// she's only happy in the sun.
Jan 11

the joys of renting.

sometimes living in LA can be overwhelming. and sometimes it can be the perfect fit. i’m learning to take the good with the bad and roll with the punches. yeah, the drivers have no patience and you may not become insta-friends with the barista’s at your coffee shop…but it has its perks. the sunshine in the middle of january being one very giant perk. as much as i love the romance of snow and the huddling by a fire…nothing says embrace the outside more than 72 degree sunshine saturated days.

photo found here.

so yes, los angeles is becoming home for us. or maybe it’s just that our our little apartment is becoming home for us. it’s spacious yet cozy. its nooks and crannies are filled with my vintage camera collection and other little treasures. we have our favorite coffee mugs and a distinct breakfast routine. our couch is perfect for snuggling and/or holding a meeting with the townspeople (should the need arise). and when we walk in after being away for the day it has that indiscernible scent that announces: hey welcome back! kick off your shoes and get comfortable. your pajamas are right where you left them.

however, there are two things that i wish were different about our little abode.

1. parking

we have to rely on on-street parking. this is like relying on…(trying to think of a suitable comparison. and failing). i don’t know. think of something unreliable – like the healthcare system, or your cat’s mood, or movie sequels. yep. that’s how hard it is to rely on finding street parking outside our place. what this means is once we find a spot on our street we subconsciously feel like we can’t leave the house again. the annoyance of having to risk not finding a spot upon our return means that we have to weigh up every outing with the question: IS IT REALLY WORTH NOT FINDING PARKING WHEN WE COME HOME?

and suffice to say, more often than not, the answer to that question is a no.

2. loco landlord

our landlord is, well to put it nicely, a real character. to put it not nicely, he’s a mean spirited, disillusioned bully with a vendetta. when we signed our lease we got some red flags that warned us that he was a little on the eccentric side. like that moment when he told us we couldn’t have plants inside. or wear heels. or have people over without written consent. but now we’re getting the full dose of just how different his perception of reality is to that of, oh, the rest of the world.

a few weeks ago i got in trouble because i allowed someone into the building who didn’t live here. there was a guy at the gate who is a friend of my upstairs neighbors and wanted to let my neighbor know to move his car so it didn’t get towed…so of course i let him in. he was doing a good deed. i’m PRO good deeds. only to have my landlord stomp downstairs and give me a 20 minute lecture on letting strangers into the building. he started yelling about how i could have been assaulted and how he doesn’t want people to be let in the gates because they might serve him with papers and he doesn’t want to get sued. are you re-reading that last line because it doesn’t make sense? yep. exactly.

the other fun interaction we had with him was when we realized the dryer that we share with our next door neighbor and our landlord (who lives upstairs) is hooked up to OUR power. so basically we pay for the neighbors and the landlord to dry their clothes. we don’t mind some much about the neighbors because the washing machine is hooked to their power, so i guess that sort of evens things out but the landlord just gets to use both appliances on someone else’s dime. there is no way that is fair and it was never discussed in the lease. so dev brings it up with him one day casually – just mentions in passingĀ  ‘hey, it looks like dryer is hooked to our power. is that correct?’ and the landlord flips out. starts ranting and raving and telling us we should leave. he starts screaming that he is not stealing from us and that we are trying to get out of our lease. dev had to tell him to come back when he’d cooled down. and he did with a revised lease in hand that stated that if we didn’t want the dryer to be connected to our power, he’d just take it away and we’d have to go to the local laundromat. DRAMATIC much?

but wait, there’s more. the other day we came home to a fire in our building. luckily it was contained and dealt with quickly so it only caused damage to a small area in our neighbors bedroom. but today i heard our landlord yelling at our neighbor and accusing him of starting the fire. how did he start the fire? by plugging in a space heater. and now we have all been given written notice that we are supposed to check with our landlord before we plug in any appliances. er. what?

as much as i’m a rule follower, i’m not about to traipse over to my landlords apartment (right above ours) and ask him if it’s ok for me to dry my hair. or make toast. not going to happen.

so, like the dutiful tenants we are, we’re bound into our lease and we’re not going anywhere anytime soon. but i’m going to stockpile these stories so that when my future kids one day tell me i’m crazy, i can say OH REALLY?!!? let me tell you a story. now THAT’S crazy.

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3 comments on “the joys of renting.”

  1. katya Says:

    Oho-ho! That’s so crazy!!! I’m not living in US, so I don’t know much about landlords.. Is there any athority that can control them??

  2. sjj Says:

    hey, you don’t know me but i follow your blog and wanted to say that your landlord’s behavior is against the law and sounds like it could be grounds to break your lease. every lease includes the impled warranty of quiet enjoyment, which you can read about here:

  3. Jasmine Says:

    Haha-I have a friend who flatted with her landlord, only to find out he was posing as her landlord (taking all the rent, not paying bills) so she had to leave so as repo people didn’t take all her stuff!

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