Monday, November 19, 2007

Tenants Getting Screwed

Hard to believe that I, as a landlord, think that tenants are getting screwed. Usually a landlord gets a bad rap as the "slumlord" for not taking care of a property when in fact the tenants have destroyed the home. Like the lady who was complaining of mold in her home when in fact she never reported the toilet leaking and also never and I mean never, cleaned the bathroom in over a year. What does one expect?

But this time, in this one event, tenants are getting the shaft. Investors that thought real estate was the best get quick scheme out there, many flocked to the market buying homes and then renting the properties to make huge profits. Then the unthinkable has happened. The market went down.

So many so called "investors" got stuck with poor investments from their own bad choices and thus here comes the bad guys taking the homes back; those nasty lenders. Since the would-be-investors couldn't make the payments, the tenants get screwed finding out they have to move out with virtually no notice. Shame on them.

It is one thing when notice is given to a tenant to move, but when a foreclosure happens the tenants could be out on the street even though they had paid their payments on time. In this ever changing environment, it is becoming possible for tenants wanting information about the landlord/owner and their financial position. It has always been assumed that the landlord owned the home and as long as the tenants took care of the property and paid the rent on time all was fine. But with this new breed of investors out there, tenants need to be cautious who they rent from or they possibly could be out on the street with no fault of their own.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Grease is Normal Wear and Tear

As a landlord, I am constantly hearing tenants tell me what is "normal wear and tear". It is so funny what people come up with when they are desperate. Here are a few recent tenant statements when they had just moved out about their final walkthru:

1. "Burn holes in the carpet since it is ok to smoke in the home."

2. "I had to move the fridge and just because there is a 2 foot tear in the vinyl, you should not charge me because it is normal wear and tear."

3. "Those grease hand prints on the wall are totally normal wear and tear."

4. "Doesn't everybody park in the front yard?" (killed the grass and major ruts)

5. "You were going to clean the carpets anyway, right?"

6. "That hole in the wall was an accident. You can't charge me for accidents."

7. "The wind just blew the storm door right off the home."

8. "Those were not my fleas. They must have come in right after I left"

9. "It was that way (damaged items, many) when we moved in" (it was a brand new home)

10. And my favorite, "If you won't charge me now, I will come back and clean it next week"

There are thousands more, and each time it keeps getting better. I don't understand why people won't take responsibility for their own actions. That's why we document everything.

I have no doubt there will be more to come!