Saturday, January 31, 2009

Chilly turns out that the wimpy cold kids at Lottridge really aren't so wimpy after all! Whoops!
They kept saying "It's really cold in here." and I would check the thermostat - it says 71F. I told them - it's an old house get used to it!
Until I sat here for a bit waiting and you know what? It's effing freezing! What the hell?
So I got my themometer and it's 62F in here. Ack! This is a brand new furnace and I just changed the filter three months ago!
Except I went downstairs to check on it and the damn thing is all screwed up, plugging up the intake. I replaced it again and it's getting warmer already. Whoops.
Moral of the day - not all cold tenants are whiny. Eep
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Monday, January 26, 2009

Oh, and some other stuff...

You know what sucks? $1300 in gas bills. For one month. In December. January is going to be much, much higher. Yikes! At least they're only $38 in the summer. It's coooold this year.

Rob is all gung-ho fired up lately. I don't know what's gotten him all riled up. The accountant at his company has been feeding his ego lately, because he is impressed with our business plan and investment strategy. Which at the moment seems to entail using every last penny of equity and leverage we can find to grow as quickly as possible, and then in five years we'll have critical mass (when the whole kit and caboodle starts replicating itself without too much personal input). Ron, the accountant, has worked with Rob's boss since time immemorial and saw him succeed the same way. He now has 700 rental units clearing $900K in profit per year. PROFIT. And he could have had much more but got involved in land development and speculating instead. Which has also been hugely profitable.

It's scary and dicey and dangerous, but I think we'll make a go of it. Hopefully I can look back at this post in five years and not feel stupid!

Trouble Brewing...

I fucking hope these kids don't burn me. They still owe me a bunch of money towards last months' rent (called Saturday as the chic got laid off last week, which sucks) to say they'll just pay ALL of it this weekend instead of half and half last weekend and this one, as they were planning. Blargh. I've only got $100 of their money as insurance and I hope that's enough. He can afford the rent without her income but still - if they bail Rob is going to have a shit-fit. As am I. Honestly - I had so many good applicants for this place, and these guys are still great, as long as they come through.

If they bail, I quit. ;) I will never rent to another promising young couple again. Unless they have kids and are stuck with each other. I mean it this time.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

This job sucks

And the pay is shitty too
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The new tenants have paid their deposit, and are moving in February 15. I think that's the best case scenario for this place. L. is moving out January 31, and he paid a last months' rent deposit, so even though he's bailing on his sixty days notice, I'm only losing half a months' rent. Which actually gives me time to get the carpets cleaned (which they BADLY need - blech) and a couple of small repairs made.

The new tenants, P&H, are pretty good. The caliber of tenant has really gone up since I started doing this 5 years ago (FIVE YEARS!! Holy crap). They are 25 & 36, been living together for nearly 3 years (which almost kinda makes him creepy now that I think of it, LOL), and they both have decent steady jobs that they've been at for awhile. They are very excited about the place and can't wait to move in. I always like that - I feel like I'm giving people a comfortable home to live in. Later I'll be swearing about it when something breaks on a late Saturday night, but for now I feel good about it!

The downstairs tenants at Lottridge, B&H, were a little disappointed. They missed the boat though! Their friends decided on Thursday that they would probably love to live there, but unfortunately for them I had already signed the new tenants. I hope it doesn't cause problems, but honestly I'd rather have them not know each other so well. I don't want my whole house being like a big friends' party house.

The stupid fridge is STILL on the porch at Sanford. The guy that said he was picking it up bailed and nobody told me. So I have to call the scrappers and get that gone. Oh, and the front porch light is out as well. I'm sending Rob to do that one.

Hopefully things will be quiet now for a couple of weeks.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

I think we have it rented!

Tonight I had two couples show up for their appointments out of three. So all told I was 7 for 8. I think that's the best yet!
I offered it to the good couple from Monday but they never called me back so pft on them. They probably couldn't get the deposit.

So tonight the nice couple from st. Catharine's (no kids two cats) got the place! Well, as soon as they pay their deposit that is. He's 36 and she is 25, they've lived together for 2.5 years and they both have good jobs. Plus they LOVE it! That's my favourite part. I hope they stay awhile.
I hope they pay their deposit so I don't have to do this anymore.

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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

EVERYONE showed up!

I had five appointments booked for yesterday to show Lottridge #1. I've learned in the past few years to double book - usually only 50% of applicants actually show up, and if you have more than one applicant there at a time, it creates interest and tension.

Anyway, they *all* showed up and it was a madhouse! Ah well. Here are the applicants:

1. Young couple, expectant mother due, like, RIGHT NOW. They've just now figured out that they drafty crummy 1-bedroom place is not suitable for a child and need to move asap. But they have a few conditions. She is on assistance and doesn't want to tell them that her gainfully employed boyfriend is living with her and chipping in. Oh, and could I falsify my rent receipts and rental agreement to show that she pays $700 per month, not $875. Because then they would be suspicious. NEXT.

2. Young family (so very young!) with a 21-month-old little girl, very polite. Mother is not working, recently lost job with plant cutbacks, is going back to college. Father works for his own parents at well-established local autobody shop - good income. They are well-spoken. Moving asap because of problems with other tenants where they currently live.

3. Young family #2 (even younger!) with a 20-month old daughter. Quiet, shy, seem unsure of themselves. Love the place (of course, everyone does). Boyfriend works but they don't make much money, barely enough to cover it. She is also on assistance, not working. She is gone back to school to get her GED. Eventually wants to go to college to be a law clerk. Medium-sized mixed dog.

