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Landlord Blues: Renting out the house from hell

I am using this blog to publish extracts from my third book on the subject of dealing with tenants from hell. The aim of the book and blog is to give people an insight into what the life of a landlord can be like and to provide tips for making landlords’ lives easier. This is done by describing real experiences of our worst-case scenarios. This should help you avoid getting into the same fixes.

'Look your starting to do my head in now. leave me alone or ill start legal proceedings'
02 May 2014 @ 21:49

Adrian then received a call from  Jason’s housing advice worker. She spouted some jargon, questioning  Adrian as though he were answerable to her, until finally he said: 
‘Right, I’ve answered your questions; now answer mine. Is it right that you are not going to re-house  Jason until we have exhausted all the legal channels? Do you realise that this is costing us a fortune, as we also can’t re-let the other room while he is there? Yes, I am aware he is classed as “vulnerable” by yourselves. He is an alcoholic and drug addict. He has problems, but I also have problems. I have to pay for all the damage he is doing to my house and I have to pay the mortgage and all the bills, while he is blocking the letting of the other room, not paying his top-up and constantly wrecking my house. I am not a charity and we don’t get funding from anyone to house so-called vulnerable people. What about my problems? Are you saying you are not going to re-house him yet even though his notice has run out?’ 
The woman said: ‘No, I am not saying that,’ but she didn’t say what she was saying. 
‘Well,’  Adrian carried on, ‘I’ve told him that the minute he walks out of that door of our house, he will enter the real world. When he wrecks anyone else’s house, and doesn’t pay his rent, they’ll show him the door quick-sharp. Even the council won’t put up with tenants behaving like that.’ 
I think other landlords might have more effective methods than we had for getting rid of the likes of him (but we didn't want to go down that road). Of course, we played the usual game of assuming he had left, as any normal, decent person would have.
 Adrian (17.37, 2nd November):
Jason. As your notice has expired I assume you have moved out. I will be there to redecorate house Monday at 9.30am.  Adrian
 Adrian (13.20, 3rd November):
Jason.  Don’t forget I don’t have a key to your room as u smashed up the old door then changed it to the current one. Also you haven’t given me the repayment code for the bond. C u Monday.  Adrian.
Jason (13.25, 3rd November):
Im starting moving my stuff tonight n I got appointment Monday morning  with council to help me out with sheltered accommodation. By the way whats all this about me exposing myself. Have you got cameras in the bathroom or something. id like to get to the bottom of it. 
We were tempted to write back that you don’t need cameras when a man comes to the door with no pants on and only a t-shirt. 
Nothing then happened for a few weeks, but it was bugging us the whole time. It took a couple of weeks before I could face texting again, as we always got into a spat. 
Me (10.04, 23rd November):
Jason. You have made no personal contribution to the rent for 4 months. Please make a payment today. We are paying the mortgage, the council tax, the water, the astronomical electricity bills. Please pay up. And get rid of all of your things as  Adrian has asked you to. We need the loft emptied. Please leave so we can get new tenants who pay the rent and don’t wreck our house. We’ve also had to pay to get the house repainted because of the dreadful way you and others treat it. Do the decent thing. Don’t say you’re going to, because that means nothing. Only actions count now. 
Jason (13.12, 23rd November):
i understand the rent thing but the electricity thing you can blame on lil nigerea upstairs. the electric heaterin my room hasnt worked for a year n my electric heater i bought packed in last summer so im only using the electricity for my t.v. my light n as for the rent i intend on squaring u up because u n ade been good to me. apparently i may be able to get a grant for back payment of rent
Me (13.45, 23rd November):
What nonsense. You can’t get a grant for backpayment of rent. You’ve spent the money on alcohol. Give us the money in our hands. I told you not to make any more stupid, empty promises. We have a lot of experience and know that such promises mean nothing. Money talks. Get out so that we can rent our house to people who have values.
Jason (14.06, 23rd November):
good luck with that one the place is a depressing damp hovel. cant put gas on coz o.k. thinks that leaving the hot tap on heats the house. the guy even turns the hob on coz he thinks it warms the house n i an prove that. alan saw him do it the other day. cant sleep coz oki keeps seting the fire alarms off. who ever you get in after me will move out straight away if they have any sense so like i said. good luck on that one
Me (14.12, 23rd November):
Well bloody move out then. If it’s a hovel it’s because you’ve turned it into one. Take some responsibility, stop blaming everyone else and get out.
Jason (14.18, 23rd November):
I may have got a bit of foam every where but ive soerted out your back garden and payed for new cistern when wasn’t me but ade that broke it n the place will remain a dank, dirty hovel as long as you keep moving certain people in. my advice to tou would be cut your losses n sell up. if you can find someone to buy the swamp
Me (14.20, 23rd November):
Yes, we’re going to steer clear of drug-taking, selfish alcoholics who break doors, store piles of rubbish in the attic and spare room and bring in people who break fire extinguishers and who don’t pay the rent and then try and blame everyone else… Get out
 Jason (14.22, 23rd November):
look your starting to do my head in now. leave me alone or ill start legal proceedings
Me (14.25, 23rd November):
What for? It’s only libel if it’s not true. You’ve had more than three months’ notice already and you’re still there despite a court order telling you to leave. You’re the one in contravention of the law, not me.
 Jason (14.27, 23rd November):
health n safety my love. n.f.y.i. i know you can only get someone done for slander and defamation if you’ve lost something
Me (14.30, 23rd November):
Please pay the rent and leave our house. You are occupying it illegally. Feel free to get Health and Safety in. You can point out to them all the damage you’ve done to our house since their last inspection. You can now stop your texts and instead start moving out.
Jason (14.32, 23rd November):
What damage. ive cleaned up any mess ive made. apart from atic that im gona do on Sunday
Me (14.37, 23rd November):
What about the wrecked door and carpets for a start (and I dread to think about the state of our furniture and furnishings in your room)? Anyway, I’m not interested in any more ‘discussion’ today. I want the rent and the room back. We need people who know how to treat property and how to treat us, as decent landlords. Stop texting and start moving your things and yourself out, as the court order has instructed you to do.
Jason (14.40, 23rd November):
l.o.l. the bed n carpet was so skanky when i moved in i had to buy nw ones and decorate. i havnt got time for this now im off to hospital so please stop bothering me today
Me (14.41, 23rd November):
Yes, I have medical problems too, but only your ones matter.
Jason (14.47, 23rd November):
how sweet
Jason (14.48, 23rd November):
hope u o.k. though
That was all on the Friday. I told  Adrian about it and he told me to stop texting in case I got done for harassment. 
‘Well,’ I said, ‘I told him to stop texting me at one point, so that could be seen as him harassing me. And I also mentioned things like him wrecking the house, which he wouldn’t want highlighted.’ But I did concede. It was 'doing my 'ead' in as well.



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