What It's *Truly* Like Being a Landlord

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JoDa
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What It's *Truly* Like Being a Landlord

Postby JoDa » Mon Mar 31, 2014 12:26 am

I will make money off of this, so I'm not going to complain too much, but I spent all day today spackling up holes where my pictures were hung and scrubbing scuff marks off the walls with numerous Magic Erasers (they truly are magic, though I'm sure they're ultimately toxic as hell). I broke half my fingernails due to them being soft and waterlogged, and fought with the dude at Home Depot who told me the smallest portion I could get my paint color in was a gallon (I ultimately got a quart after the manager got involved, since I only need enough to paint over the spackle). I don't think it's weird that I own sanding blocks, spackle spatulas, and numerous other small tools, nor that I know that I can dry spackle faster with a blowdryer on the "cool" setting should I need to turn a property over in less than 24 hours. Or that I can clean out a microwave, oven, or dishwasher right quick with some lemon juice and heat. But at least I don't have to spend several hours removing spilled nail polish from a hardwood floor this time around?

Lest you think your landlord isn't "doing anything to earn the rent..." (maybe *they* aren't...)
CSP $19K
BOA $4K
UMP $11.5K
Target Visa $1.5K


MemberSince99
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Postby MemberSince99 » Mon Mar 31, 2014 5:44 am

That does suck. People should take better care of the place than that.


On the bright side, at least now you have a reason to keep their security deposit so that saves you making one up (i.e. needed to replace a lightbulb for 500 dollars and clean the carpets for another grand...)

JoDa
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Postby JoDa » Tue Apr 01, 2014 9:44 pm

LOL...see, I try to be low-maintenance. First of all, all that cleaning/spackling/painting was MY place that I'm moving out of. Totally my doing, but fine after 4.5 years. I also have NO carpet to scrub in ANY of my properties...100% hardwoods/tile. I did charge the witch who thought she could get off scott free dumping a bottle of nail polish on the floor...I noted it in her inspection before she moved out so she had the opportunity to clean it up herself, she didn't, and she was bitten with a fee to clean it off and re-poly the floor in that area (nail polish remover is pretty noxious stuff, and takes up poly as well as nail polish, but I guess she's lucky I took it up myself and therefore she only got charged for the $.99 bottle of remover and a bag of gloves so I didn't destroy my hands on top of the poly job). Nail polish bottles are pretty tough...I've dropped a CLOSED one on my floor before and it didn't break...so it was clearly negligence in both dropping it *OPEN* AND not cleaning it up right away.

Renters, though, are not great about cleaning. Unfortunately, there's not much I can do about that. Sure, if they leave tons of junk, I can charge for it, but if they leave the place "broom clean" and empty of their personal effects and outright trash, they've met the letter of the law, and scrubbing gunk out of appliances falls to me. Fortunately, lemon juice and magic erasers are magic bullets.

Just to share, if the microwave or oven are gunky, set a small bowl of lemon juice or a few slices of lemon in a bowl of water in the oven/microwave, turn them on until you get steam (about 30 minutes in the oven and 5 minutes in the microwave), then let them sit for about 15 minutes. Gunk comes off with a damp sponge. For the dishwasher, you can either place a bowl of lemon juice or lemon water in the top rack and run a "dry" cycle to steam it up, or run a full cycle with white vinegar in the detergent hatch. WAY easier and less noxious than other methods.
CSP $19K
BOA $4K
UMP $11.5K
Target Visa $1.5K

JoDa
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Posts: 235
Joined: Tue Mar 12, 2013 10:10 pm
Location: United States

Postby JoDa » Tue Apr 01, 2014 9:55 pm

And, yes, there are landlords who will charge you out the patootie for any old thing. I once had a landlord try to charge me $90 for tightening up the screws on cabinet doors and towel racks (none of them were broken or dislodged, just a little loose from use). When I argued in court that the only way that was reasonable is if they were requiring me to pay for a gold-plated screwdriver for that job ALONE (there were other egregious charges, so, yes, I did sue in small claims), the magistrate chuckled and wrote it off as normal maintenance. Since I have no desire to waste my time in court, only things I can fully justify get charged back to the tenant...
CSP $19K
BOA $4K
UMP $11.5K
Target Visa $1.5K



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