In the process of relocating, we decided to build a house instead of buying a pre-owned home. We were fortunate enough to find a rental house available where the landlord allowed pets, the backyard was fenced, and the landlord was willing to agree to a 6th month lease instead of the one-year lease most landlords wanted.
Everything was looking good until we moved in.
The rental house was not in the best physical condition, but the roof kept water out and the A/C system kept conditions moderate. We could struggle through. First, the landlord only provided us one key and we had to get another key cut. Then we realized that the garage lock was broken and the garage could not be secured. The garage door into the house could be locked, but not the outside garage door. I called the landlord, and he said he'd have a guy come out an install an opener. I called him back another time or two, having to leave a voice mail each time. We never did get that garage door opener installed, and I wasn't about to go through the hassle of paying for it myself and deducting it from the rent.
Then, one of the waste water drain lines in the basement started leaking. Fortunately, it was just a grey water line and not a black water line. It seems that at some point the pipe had broken off right at the basement foundation or just below it, and someone had just run the world's largest caulk bed around it to seal it up. Well, that caulk bed started leaking. Again, I called the landlord and left him several voice mails, and again there was no response. We resorted to running the dishwasher or washing machine separately, not at the same time, and we started keeping a mop in the basement to periodically push the water to the drain.
Finally, we sent in our 30-day notice with our final rent check. In that letter, we requested instructions on securing the property, returning the keys to the landlord, and performing our move-out walk-through so we could get our deposit check back. After 2 weeks, there was no response. Toward the end of February, we called and left him another voice mail requesting move-out instructions. No response. The day before our lease was up, we called again. Again, no response.
Finally, on the last day of our lease I close and lock all the windows, lock all the doors, and put the keys in a drawer in the kitchen. I called the landlord one last time and left him a voice mail that we were out of the house and letting him know where I'd placed the keys. I then called my Realtor and told her the same thing. Finally, I walked out the garage door, pulled it shut behind me, and verified that the house was properly secured.
My Realtor called me this morning after talking with our landlord. She wanted to verify where I had put the keys and asked if we happened to still have a key in our possession. I told her that no, I'd fully secured the house and left all of the keys inside.
Apparently, the landlord only has one key for the property, and it was the one that he gave us when we moved in.
He is now locked out of his own rental property.
Yes, I laughed, out-loud and loudly.