I called my friendÂ Norma this afternoon, she also works in the rental business. We chat about how thing are going and she tells me about this property she’s renting which has attracted hordes of interesting potential tenants.
Renting in Sketchy Areas
Landlords that buy investment property can be so blinded by cash flow that they ignore a sketchy area. This isÂ problem because people who are inexperienced enough to be blinded by cash flow are unlikely to have the skills to keep the bad apples out of their apartments.
As a property manager you never get to pick where your properties are. In some areas you get the joyful experience of picking the best of the bad. For instance in South Oshawa you’ll get to pick from 80% of single mothers on Ontario Works. The good ones have boyfriends to help pay the rent (totally illegally). The rest of the 20% who’ll apply are equally bad. I’m awesome at selecting great tenants but even I can’t create great tenants out of thin air, you’ll have to appeal to a higher power for that.
So my friend Norma is renting this apartment above a store at Victoria Park and St Clair Avenue, an area known as Dawes Road. She’s shown the apartment 20 times already and she’s telling me about the potential applicants for her apartment. First there was the tenant who was desperate to move from her old place because she was “being eaten alive by bedbugs and cockroaches.” Her next story got us both laughing so hard we almost peed ourselves.
I know Norma prescreened this tenant well on the phone. Apparently the applicant was very polite. The good stuff started to happen at the showing. Quite frankly her chances of renting were already zero because of her bad case of meth mouth and relentless pacing during the entire conversation.
Applicant – I hope you take F@#king cash, I got the F@#king cash here
Norma – uhmm you need to fax in an application
Applicant – I got a F@#king cat, do you take F@#king cats?
Norma – Yes, pets are allowed
Applicant – You don’t need to worry… my F@#king ex has my seven F@#king kids andÂ they won’t be coming over here.
Norma – Uhmmm OK
Applicant – And don’t worry about this F@#king guy here (waves in the general direction of her boyfriend du jour) he won’t be F@#king moving in.
Norma – Hmmm OK
Applicant – I can F@#king move in tomorrow
Norma – Hmmmm
I wish I had to make these kinds of stories up. That’s why Norma and I jawbone all the time, commiseration. We need to stick together…
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