Shortly after I finished yesterday’s post, my phone started ringing.
A [tag-ice]tenant[/tag-ice] who has never complained about anything before, was calling to report a barking dog.
It was the new tenants’ dog. I could even hear it barking over his cell phone.
The newest tenants had only been in their apartment for a few days, and there was already plenty of trouble.
Then I received word from the next door neighbor.
“This used to be a nice neighborhood until they moved in..”
So Houston we have a problem.
But how did it all happen?
Here are three things that went wrong.
1. I broke my own rules
My rule for my rentals is no dogs. Period. At least on the inside.
“But he’s an outside dog.”
Yeah, I fell for it. And he is an outside dog. A very loud one.
I should not have taken these tenants, even though one is a returning tenant who had rented from us before.
After 19 years of [tag-tec] landlording[/tag-tec] you’d think I would have known better.
Never break one of your own rules because you feel sorry for them or it’s just convenient to go ahead and take them.
2. I forgot how messy this particular problem can get
I’ve got upset[tag-self] tenants[/tag-self] and neighbors to contend with. Before July 1st, I had happy tenants and neighbors. That’s quite a contrast.
Don’t rile people up any more than is necessary. It isn’t worth it.
By bringing in the new tenants with the dog and believing their story that the innocent poor homeless creature they had taken in from the streets would never bark, I had created a potential firestorm. Of course dogs bark.
I’ve got problems now that may not be solvable. That dog may bark from now to the Judgment Day. Or I may have to make the new tenants move out or tell them they’ll have to give up little lovable but loud Scruffy.
3. I took the easy way out and now I’m boxed in
These tenants moved in almost on top of the last tenants. There was little downtime. Only a few hours.
I like it that way. A nice rent check safely deposited and I’m feeling good.
Besides, as I’ve said, one was an old tenant from the past. She had been very good and I honestly wanted this to work.
What I should have done was turn them down. Then I should have worked to rent the apartment to others. After all, we’re still at the top of the peak season.
Do as I say, and not as I do. Don’t repeat the mistake I made.
Think well ahead and consider all future problems. Then act accordingly.
Stay tuned for Part II tomorrow and I’ll tell you how it all turned out.