City landlords are used to price-gouging. It’s just that they’re customarily the ones doing it.
“Treating real estate as privately owned wealth, as a financial asset, has devastating public effects.”
Living in Washington D.C. can kill a bank account fast. Sleeping in a closet in the nation’s capital can zap the soul even quicker.
In Montreal, many apartments are floors of a former single-family home, and have stairs on the outside as a result. Our landlord liked to perch on this staircase, literally right outside of my window, and argue with various contractors.
“Well, I knew when I bought the place that I wasn’t long for Ohio. I was there for a job and was only going to buy a rentable property. I decided to become a landlord because this condo was in a larger building, maybe 60 units, and within walking distance from the capital. I figured if I couldn’t rent that, then the whole state had collapsed into a sinkhole.”
I never met the landlord at my first rental.
My first week in the U.S. was spent in the fog of jet lag, hormones, and tears that came with moving halfway around the world only to find that you kind of forgot to find somewhere to live. I spent a week going from one house to another with growing desperation, trying to choose between the woman who wanted me to sleep in her living room and the landlord who promised he’d finish the kitchen “soon” and forbade overnight guests. I found a good house, took the room, and came back to sign the lease the next day only to find that the toilet had been removed. Everything was awful, until Chris showed up, quietly carried all my bags up the stairs, built my bookcase, and put me with a minimum of fuss into a house of messy, friendly stoners.
Having evaluated the cleanliness of many an apartment and done the dirty work required to get it into shape for a new resident I know how to ensure nothing gets overlooked.
Today on “WWYD,” paying your rent, but still seeing the money in your account.