Monday, December 20, 2010


Well, that young boy we tried to help out? It did not work out. Lesson to be learned here, I suppose. When someone tells you that they've been living in a tent, this means that they've probably made some poor decisions. He was a compulsive liar, blatently disrespectful of the other tenants and any rules. He was a video game addict with little ambition.

We've never evicted a tenant before, but he was a security issue, and we were concerned. Evictions can take a while, and he simply stopped paying rent as soon as he knew he was evicted. We had every landlord's worst fear. Tim is a follower of Dave Ramsey's radio show. He told the boy, "We'll pay you $200 if you are out by this weekend." The decision flies in the face of all that is fair and reasonable, doesn't it? But the benefits were that he was out by this weekend, he did not damage the apartment, (we were worried about that) and that we saved a bundle on legal fees too. Since he had stopped paying rent, we stood to lose much, much more.

Valuable life lesson learned. If a person is in a dire situation, look at them closely. You may see why.

Tim and I have both talked about this. We will never again take in a tenant because we feel sorry for him. Bob B? Yep. You can say, 'I told you so.' *waits humbly*


Lydia said...

As a landlord, I can say that I have done the same thing any number of times. Many people can see a kind heart coming and they know how to play it. Don't feel bad that you did the right thing. But you are wiser for it.

Smart move with the $200 -- you came out money ahead, I can assure you.

BB said...

Wow - interesting move by Tim. Actually very clever! As for the tenant - I think you did the right thing, he got a chance he may not have otherwise. It's important to keep finding the best in people - you may remind them about qualities they had forgotten they owned. You cannot save everyone though...

A Novel Woman said...

There should not be any "I told you so" because one never knows how a tenant is going to turn out. There have been reasonable looking tenants who turned out to be duds, too. You did the right thing by giving him the money to leave. Don't think of it as payment to the recalcitrant tenant, but as payment to yourselves. It's buying you peace of mind and an end to what could have been an ugly situation.

You're lucky. Unless the laws have changed recently, in Canada you can't evict someone during the winter months. You'd have to wait until spring.

Pudge450 said...

I've done the same.. trying to help someone who was down and struggling. I allowed a tenant to skip her December rent because I knew she was struggling and wanted to buy Christmas gifts for her grandchildren. I believe she thought I was a soft touch and that was the starting point of late rent payments. The next December, she skipped paying rent completely. I had to get tough with her to get things back in line. As they say, no good deed goes unpunished.

I refunded one tenant's security deposit (in excess of the amount she paid) before she moved out, just so she had money to make a deposit on another apartment. I wanted her out that badly. She left the apartment nasty and strewn with things she did not want to move. Stove and fridge... a disaster.

Mikey said...

Aww, that's too bad. Hard to tell though, you never know if someone is sincere or just knows how to manipulate people.
Excellent way to get him out of there. I did that w/and ex boyfriend. Paid him $1000 to get out within 2 hours, after watching him take his anger out on his horse. He went for it and was gone. Took a month to get his horses out of here though. Later I read online (among other bad things about him) another girl's account of how he sodomized and raped her, then locked her up in his house. She escaped and charges are pending against him. I dodged a BIG bullet there.
You guys did the right thing.

Paula said...

I was a landlady in San Antonio for many years and I could write a book. Glad I don't deal with that any longer. Just sit back and watch John deal with his and sometimes help him clean up after one.

Kelly said...

What a shame. ... and I agree y'all did the right thing in offering him money to leave.

WhiteStone said...

May you find a lovely tenant, one who has impeccable recommendations and who desires having a good reputation above all things!

Bob Barbanes said...

Well I will not say, "I told you so." That would be unkind. You took a chance (albeit a risky one with an arguable chance of success), and it unfortunately did not work out. No shame there.

I feel badly for that young man- apparently part of the "entitled" generation (Generation E?) who feel no need to take personal responsibility for their lives. Nope, they'd rather sit and play video games all day - hey, I've got MY life to live and screw you!

The takeaway from this is that while you may not have brought out the best in that young man, he certainly brought out the best in you and Tim.

Congrats for handling it in such a clever way - certainly one that I would not have thought of ;)

And if I don't get another chance to say it, I wish you and your family a warm, wonderful, peaceful...and yes, merry...Christmas!

~Bob Barbanes