I am of two minds regarding bad tenants. First of all they are relatively few and far between. Second, most of the non payers are just unable to manage their money or down on their luck. The truly horrible tenants that I have met are a rarity. They know how to work the Landlord & Tenant Board like a Stradivarius. They’ll teach even experienced paralegals new tricks. With everything I have learned from this canny bunch, I suspect I could live rent free for a year at least. Still for the most part tenants are really good and pay their rent.
I don’t think enough emphasis is being put on educating new landlords to the perils of bad tenants. There’s a lot of talk about how rich you will get when your tenants pay off your mortgage, and the continuous appreciation of property, and lots and lots of people will take your money and teach you. No one ever talks about the nitty-gritty realities of the people side of the business and the toll it takes on you.
A few months back I served an N-4 to a lady out in Oshawa at a property I managed. She called me crying and she told me her daughter had died. I made the proper sounds and all that, but the first thing I did was double check using Google to see if she was telling the truth. She was not lying, a nine year old girl who was very sweet and charming had passed away. I met her when I rented her mom the place. So after I verified this horrible truth I felt like a real piece of crap. What the hell has dealing with this job done to me that I have become so suspicious and skeptical that I can no longer accept anyone’s word at face value? I’ve been lied to so many times I can’t even count. I’ve been conned and manipulated and I’ve given people chances that did not deserve them. That’s the truth. This job will change you and not necessarily for the better. Every time you think you’ve seen the worst, you end up being wrong. Most people have no idea how other people live.
After observing people for years now I can assure you it’s not “the other” people either. By far the most disgusting sights I have seen have been in white, middle-class people’s apartments. Real Canadian people. Almost 100% of the people I have evicted are also white, born right in Canada people. The most serious pest problems are the same. You might want to keep that in mind when selecting your tenants.