Thursday, March 12, 2009

Trouble with landlords...

I had said earlier that I had just recently moved... I'm still in Clewiston but where I was living was becoming unbearable.
Just about a year ago, through no fault of my own, (yes it was in an oblique way... more bad decisions when it comes to women I seem to attract) I was forced on very short notice to find a new place to live. I lived in a local motel for about a month when a buddy of mine turned me on to a local woman who had several rentals.
I called her and we met at the one place she had close by. An older single-wide trailer in a really nice subdivision. Totally furnished, all I had to bring was my toothbrush. I had a little more than that, but not much. Everything was included, including the Satellite TV...
Price.... You don't want to know... I could afford it, but you'd shit if you knew what I was paying for a 30 year old single wide...
But I was desperate.
I was living in a motel.
I was going to the Laundromat weekly. (Que? Se habla Hispaniola? me no habla englaise senor...)
And it had it's own washer~dryer...
So I moved in. And the problems started a month later. Again, I'm NOT going to tell you what I was paying for this place, but for the money I was forking over every month I expect shit to work.
I get up for work, hit the remote and the TV is out...
That afternoon I get home from work and call the landlady... She's quite apologetic... She forgot to pay the bill... Next day the TV is back on.
And this happens every month from then on. I have to call her to remind her that she needs to pay the TV bill.
It gets worse.
I should tell you at this point in my little rant that she insisted in me paying cash... No checks. I had no lease, just month to month deal. And I dropped off my rent every month in an unmarked envelope at a local bar...
Every time I did it I felt like some bookie's runner dropping off the receipts and was expecting the vice squad to pinch me at any moment.
Anyway, I digress...
It gets worse.
Around the middle of last August my central air takes a shit. Call the landlady. OK sez she, she'll be right on it! No I don't know how many of you have ever spent an August in south central Florida... 100% humidity, high 90's in the day, down to a cool 85 F at night.
I was melting.
Three fucking weeks and still nothing!
I finally had a chat with my neighbor, who had a friend who did HVAC on the side... For a 12 pack of Busch lite and $30 in parts he had me chilling in about 25 minutes. I know, I could have done that to begin with, but when one is paying an obscene amount of money a month just for a place to crash you fucking expect to get shit fixed.
So, besides the TV going out every 30 days, everything is peachy for the next few months, I even had a pretty good time during the two tropical storms that blew through.
Then comes Thanksgiving.
Again, I'm from Pennsylvania originally, so to me when it gets cool here I don't really get excited. But sometimes it does get below freezing here. The night after Thanksgiving it dropped into the mid-30's and when I came home it was a tad bit chilly, so I decided to put the heat on.
It ran for a grand total of 22 minutes.
Call the landlady again...
Oh, Tommy! I'm so sorry! I'll get right on it...
November turns to December...
Still nothing on the heat.
I've got a few space heaters for the really cold nights but really, it's been a fairly mild winter so I haven't had to use them all that much.
Around December 26th the water heater takes a huge shit.
What the Fuck!
Another call... "I'll get right on it!" sez she...
Three, three fucking weeks it takes to get a new water heater...
I know, I put up with too much shit to begin with, but that's the way I am... I try to avoid confrontation at all costs.
It's a weakness of mine.
Anyway, after taking cold showers for three fucking weeks and the heat still isn't working a cold front decides to make Clewiston it's home for a week...
Highs in the 40's and hard freezes every night. Low 20's three nights in a row.
I'm done.
My engineer, SA, tells me he spied a house in the nice section of town for rent... Furnished. I call the number, see the house... Nice little place... A real house! Not some shitty trailer. For $350 less a month I was paying for that shitty trailer! And the landlord, the owner, also owns the motel I lived in last year and remembered me and was quite happy with me moving into his house... Wrote the check for one month's rent and 1 month's deposit and signed a lease right there and then.
I moved out of the shithole that day. Pretty sad I could fit everything I own into my car... but I've been there before too.
The place was furnished, but barley. I did have to buy a bunch of things like dishes, pots and pans and flatware, a microwave, blender and toaster oven, but other than that I'm happier than shit right now.
Anyway, that's my latest experience with landlords... I should buy a home, but with the economy the way it is and me really not knowing if I want to stay here for 20 years I'll just rent for now.
And I'm crossing my fingers that shit stays cool for now.
Copyright 2009 Thomas J Wolfenden


Anonymous said...

Your blog is aptly titled!

I know a couple of senior snowbirds who went down for the winter and they had the same problem as you.

Ranger Tom said...

Leazwell: You wouldn't believe what they charge for rentals around here... And it's an hour's drive from either coast! I can get a really nice condo in West Palm Beach for even less that I'm paying for this house... There's nothing around here but the sugar mill, millions of acres of sugarcane and lake Okeechobee, and unliess you like to Bass Fish, it's just a big mosquito infested body of water.

weatherchazer said...

Had a crappy landlord once. Both A/C units took a dirt nap, had to heat with a small gas unit on the wall that winter, furnished my own washer and dryer- then the mold in the bedroom started. Turned a pair of my black leather boots green before I figured out what the smell was coming out of my closet. Pissed me off! Luckily, the lease ended the next month and I hoofed it out of there.

Ranger Tom said...

Weatherchazer: Ah, the joys of living in the south!