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Monday, May 14

The Joys of Landlording

Being a landlord is a perfect choice if you want to see how society is evolving into one of lethargy, filth and helplessness.  Yes, today I'm on my soapbox.

As happens from time to time, I have a vacant property I am rehabbing.  Since my return from Omaha I've spent most of my free time knee deep in disgust.  This was a tenant I really liked, which made it all the more disappointing to see how she left home.

Don't get me wrong - I expect normal wear and tear.  I know I might need to replace a burnt out light bulb, touch up the paint, and polish the faucets.  But I suppose I give society too much credit.  Just because I take care of my home doesn't mean my tenants will take care of theirs.  Or maybe that's the problem... they know it isn't their home and so they just don't care.

  • The backyard was a jungle.  I'm starting to wonder if my tenant knew she had a backyard because she obviously never thought to cut the grass back there.  I had to pull vines off the side of the house and use a saw to trim some of the thicker brush.
  • The tenant apparently thought I work for Waste Management, because I've hauled three truckloads of garbage she left.
  • When she moved in 28 months ago, I let her pick out brand new carpet.  Let's just say this time I'm picking it out.  How does one ruin carpet in just 28 months?
  • We spent four hours cleaning the main bathroom.  Yuck.
  • Note to self:  never again tell the tenant she can paint if she'd like.  Anyone who entrusts their 8 year old daughter to paint her own room should NOT be trusted to paint anything.
Unfortunately I did not charge a deposit when I rented this house.  When I negotiated the lease, the tenant agreed to stay for at least 2 years if I agreed to do this.  I wonder if tenants behave differently when they know the landlord is holding a deposit or if they just don't give a damn either way.


  1. I think they forget about the deposit. I'm a Realtor and when renters are asked why they rent, one of the reasons is they don't have to worry about the expense to up keep a property. Which, also, means they aren't going to sink extra cash into cleaners to clean, gas to mow and/or take the time to keep someone else's property looking good. You could have an addendum to your rental agreement going over your expectations like yard work, a/c filters, basic house cleaning, etc.

    I'm off to do a car dealership shop. I have four lined up in the next 3 days.

  2. Pat,
    Don't get me started about a/c filters. I wish I could embed a chip into the filter screen that sets off an alarm when the filter needs changing. A very LOUD alarm, mind you. I'm definitely learning the importance of adding plain English addendum that emphasize my pet peeves.

    Good luck with the car dealership shops. I enjoy those. The report is on the long side if you are doing what I think you are doing. I like shopping for cars though so the report doesn't really bother me much.