4. Single dude. No references, no job (student), no visible means of support. NO.

5. Family of 4, children aged 1 & 3. Small jack russell terrier. Seem a bit obnoxious. Want to live there forever. Don't make a lot, and currently going back to renting after selling their house.

I have one more showing tomorrow night to a single father who has his two boys on the weekends.

I like option #2 a lot and called them to tell them so - but they haven't called me back! So I dunno yet. Option 5 looks good on paper, but I just didn't get a great feeling from them. I know I shouldn't go by gut feelings, but I do. I really liked the young kids with their daughter. I hope they come through for me.

We shall see!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

It has been 12 hours without an emergency...

Wow! I feel refreshed. Ha! I got the tap fixed this morning. First I went to Lowes since it's closer. The guy there informed me that it's a Delta faucet type that's not made anymore and they don't have any of the cartridges. He sent me to a Plumbing Supply place that was closed. I cannot leave the water off until tomorrow.

I then went to Home Depot, where the plumbing guy took my cartridge, and climbed way high up in the shelves to a box labelled "Delta parts", fished out new cartridge guts to me, and gave them to me NO CHARGE! WOOT! Ten minutes at the house and it was all fixed.

Chris the snow guy came out and did all the houses for $40 again. I think I'm ripping him off.

I'm also getting better at taking pictures of apartments. I took the camera with me since Lottridge #1 looks way better than the website photos showed. I took all new photos and updated the website, I think it's much improved:

Lottridge #1

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Oh my effing god.

This is not even funny. Here I was thinking I'd start a blog and talk about my houses - so I guess my houses have decided to give me something to talk about!

Lottridge #1 called me at 7:30. We were just on our way out to move the old fridge out of Sanford #3. His bathtub tap is frigging Niagara Falls. Turns out it's just a new cartridge (yay cartridge faucets!) but the hardware stores are closed. Yay! So the entire house has no water until about 10 am tomorrow morning. Good stuff.

This is a public service announcement - always install a panel so you can access individual shut offs without tearing out a wall. It is only a matter of time before something dies and you need to turn off the water. It is much easier to turn off the broken line instead of having the whole house off.

Also the inevitable came up. He hasn't got the rent. Sigh. I gave him the grace until today but he just didn't come up with the money. So he's leaving at the end of the month. I loved him as a tenant. But after his daughter moved out in September I knew it was a matter of time. Then closing his business nailed the coffin.


New fridge and it fits! Rob can just quit waiting to say "I told you so" - he was pretty sure I was going to measure wrong.

I do suck at measuring.
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This is where I sit this morning waiting the inevitable "9 til noon" for the fridge delivery
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Friday, January 9, 2009


Just seeing if I can upload from my blackberry
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This house is trying to kill me

Sanford #2 emailed me last night that her fridge was out again. Who knows how long.

So I went this morning and flipped the effing breaker, AGAIN.

But - did S. plug his fridge back into that circuit? I know A. said he needed a breaker flipped again, I have to assume that when S. tripped the one he plugged it back into the old one. Sigh. I hope so! Because if I have to replace TWO fridges Rob is going to have a shit fit. Although it would really piss me off if he did that and didn't tell me it tripped again since he KNOWS that there is someone else's fridge on that circuit. Gawd. Hopefully we get the new fridge in on the weekend and all this will be a thing of the past.

The new door looks good, no frame damage.

Speaking of fridges, someone is coming to take the old one! My free ad on kijiji was basically "It's old, it's breaking down, trips breakers, it's on the 3rd floor and YOU have to remove it." and 3 people wanted it. People will take anything if it's free.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

I did it!

I am currently uploading my old LJ landlording posts to here. Yay me!

First post

Well - my first post here anyway! I decided to stop boring the hell out of my LJ friends (all three of them) with landlord posts and actually create a blog about our landlording adventures! I am going to *try* to import my old related LJ posts to blogger - wish me luck!

On to the pertinent business. I got a phone call today from Sanford #1.

HER: "Uh, we're getting a new door."
ME: "...."
HER: "R. got locked out in his underpants when he went to check the mail and nobody else was home. He didn't even have a phone, obviously, so he kicked in the door."
ME: "ACK!"
HER: "Don't worry, we're paying to replace it today, but I wanted to call and tell you and give you a new key for the deadbolt we're going to put on."

You know - never in my life have I ever kicked in a door. I wonder if I could even do it if I tried?

In other news, last week one of the roofers fell through the roof into my upstairs' tenants closet. TADA! Thankfully he wasn't hurt, but we ended up re-drywalling and insulating a 6x8 foot section of ceiling, not to mention washing about 6 loads of laundry for the tenants. And cleaning up gross old insulation.




We were planning out our upcoming year of growth and craziness last night and talking about finances. Hopefully the HELOC on Leinster will go well and we will be able to buy a couple more properties this summer. At least one anyway. And then one for us! More than a 1-bedroom! Yay!

Rob actually said "Why doesn't everybody do this?"

Please refer to above paragraphs to point out the idiocy of this question.

Hence why my own bathroom STILL has and effing plywood floor. At least we bought tiles. Sigh.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Water Sucks!

Have you noticed that 80% of my house drama has to do with water and it's various issues? :)The basement leak at Lottridge is as feared - foundation drains. Half the drywall is torn out and we have to dig a trench all around the basement, lay weepers and clear stone, install a sump pump, then re-tile and re-drywall the whole place. That should be a BLAST.