Life As a Landlord

Ok, so I know I told you I was really busy and couldn’t write this week, but then some really absurd things happened and I HAD to write them down. This is a two-part story, so I’ll start from the beginning.

When my sister and her husband moved out of Chicago for their careers, they left behind a condo. It was about this same time I became a default landlord. :)

The first couple years as a landlord were fine. I showed the apartment and within the first two showings it was rented. The tenants didn’t bother me once moved in. I was happy with my once a year responsibility.

That was until we decided to rent the place to “John.”

After living quietly in the condo for a year, John, who was always a bit odd, let us know that he was moving out at the end of his lease. We immediately listed the condo and booked a showing within days with a married couple.

When we told him we’d be by to show the condo, John let us know that he recently had back surgery and was bed-ridden, so he’d be in the place when we showed it. Alright, sort of awkward, but whatever.

I hadn’t been in the apartment since John moved in, so I wasn’t sure what kind of condition we’d be walking into on the day of the showing. Just as I led the couple up the stairs and told them what an amazing unit the condo was, we were hit with a wave of cigarette smoke…from the hallway.

I nervously opened the condo door and the smell was so overwhelming I actually coughed! I glanced around and realized on top of smelling like crap, John had absolutely no furniture besides a mattress placed in the middle of the living room, a pair of WOMEN’s UNDERWEAR hanging from the mantel and a home-made collage of scantily-clad women ripped out of magazines and lovingly placed above the fireplace.

On top of that, there was stuff everywhere! The second bedroom was so filled with boxes of old clothes and junk that you couldn’t even open the door. And John was in bed in the master bedroom….with a questionably limited amount of clothes on.

The kicker? The back deck had absolutely no chairs, furniture nothing….except a smashed toy shark. Yup. A SHARK.

I. wanted. to. scream.

The couple looked thoroughly horrified and ran in and out of the condo in about 30 seconds flat. (I totally don’t blame them!)

I immediately called my brother-in-law who was of course upset when he heard about the condition of the condo. He wrote John an email titled “Issues With Condition of Apartment” and included scary words like “stern warning” and “reeked.”

John wrote back and proved that he either grew up in a barn or is a great comedian by starting off saying “Your email comes as a shock to me. The unit is impeccably clean.”


The nightmare doesn’t end there folks. Stay tuned for part two where I have a second showing in which John answers the door in his tightie whities.