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The Joy of Being a Landlord.


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It was 2 weeks ago today that I felt really unwell with flu like symptoms, raging headache, violent shivering and sweats plus a high temperature. This condition was to last for a week until good Lady Melboy summoned the Doctor last Friday.

It was going to be hospital job but the Doctor said that she would give it another 24hrs and if I got worse then she would call for an ambulance. In the meantime it was a course of anti biotics and headache pills.

I had eaten very little in a week and the weight was dropping off me.

Now to the landlord bit of the story......................

A phone call on the Saturday from tenant to say they had no heating or hot water. Dont usually hear a thing from them from one year to the next normally....so why now Lord !

Luckily Plumber Son was in the area and a quick visit sorted out the boiler with new compnents and a £150 bill to me.

Tuesday... still next death, Mrs. Melboy takes a phone call from another tenant of mine giving notice to quit in March...... oh! and by the way all the fencing has blown down in a storm. £500 bill coming my way for that to be replaced.

Why do these things not happen when your firing on all 4 cylinders eh!

You don't read about these things happening in the Daily Fail when they are beating their gums about the joys of being a landlord and the path to untold riches do you. :D

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If I can't beat that I can at least equal it. ......in the last few weeks......these are just some of the issues

1. Returning to Essex from Birmingham 2 weeks ago. Car has a low tyre pressure warning system. I had just passed a sign on the M1 which said ' no hard shoulder for 1 mile' when tyre pressure alarm went off. Couldn't stop on M1 had to drive (slowly) for hallf mile with flat tyre until reached hard shoulder. Tyre ruined = £250 for a replacement.

2. Sale of a property taking forever.....so far the legals have taken nearly 8 months with no sign of exchange.....excuses from everyone.

3. X2 properties in the last few weeks with roof tiles blown off + damage to guttering & fences.

4. Gas central heating failure = new PCB then new pump.

5. Rent 3 weeks late on X1 rental.

6. Problem/ noisy tenants in another property.

You certainly learn to have to prioritise. :)

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Melboy - I wish you a speedy recovery. Richlist - get tyre and gap insurance - worth every penny.

There is no doubt when you are at your lowest ebb some b***** tenant will make it worse.

Here is my tale of woe:-

Hubby had a total knee replacement after an accident in mid October. At time of his surgery for that a heart condition was diagnosed that needs intervention - just as we were about to buy another BTL!

I took immediate action to batten down hatches and sit tight. Meanwhile I was waiting for a hospital appointment to deal with a tumour in my left foot which has been giving me grief for the past 20 years without me knowing what it was!

That was resolved in a 20 minute procedure so hobbled home to find we had missed a County Court hearing over a long standing deposit issue with a couple of fibbing Poles. Poles given judgement in our absence by a deputy district court judge (no better than a duff solicitor IMO) - despite proven rent debt to the value of the deposit. I found this out next day by phone. Straightaway applied for judgement to be set aside ...... another lengthy statement to the courts + fee of £60. Good job I can type at 70 WPM. I was livid.

Also rolling on is the case of tenants who are both waiting for divorce settlements and have exchanged contracts on a property but can't set a leaving date having given notice back in December - 4 amendments so far. Now they want to go part way through the month and only pay rent on day rate - as if! Now they have got monk on.

Lost car port in gales from another let 3 weeks ago and have scaffold up on yet another and pointer has gone off to Spain 'for a bit' while pavement barriers are costing £160 every 2 weeks!

The stars are not favouring landlords at present I'll wager.

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"Now they have got a monk on".

A fine old military expression that I have not heard for many years. :D

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Melboy - I got into using that phrase when I lived in S. Yorks in the 1970's. A girl in our office in Barnsley who was from Meltham near Huddersfield introduced me to it. I don't think she had any military connections.

It seems to sum things up delightfully I find along with the work mardy!

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Sorry to hear everyone's woes. If I got into listing mine I think I'd top myself with the growing depression of the memories.

But just back from a weeks skiing in Andorra it can be pretty good sometimes when its all downhill. weeeeeeeeeeeesplat.

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Ok my turn.

To be read with a sense of humour, I think it's better that way.

Some may recall that of a block of 6 self contained flats I own 5. I continually kick myself for not paying the then high price to take it in 2003 when I then owned 4.

The owner of the 6th is a total aggressive, chip on shoulder, angry, short assed, threatening bully. The Police visit regularly to deal with him and how he has escaped the clink amazes me.

He fairly regularly takes too many of something and rings the Police, who bash his door in and off he goes to be patted and talked nicely to by nurses. These short weeks are the most peaceful the block experience. When he feels bad I've said he should take 7 or 8 aspirin and we will all feel better in the morning.

