Slumlords!

So if you’ve been reading for anytime you know Adam and I had issues with our apartment in NYC.  Actually just one issue.  The leaks.  The massive, massive leaks.  In the closet.  In the hallway.  In the foyer.  In the bathroom.  In the other bathroom.  LEAKS.  In fact it was so bad before we left that the ceiling in the foyer had collapsed.  And the ceiling in the bathroom was even worse.  We could actually see the pipes of the toilet in the apartment above ours because of the hole in the ceiling.  It was so bad that we didn’t pay rent the last two months we were there.

So we move to Maine.  The finding our apartment is a story in and of itself which I’ll tell later.

But we find out apartment in Maine.  And we love it.  It’s about 1,200 square feet.  Has a sunroom the entire width of the house.  A back porch half the width of the house.  Three bedrooms.  A real dining room.  And a kitchen that 20 people can stand in comfortably and still leave Adam room to cook.  We LOVE our apartment.

And when we rented it we shared with our new landlord the stories of our New York City apartment.  And how non-responsive the super and landlord were.  And he was very sympathetic.  We liked Tim our new landlord so much that after we moved in we went out to dinner with him.  Adam even did his brother’s wedding cake.

Wait for it.  I’m getting there.

Turns out Tim, our new landlord is just as bad as our old landlord.

For example.

When we rented our apartment, it was in the final stages of being renovated.  There were a number of things he said he’d do before he was finished.  Like put down real flooring in the attic to make it safe.  He did not.  Adam stuck his foot through the ceiling about six months after we moved in.  We still have a hole in our kitchen ceiling.

He said that he’d take care of plowing when it snowed.  The first year we were here we had a 32 inch snow storm.  It was the most snow Portland had ever gotten in one storm.  We waited five days to be plowed out.  Last year he didn’t plow at all.  This year we are going to hire someone to plow us because we can’t take it.

He told us that he’d landscape the yard once we were moved in.  He didn’t.  He didn’t even finish putting up trim on the front porch.  The first summer we lived here it still looked like the apartment was under construction.  Last summer Adam spent close to a 1,000 bucks on landscaping.  Tim told us he’d help with the cost.  Until Adam asked about it and seems he doesn’t remember saying that.  At least the yard is presentable.

He also said that he’d take care of our lawn.  The first summer we lived here it was mowed twice.  By Tim.  We borrowed a friends weed whacker and did it ourselves a couple of times.  Last summer Tim brought us a lawn mower and told us to do it ourselves.  We didn’t mind.  It was better than going without.  This year he told our new downstairs neighbors if they mowed the yard they could have a dog.  They’ve mowed once.  I mowed the rest. Of course the one time they mowed they broke the mower.  That was six weeks ago.  We’ve been trying to get the mower fixed for six weeks.  Tim’s response: I didn’t break the mower, I shouldn’t have to pay to have it repaired.”  Tim finally came and weed whacked the yard over the weekend.  It looks like ass.  The mower still isn’t fixed.  Adam and I are fighting over it.  He wants us to just fix the mower and pay for it ourselves and just deal with it.  I told him that was not an option.  I like my apartment, but I’m not the landlord.  Tim is.  I’d be happy to let the yard go.  As I told someone at work, it’s not like he’s being forced to be a landlord. No one is making him do this.  If he doesn’t want to do the work.  Sell the fucking building.

To make matters worse we don’t have a lease.  Our lease expired in June 2013.  We were month to month for a year.  This past May we were told that our rent was being increased by 100 dollars and that we had to sign a new lease.  So we agreed.  We didn’t like it but we agreed.  So we increased our rent but we still haven’t seen a lease.  Because of this Adam is convinced that Tim could kick us out anytime he wants.  I say that the text messages and emails and the increased rent are proof of our intent to sign a lease that Tim never provided.  Meaning that in a court of law the law would be on our side.  I’ve also told Adam that if Tim did tell us to move, we’d stop paying rent immediately and force him to evict us.  And we sure as fuck wouldn’t bother to replace all the light fixtures when we remove the ceiling fans we installed.

So it turns out we’ve managed to get ourselves in to the same landlord predicament in Maine as we did in NYC.  Go figure.

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2 thoughts on “Slumlords!

  1. javabear September 9, 2014 / 06:19

    Maybe you could buy a place of your own? You have already put money into homeowner-y things in that place. You could get your own small house and earn equity and stuff.

  2. Bonnie September 9, 2014 / 10:01

    I agree with Java – either buy your own place, or find an apartment that is professionally managed. That’s the business I’m in. Let me know if you need suggestions of professional management companies in your area!

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