Bad tenants aren’t worth it

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In Bonnie James’ March 13 editorial “Lonely, little houses” she asks why houses sit empty. The answer is easy for me. I own a building that we were renting out as apartments – it was a nightmare. Though we had some amazing tenants, we also had some that were the absolute worst. They left damages that cost more than their total rent paid, didn’t pay, and made every excuse for their delays. Many left without paying their bills. We included hydro with the rent and had one tenant that would leave the heat on in the winter with the window open just above it to air out their apartment of marijuana. Our hydro bill was so high once that hydro asked me to check if the tenant was growing.

If you look at the regulations to get a tenant out of your apartment, it’s almost impossible, especially if they are low income or on welfare, because they have unlimited access to legal aid. We spent thousands of dollars fixing up our place and we said no dogs. Tenants can move in with no animals, and a simple letter from their doctor saying that they need an “emotional support” pet, and there’s nothing you can do. You can’t get first and last months rent, or a damage deposit. We chose to leave the building empty and squash our dreams of being landlords. The government isn’t on our side. I don’t need the extra stress and headache knowing it will cost me more money than I can charge in rent.

Crystal Dubeau,
Otter Lake