Damn you, our almost-landlord!

My boyfriend and I have been looking for an apartment since September; I use a manual wheelchair full-time, limiting the places we can even view. There must be no more than one step to enter (we’d put up a portable ramp), no steps in the apartment, and doorways at least 28" wide. Also, we’re okay but don’t have unlimited funds.

The real estate agent with whom we’d been working is great - she’d been working her ass off for us, but nothing quite hit the mark. We kept looking on our own while she looked as well.

Then one day while I was perusing ads, we hit the motherlode! Another agent (Schmuck) was renting his own property! It’s a wonderfully located two bedroom apartment with a carport, no stairs, and a bathroom I could enter/use without killing myself, all at a decent rent. Schmuck’s friend/friend’s wife were the tenants - they were moving to live with friend’s sick mom. We visited twice and decided to take it. I told our original realtor that we might’ve found something, but we’d let her know for sure if we signed a lease. (Just in case. I must be psychic.).

We were to sign the rental agreement this past Saturday, but Schmuck canceled; the friend/tenant’s mom (the one who they were moving to take care of) died. He had to go to the funeral, so he had to put us off 'til Monday. Okay, fine. I worried that maybe they wouldn’t be moving, but I figured since he told us to come in on Monday, everything was okay. (I think you see where this is heading.).

Come Monday, it was our turn to cancel because of work committments. He was very gracious - come in on Thursday, he said. Great!

“We really do want the apartment,” I said. “I hope you consider us the new tenants!”

“Yes, yes - I’m not showing to to anyone else, no way. Just come in Thursday and sign the papers, etc.”

Today’s Thursday. My boyfriend picked me up from work (after working sixteen hour days for the past few days) and we drove right over. The secretary tells us that he’s “really, really sorry”, but Schmuck had to cancel again. “He misplaced your cell number, but he e-mailed you and left a message on your home phone”. She hands us a manila envelope, we thank her and leave; we figured it was our credit reports and maybe papers to sign. We open the magic envelope and withdraw our credit reports along with a typed note that said, essentially, this:

“I’m really sorry to do this to you on such short notice, but the couple renting the place now decided that they’d like to stay. Since I’ve known him and his family such a long time, I feel obligated to let them stay. [yada yada yada, very sorry, yada yada]”.

We were absofuckinglutely gobsmacked (as I saw some washed-up 80’s singer say about…something.)! What in fuck’s name? This one place that we found that was perfect slipped right out of our grasp. After we were told that he considered us the new tenants! And he fucking didn’t have the testicular fortitude to tell us to our faces. I wonder what would’ve happened had we not canceled on Monday? We’d’ve signed the goddamned papers…and then what? Been told to fuck off? Or moved in, then gotten evicted a month later? I’m not angry at the couple - I understand their position completely. Schmuck, though… This is why one shouldn’t mix friendship and business.

When I called to let him know we got his little present, he said he’d keep looking for us and “won’t charge a broker’s fee or anything”. I should fucking hope not! (Not that we’re going to take him up on it, since we no longer trust him.). My next call was to our original real estate agent, who was horrified at the story and has something on tap for us to view, thank God. She’ll be getting a glowing letter from me regardless of whether she finds us a mansion or a shack.


Good luck finding somewhere suitable and with a more reliable landlord.

Thanks! I almost feel guilty for complaining about this while people are losing jobs and homes - we still have places to live and are working, at least. But it still pisses me off, mainly because it was difficult to find such a perfect place.

He sounds like a decent enough landlord - it is tough to find ones that are respectful of their tenants. It didn’t work out for you and that sucks, but as someone who has been on the opposite end of this situation I have to say the landlord wasn’t pure evil.

Actually - while I can understand the disappointment and frustration of losing out on a place that seemed perfect - I don’t see what the rant is about. The current tenants wanted to stay. End of story. Who knows what woulda coulda shoulda happened if you hadn’t canceled on Monday; fact is you did cancel on Monday, and you hadn’t signed anything.

I can’t fault the landlord here.

Hey, welcome to Real World 101 - you don’t quit your current job until you’ve actually signed a contract with a new place of work. You don’t stop looking for a place until you’ve actually signed the papers.

I think at least part of the rant is that in the OP’s case only a few potential rental units are actually usable by her. Finding anything she can rent is difficult. Thus, finding a “perfect” unit and not being able to rent it is what is frustrating, not that the current tenants decided to stay.

When God closes one door, he opens another. This will work out for the best, just watch.

Hmm - the entire rant is about the agent. The thread title is ‘Damn you, our almost-landlord!’. She says that the former agent who had been ‘been working her ass off for us’ (but was about to get squat for her troubles when the OP almost went with another agent) would be getting a ‘glowing letter’ no matter what property she found - her way of ‘sticking it’ to Schmuck, I guess.

Hey, apartment hunting is a bitch. I’m sure she’s frustrated, but she’s not the only one with specific needs that narrow ones ability to find a suitable place to live. But I don’t see the landlord deserving of the pitting.

I’m sorry you lost the apartment, but it wasn’t really his fault. The current tenants decided to stay. Should he have told you in person or over the phone? Probably. But he didn’t. I’m sure you’ll find a place even better.

The prospective landlord was another real estate agent (not the one they’d been working with, but someone they were acquainted with).

Yabbut, most of the time He forgets to put a wheelchair ramp in front of it…


This (emphasis mine) is EXCELLENT! I’m totally using this phrase instead of balls, guts, courage or valor from now on. Thanks, Cosmopolitan!