This Landlord, Much Like His Furniture, Remains Unmoved

, , , , , , | Friendly | May 11, 2020

I’ve spent almost my entire adult life living in rented rooms in shared houses or flats, as was the case when I started dating a great guy. Tensions arose at home due to me dating another man, resulting in me being given minimal warning to try and find another place. Then-boyfriend and I agreed to try to find a place together, and we ended up moving into a ground floor flat with the owner and his wife.

It turned out that the owner was a bit of a control freak. He set off my C-PTSD — coupled with other, unrelated life events — and I became very isolated and afraid of him. It turned out, while he wasn’t aware of everything going on, he absolutely approved of my being intimidated by him. 

However, one day he pushed me too far and my fear evaporated and I started standing up for myself. He reacted so badly to this that we argued over a blown light bulb and he ended up giving us our notice to move out after we’d been there about two years.

This story just about sums up what a pain in the behind he was.

On the day of our leaving, we had a friend — who also rents rooms — come over, ostensibly to help, but really to be there in case things went south, between his experience and his physical presence, since he was broader and beefier than the other three people combined. Our landlord protested him being present; I was ready to stick to my guns but my friend excused himself and stood by the open window to listen.

Our landlord started pulling the furniture out from where it had stood for the entire time we’d lived there and complaining about the dust behind them. He demanded to know why we hadn’t cleaned there. I pointed out that he had expressly forbidden us from moving the furniture.

“That isn’t true,” he claimed.

It absolutely was. I reminded him of the time my boyfriend went to him to ask if we could move the room around and he flatly refused.

“That never happened.”

I pointed out that there were even labels stuck to the furniture saying not to move them.

“That’s not true.”

Of course, it was true! I went over to a piece of furniture and pointed to the label, exclaiming that it was right there!

He rolled his eyes, muttered, “Typical,” and instead started pulling out the drawers to make sure they were all empty.

When he left the room, my friend poked his head through the window. He had been just about crying trying not to laugh loud enough to be heard, and he said that he thought I’d been exaggerating how much of a pain the landlord was. 

NOPE! Not at all. This story is one single perfect example of just how he was.

My boyfriend and I had decided how much of our deposit we’d be willing to say goodbye to, just to be rid of him; we said he should take the last couple of week’s rent out of it. We got a little more than our minimum back and off we went.

In the years since, we’ve gotten married, we’ve stayed close friends with the friend who was there, and my mental health has enormously improved.

I just pity his wife, who was as lovely as our landlord was petty and controlling.

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