He always seems to worm his way into the lives of the other T's. They don't like or trust him but so often they seem to entertain him.

He's bedded a few female T's in the past. He's helped a couple of the HB T's enjoy my rents on cider. A good few stories but he's scared a few T's away and when some potentials view they lose interest as they learn he lives there.

You can imagine my interest in the S28 abatement order when it was suggested to another here.

Well recently, a little before xmas he was up to his sort of usual. Being skint and getting lonely he, in turn, entered 3 flats, sat and refused to leave. I guess he must have left eventually.

Next door to the flats were building a high wall between them and the flats. possibly to protect themselves from the antics at the flats ?? Mr Angry, being an out 'o' work brickie believed this was his job so threw a tantrum when another was contracted to do the wall. Screaming, shouting and throwing breeze blocks around the Police came again. They tell him he's a naughty boy and off to the dough nut shop.

The other T's are sick of all this and have had a meeting, I was informed but not wishing to be involved in perceivabley a vigilanty squad I stayed away. Remember this is 80 miles away from me anyway.

A while ago I was told that 1 T has been keeping a record, great. I have my own also. I suggested the style in which to create the record, and to keep out the emotion as far as possible. I have mentioned the S28 to the T's but pointed out that while they socialise with Mr Angry, and he can say this, a court may well just shrug off any S28 claim. I have no wish to waste my efforts.

So before xmas 2 T's from other properties serve notice, they're both off at the end of December. Different reasons, just life moving on. Both properties will need some work to re-let. No point in getting stuck in till their gone so they are lined up for January, 1 is 80 miles away in Wales, 'tother round the corner.

Early Jan I employ A's and advertise both properties myself,. Wales has a massive response, local a little. Both A's are still getting themselves going on this. The work started on Wales 1st as there were to be many viewings, 2 birds and all that. There is a choice of T's and the work moves on nicely.

A local viewing brings a very promising result, I'm not used to all this.

While waiting for applications and references of applicants for Wales I get a call from a Stock Broker, he and missus view and all looks groovy, so within a few days we agree a tenancy start date. This to be Friday 24th Jan, I wanted earlier as we were due at Manchester Airport for Andorra 3:30am on the Sunday.

The local let was agreed to start 15th Feb, that was actually signed up Mon 3rd Feb the day before they went off to Spain, monies paid up and all.

Anyway while driving to Wales Fri 24th Jan the future T calls, the G'tor, his boss, the Director of the company, can't make it to the house, can I visit their office 16 miles away. Reluctantly I agree, I want to get this sorted before flying off.

I stop at the flats to listen to the complaints from 1 T who is waiting for his HB to restart since losing his job, he's full of bull but because I screwed up lodging his deposit I need some caution. Another T late paying his rent telling me of more antics. They show me that Mr Angry has had 2 windows put through, with breeze blocks. I've a mixed feeling about this, it doesn't do much for the reputation of the flats but the git deserves this and more.

Mr Angry a couple of days previous jumped Mr HB to give him a good pounding but Mr HB got the better of him. The Police said as it was he said / he said so no action.

I warned them not to antagonise as in court for the S28 it can only be bad.

Off to the house to finish off the works. 4ish I drove to the future T's office for the sign up, still with a couple of hours work to return to before the 80 miles drive home. The g'tor had left for home, would I trust them to get the signature later? I spat my dummy out. Would I accept the 'unchecked' co-director? So I explained that the checked out director looked like good insurance, no he no tenancy. Very unhappy I agreed for us all to drive to the g'tors home, as an appeasement the T's agreed to finish cleaning the property themselves. After 3 1/2 hours and 90 extra miles I'm back at the property by close on 8pm, I'm gonna' be late home then. but at least the tenancy is signed up.

While driving to the g'tors house I get a call requesting a reference for a longer term T at the flats, she has proved to be a good 'un. Disappointed I leave a message for her and she calls back but some time later. she tells of her fear due to Mr Angry. She lives with Chris (I turned a blind eye to him moving in) and when Chris works nights she has a friend stay to feel easier. But apparently all the problems aren't down to Mr Angry, the 2 T's I mentioned earlier have been calling at Mr Angry to come outside to get things sorted, and then the sound of broken glass as the windows go through, a new slant.

If only this lady T had called before I signed up the Stock Broker, as they (remeber she lives with Chris) are looking to move they could have taken the house. that's irrelevant now.

