Well, let’s start with making up names for everyone. The three landlords are Dave, Sandy, and Sean. Dave and Sandy have owned this and other apartment buildings for years, and are also husband and wife. Sean is somehow related to them, and is their best friend. He was my friend for a while too.
So, I move in on November of 2008. Getting the rent on-time was a little shaky, but Dave and Sandy were willing to work with me on it, understanding I just got unemployed and was working on finding a job. I finally paid off all the backed rent a few months later, and after that, things are just swell. Sean isn’t a landlord, or even in the picture until mid-late 2009. A nasty eviction gets rid of another VERY RUDE tenant who determinately made sure she burnt her bridges. Then Sean moves in, and becomes the Super. Great! Me and him get along very well, but constant strife between him and the other two tenants is a constant in the environment.
So, great. I go about my own business, Rent’s not only on time, but sometimes even early. Sean became a partner to Dave and Sandy to help run things since they live on the outer edges of town. I keep to myself for the most part, and just do my own thing. My cats became a problem however due to an outbreak of giardia, and I was forced to get rid of them. Complaints about the smell increased by the other tenants as I up-rooted and was cleaning/throwing out/finding things that were soiled by them. During the last few days of getting everything in trash bags and/or laundry bags, I’m served a notice to get rid of the cats and the smell, or get out. [This is when I still had the cats, and was forced to find new homes for them]. So I got rid of them, much to my heart’s malcontent, and set to work cleaning up my apartment as best I could.
Mind you, I live in it daily, so it’s very, very hard for me to smell the smell everyone’s complaining about.
I realize $150 later that cleaning the carpets of the odor simply won’t cut it, so I go ahead by Dave and Sandy’s advice and replace the carpeting, tack strips, padding, EVERYTHING from the living room and the hallway. I maxed out my home depot credit card getting everything I needed, and had the new carpet in close to the deadline of one week that they gave me to turn the place upside down and clean everything. Everything was replaced, except for the living room carpet and padding.
During this time, I was told to go to Sean for more advice if I needed it, being 19 years old and all I don’t know too much. So I did. I got close to 2 times of advice on certain subjects before he became quite verbally abusive with me, at first when we were alone, and then increasing to when I had a friend or colleague helping me.
For instance, he yells at me for “sitting on my [censored] with my thumb up my [censored] doing nothing all day.” The times he favors to do this is after I get back from a 12 hour night-shift, and I try to get some sleep before I go back in that night. According to him, when he was my age he used to “Work 12 hours, go hang with his buddies at the bar, sleep for an hour, and go back to work, and he did that for 14 years!” He’s constantly comparing me to the modern-day him in forms of knowledge on what I’m doing, free time (he’s retired), and financial situation.
The rest of the carpet [living room, hallway] has been put in for a day or so, and Sean tells me he can still smell it in the bedroom, and demands I remove the carpet and padding from there and replace it too. I oblige, removing it all only to discover self-adhesive-carpeting padding layered throughout the entire bedroom, underneath the padding. It’s like they took the stuff, but ripped off the carpet, decided against removing it, and stapled the new padding on the old stuff. I was told [by a Sean with a colorful and angry vocabulary directed at me] to scrape it all up. So I start scraping it up. I get 1/5 of it done, and I get called into work for later that night. I take a nap from noon to 2, and get back to work. I have a friend come over, and he gives me a hand scraping it up. Sean appears outside my window and to quote “This is all you’ve gotten done all afternoon?! You have 24 hours to get this all done, or you’re out of here!” This is a 12X12 area, not too big, but this stuff is thick and very hard to scrape off. We get to work.
It’s done by 1AM, a friend of mine stayed while I went to work to finish it for me. What a buddy. So anyway, I do some finishing touches, and go out to ask Sean if it’s good enough. He starts verbally abusing me immediately. I go back to my apartment, and Dave comes by the building. I ask him if it’s good to go, it is, so I go down to Home Depot, get another gallon of Kilz, and get the bedroom finished by 4 PM, 1 hour to go till the 24 hours is up. I ask Sean if I’m all clear, he says yes. Good! Now I just got to wait
Oh crap! I didn’t know it cut me off. So sorry!!! Anyway, I’ve been told I’m evicted now, none of the landlords will help me with it now, and Sean demands to come in and paint, saying I’m not capable of doing it. What am I supposed to do? I’m gonna let him in to paint, but for the love of cake I’m only 19 and have no idea what my rights are. What am I supposed to do? Do I take them to small-claims? Make a deal to mutually break the contract and leave once it’s fixed?