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Wednesday, June 20

Deadbeat Tenant: Chapter 1

Over the last few months I've been the unintentional recipient of an email exchange between a landlord and his deadbeat tenant.  Truth be told, it's fascinating to watch this obviously naive newbie of a landlord deal with this seasoned, career scam artist of a tenant.  My email address is very similar to one of the landlord's.  Interestingly, the drama all takes place in my hometown of Birmingham, AL.  So, without further ado, I share:

Cast of Characters
Kandi... as deadbeat tenant
Jan... as cc'ed co-landlord
Ricky... as God-fearing landlord

I was first copied on March 26, 2012.  

On Mon, Mar 26, 2012 at 8:43 AM, Kandi wrote:
Jan, I have been out of town for my work.  I apologize, my taxes were supposed to be in my account the next week after I spoke with you.  There was some kind of hold up that they needed some more information and I did not know until I got back.  But it is straightened out now I believe and they assured me I would have it this week.  I promise as soon as it hits I will have you all caught up.  I’m really sorry.
Thank you,

Innocent Kandi promises to pay her rent the week of March 26th.  She deploys the classic "waiting on my tax refund" excuse.  Eventually Jan and Ricky realize that tenants who rely on tax refunds to pay recurring expenses might have trouble managing their money.  Jan starts out as a friendly landlord.  Jan patiently waits two weeks before asking Kandi where the rent is.  She also throws a bomb:  Kandi hasn't been too sweet about paying her rent lately.

From: Jan
Sent: Tuesday, April 10, 2012 1:41 PM
To: Kandi
Subject: Re: Rent
I hope you are well.
We need to talk about your rental agreement for the townhome.  I think we have been lenient regarding the due date of your rent payments, and we have tried to respond to everything that needed to be fixed in a very timely manner.
However, unless you have put a check in the mail recently, you are now four months behind on your rent payments (January 2012, February 2012, March 2012, and April 2012).
We need to talk about when we can collect these four rent payments, as well as how we will handle the payment schedule going forward.
Please call me at your earliest convenience.  My cell phone is 413-xxxx.
Thank you.

Innocent Kandi takes a full week to respond, but she's not stalling.  No, she's been having a hard time with her girls.  She also uses this as an opportunity to let her landlord know what a wonderful person she is.

From: Kandi
Date: Mon, Apr 16, 2012 at 8:01 AM
Subject: RE: Rent
To: Jan 
Good morning Jan.  I was out last week and just responding to your email, I apologize.  You are completely right, you have been more than lenient with me. I know with my taxes I can catch you up, I just have not received them yet.  There were some discrepancies with me getting to file the girls, but anyway I think this has been resolved and now I’m just waiting.  I am really sorry it has been this way, I never had any intention of ever being late on the rent, that is very important to me.  I have had a really hard time and a lot of unexpected things with Courtnie which we are still dealing with.  None of this should affect you and I am so sorry.  I think things are going to get better with me having another income soon but with all of that said.  I will start looking because I know you need to get someone in there that is dependable every month on your rent.  If I could change the way things have gone this past year I really would.  You are a great person and I certainly have not meant to do you wrong.  I appreciate everything you have done.  I’m going to call again this morning to check on my taxes, I really think I will have them this week.  I will try to call you tonight, the girls have ball but hopefully it will not be too late when we get home.
Thank you Jan,

Rent is very important to Innocent Kandi, but she also promises to start looking for a new place.  Tomorrow we meet Rick, God-fearing landlord #2.

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