I just spoke to my upstairs neighbor. I was right. The [bleep] [bleep] [bleep]ing manager put the addenda, dated 3/17/08, on doors Friday morning (3/21/08). I was already gone for the weekend, and just got back at 9 this evening. My neighbor said she wondered why I'd left the thing on my door all weekend. I've been looking for the blasted thing to show up since the beginning of February, and the one week I go out of town it finally gets here.

I've called the office and left a message, signed and returned the addendum, emailed him (he left an email address on a sign at the office door), and will call again tomorrow morning to make sure he got the stupid thing. And then I am going to be shopping in earnest for an apartment or a little bitty house to rent starting August 2009. I have officially Had It With This Place.

Snarl. Now I'm going to fuss over a cat who's been trying to get my attention since I walked through the front door.


Anonymous said...

Oh, V, that is utterly APPALLING! There has to be an agency or place you can complain to. What if you decided to spend the entire week at your parents' house?

Today's word: What a Gen-X-er will be at 65: and Old GEEXER

--V said...

Yeah, I know. And I mentioned to my Mom that I hadn't seen the lease renewal thing yet. I was planning on calling the manager today anyway, asking him when I could expect it.

I've decided to talk to my credit union to see how much I'm worth, mortgage-wise. I'm sick of throwing my money down a hole. It's a buyer's market out there, and being a first-time home buyer gives me a little bit of an edge, I think. No house to unload before I buy anything.


Let's see if I really do this or just talk about it for the next ten years.

Just Me said...

Don't talk too long.

If your credit is good, you've got it made. The interest rates are good, and you're a first-time buyer in a buyer's market.

It can't hurt to talk to your credit union or your realtor to help you figure out what sort of mortgage you can manage. Once you know what numbers you're dealing with, you can decide if you want to pursue ownership over rental.

!! !! !! GO FOR IT !! !! !!

Anonymous said...

Don't you have a sister in the real estate business?

Guess you already thought of that...

--V said...

I do, but she doesn't work in this area. Now if I lived near her and was looking for a house here I could go through her. Or if I was looking for a house in her area...but then I'd have to get another job, 'cause the commute from there to here is impossible (2 1/2 hour drive. No idea how long it would take to walk it...).

And I like my job (finally), so I guess I'm gonna have to employ a stranger.

Reckless Sarcasm said...

V's sister here... :)
Yes it is a buyers market. FHA is very competitive these days. Many lenders are using FHA instead of conventional products due to the great rates. Also ask your lender about USDA Rural Development loans. With FHA you have to have 3% in the transaction whereas with USDA the seller can pay all the closing costs. The only thing is, you have to check to be sure that the property is eligible for USDA. The website is:

That's my PSA for the day :)