So this week I'm working local. I'll forgive you if you haven't kept up but these T's signed on Monday are in Spain and I've till the 15th to ready their flat. I get a call to give a reference for another T at the Welsh flats. I oblige, He's been there for some time but an awkward little oojah. Smokes like a chimney, so much that I won't enter his flat to do whatever he needs this time until it's clear of the brown fog. As far as the reference is concerned he would look ok, until they ask if the property is kept properly. Well since I anticipate a full refurb, decoration and carpets at least, I say so.

So of 5 flats.

Flat 1 on his way soonish, much work to look forward to.

Flat 2 £238 arrears since his late partial rent payment after December.

Flat 3 2nd time late with rent so close on £500 arrears, has dog w/o permission and his g'tor now lives with him or did the last I knew.

Flat 4 nearly £2,000 arrears, I've been hoping for a back dated HB claim (but not holding my breath), been trying to resolve the screwed up deposit that has already taken more effort than it's worth. At least now if the ambulance chasers go for the 4x the counter claim will offset it. Time to progress his S21 maybe, but with 2 other flats coming empty I might just end up paying more council tax, mmmmm.

Flat 6 on her way, shame.

And the next prat down the local that says "it's alright for you" better duck sharpish.

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Jeeze did I write all that ?


I feel so much better now COR. :D At least you didn't have viral flu when all this palarvar was going on.

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Oh dear Cor that makes War and Peace readable.

I momentarily wonder if it is worth selling block of 5 at auction, some sucker will go for it - walk away and buy something else in a more prosperous environment?

Mr Angry has to go or he will ruin your lets forever. Seems he has p****d off so many of your tenants new ones may be afraid to move in - word gets around a locality quickly as I am sure you are aware.

Ah well - on to the next............

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The end Mortitia, I should be so lucky.

I have been suffering the cr*p of Mr Angry since approx 2005. He bought the flat on a BTL with his 1st wife, I'll tell you about his 2nd marriage a little later.

His 1st wife diviorced him and kept the family home, He then moved into the flat and ran up debts that attracted ccj's and charges that exceed the flats value, so now there is no advantage for him to sell. How he still remains when you would expect the flat to be taken and auctioned is beyond me.

So he owns and can't be ousted, for some reason. Seeing this I put the 5 flats on the market, it remained so for 3 years. The only offers didn't cover the total mortgages as seeing the crash I remortgaged all in early 2008 to create a cushion, and the area has suffered during the crash. Valued at £80k a unit in 2008 the best offer was £50k a unit. All that happened was that each time there was interest I would arrange what viewings I could, drive 160 miles, and 'maybe' get an offer that would leave me subsidising the sale.

Effectively I'm trapped, hey ho. But, due to low interest rates they do bring a profit. Recent events may change this though.

Within a space of 18 months he took up with his cousin, engaged with party, married her with party, she left for another and now divorced no party. All this and I wouldn't touch her with your barge pole. Reminded of his defficiences but blaming the world the back lash was to be expected.

With some improvements the block could be a lovely little set up. Basic, cheap but modern and comfortable. I won't invest more than I need to though.

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A small update, following on from my extensive belly aching.

Having just spoken to the HB regarding Mr HB in flat 4. He told me he had an interview with them on Wednesday, and what do you know he wasn't fibbing. They have granted his claim, 'back dated' to October 21st last year. Wow, how the hell, ah well that's an unexpected £1,205 into my account next Friday. Now this bloody deposit.

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This saga is better than than "War and Peace". :D

Now as I was the OP of this topic and feeling a lot better now ( thank you for asking ) everything was put into perspective for me yesterday when we went to a funeral of a good friend who, last Summer had retired aged just 60 and was busy playing golf and relaxing until being diagnosed with a severe untreateable leukemia. He survived for 4 months.

Our woes and troubles are but a trifle aren't they.

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They are Mel.

Part of the reason I don't put all my effort into business, we don't know what tomorrow won't bring us.

I'm glad your feeling better, I will be with a Guiness in my hand later.

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Just about to bite into my lunch time cheese and pickle sandwich when Son phones me to tell me shed felt roof is missing from one of my properties. ( He had been doing a gas safety check 3 doors down).

Oh! Joy! Such Fun!

Big storm coming in today and tonight so drop everything and armed with a handy new roll of felt and nails and hammer and ladder dash off and repair shed roof.

Thanks goodness for the "Golden Rule" of keep your rented properties as close to you as possible.

All done now..........cheese and pickle sandwich has gone a bit stale ! :D

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I've got a shed that needs re-felting. Apparantly once you are over 65, in my area the local authority have got a scheme where you only pay a small nominal fee & they arrange for the work to be done.

Can't wait until I'm 65+ :)

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