Tuesday, June 22, 2010


Our landlords annoy the hell out of me. Well, the wife, who for all purposes that matter can be called THE landlord, even though her husband owns the house in a trust.

She has this bad habit of just stopping over whenever she wants without any notice. By state law, tenants are to be given 24 hours notice unless it's an emergency, like a reported gas leak. But at least once a week, she stops by for some asinine reason or another. I think she's trying to be helpful sometimes, but usually she just annoys me. Yesterday she came by twice to let me know one of our old neighbors, who hates cats, hates our cats because he sees them sometimes. And then she followed these visits up with a phone call about it.

Today she's here in the yard doing only-hell-knows-what, but I'm not about to go outside and be drawn into a conversation on the weather that I can't get out of without rudely telling her she's boring me and I'm going inside now. If she knows for sure I'm here, then there's no way I couldn't open the door without making it seem like I'm ignoring her, which I would be. So good fucking luck getting a nap in. When she's here in the yard, like right now, I can't let the dogs into the yard to go to the bathroom because she brings her own dog who doesn't like other dogs, and she always asks me to keep my own inside. So my girls can't go to the bathroom and go nuts because they can detect another dog and another person in the yard. This drives them nuts and makes them act up and whine, and their whining prevents Charlotte from even beginning to take a nap, which she needs today and is fussy about needing. When the girls are whining and Charlotte's fussing from tiredness, there's no chance in hell of being able to sew or make the necklaces I need to get made and shipped. I have to hold Charlotte in one arm, and so have one hand free. I can type now as fast with my right hand alone as some people can with both hands.

But it's a small town and it's not as easy as telling the LL to quit coming by. She lives a mile away and can claim she's "just driving by" on her way somewhere, which she's claimed.

She thinks this house is an upscale house, but it's not. It's a fixer-upper and we've been doing the work on it. Painting, staining the wood walls that haven't seen even varnish in probably 40 years, putting in baseboards where needed, some electrical work, etc.. It also predates central heating, meaning we have a fireplace to heat the place with, and use space heaters and electric blankets on nights when it's cold. The carpet is from the 70's.

Her own son is my and Cody's age, and he's extremely irresponsible. The only reason she rented the house to me and Cody is that she was impressed with Cody working for Apple. She's under the impression that all "young" people are like her son. She thinks the world of him, so whatever he does is the best anyone his age that anyone can do. So if he doesn't pay his bills, no one else his age will pay their bills either. In other words, her son is so perfect that he's the most responsible and mature that can possibly be expected of others his age. He takes care of nothing, so we won't. I sometimes think she's spying on us. She asks in her frequent stops if we're remembering to do this or that. It shocked her when she asked if we're remembering to water to avocado trees and I told her that not only are they watered, but regularly fertilized with avocado-specific fertilizer, and the garden is also receiving the correct fertilizer.

I guess that, until we own, we're just going to have to put up with annoying people. We won't make waves or tell her to leave us alone until a new lease is signed. We signed this time from February 1st (even though her brother-in-law didn't get his ass out of the house until February 5th, with us outside in a UHaul full of our stuff) through December 31st. Since there's no rent control, we'd rather try to get a lease renewal for as little of a raise in rent as possible for another year, and then split at the end of 2011. Realistically we can't get better rent. It's as cheap (for the area) as it is because she and her husband use the garage for their personal storage. Yeah. We can't use the garage. They almost kept the laundry room as well (accessible from the outside) until Cody's mom told her that by her keeping ALL the storage for this place, we were going to have to rent a storage unit ourselves.

So because the rent is as cheap as it is, especially for a house, we hope to stay here through next year, and then consider buying somewhere, probably Pennsylvania, or a vague possibility of Washington. Love Oregon, but property taxes are killer in a state with no sales tax.


  1. If they are using the garage for storage there isn't much you can do about when they stop because they would have every right to their stuff in the garage. At least that is the way it is here speaking as a former landlord. The 24 hour notice usually only applies to access to the inside and not to any upkeep or access to what is their's.

  2. The garage can be accessed from outside. The inside access has been blocked off. They promised, unfortunately not in writing, that the garage would have been cleaned out by now. Fine, they can come and deal with the contents of the garage when they want, but they need to fucking not mess around in the yard, put their dog in the yard and tell us to keep our dogs inside while they and their dog are here, knock to come in and use the bathroom/chat/take pictures/whatever.

    They don't give 24-hour notice for ANYTHING, even though it was written in the lease. And literally they just left. How much notice did I have? A knock on the door. I saw through the window who was here, and that's how much notice. She wanted to come inside and take pictures. I'm in my goddamned bathrobe, nothing on underneath, and just got Charlotte down for a rare nap and was about to eat. But she woke Charlotte up. It feels like I may as well have the landlord and her husband living inside with me. It feels like I'm always on call for them. If I don't answer when she calls, "I know this is a cell phone number, so why are you ignoring me?" Um, because we just sat down to have lunch? I was in the shower? I was taking a nap? It's none of your damned business? Quit calling me every single day, especially more than once a day?

    Oh, and when Charlotte started crying upon being woken up, she had the gall to tell me, "Just let her cry. It's good for her lungs. I don't mean to sound like I'm criticizing your parenting, but..." But what? She is. She can shut the fuck up. Charlotte gave her wet-cry. I'm not going to let my baby cry in a wet diaper just to let her cry. If I want her parenting advice, I'll ask for it. Which I won't, because her son's not exactly the type of person I want my own child to grow up to be like.

  3. Would it be possible to say when she knocks, "I just got Charlotte down for a nap and she needs quiet, could you come back in 2 (or whatever number) hours? I'll be ready for you then." I know she should really give you 24 hours, but it might her realize that she's imposing on you, if she's not so pushy that she's entirely clueless about other peoples' needs.


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