True Tenant Tales, Volume One

Working with tenants can be an amazing experience. (Owners and contractors are equally astounding, but those are subjects for another day.) It seems I get my most memorable anecdotes over the phone. Here are a few of the ones I've culled from my blog and experience and put together for your reading amazement.

First was a late-night phone call I took:




"Hi, my smoke alarm keeps going off."


"Is there a fire?"


"No. It does this every time I open the oven."


"Well have you cleaned the oven?"


"I've opened the windows and door but it won't stop."


"Why don't you wave the smoke away with a magazine?"


"Okay, I've got the fan in the kitchen now. What did you say about the oven?"


"Have you cleaned it? There's a product you can buy called EZ-Off. It's, well, pretty easy to use."


"Really? Okay, I guess I'll try that."


"I think it may help."

"Thanks. Have a good night."

"Good night."

You'll notice I didn't suggest disconnecting the battery.


The next was a call in the late morning.

"Landlord for Hire."

"Terence, I have a really bad problem."

"What's wrong?"

"There's a bee between the door and the storm door, and I can't get out."

"Well, I wouldn't swat it. It's probably as scared as you are."

"Okay. Can you come over and open the door for me?"

"Well, I'm a half-hour drive from there. Is there someone closer you could call?"

"Not really."

"How about this: open the inside door and the storm door very quickly, and then close the inside door. You'll bring the bee out with you and it will fly away. You'll be doing it a favor."

"What if it gets inside?"

"Be quick and it won't ? I have faith in you. Call me if you're still stuck after you try it."

I didn't get a call back.


Springtime brought this little gem:

"Terence, it's really hot in here? Why is the heat still on?"

"Have you turned it from "Heat" to "Cold?"

"Um, no . . . "


The last I have right now was a simple voice mail, of chilling consequences:

"Mr. Terence, I wanted to call to let you know there's a problem with the drain in the basement. Thank you."

"A problem" was three feet of water and human waste in the basement. The tenant was late on her rent and, according to the plumber, must have endured the stench for a week or more before she screwed up the courage to call me. That was a rental I owned myself, and that tenant taught me a lot of the lessons I use to guide my property management philosophy, including not selecting tenants out of fear, not accepting excuses for late rent, and always assuming that your tenants are better at understatement than you are!

© 2005 Terence P Ward, all rights reserved. Terence P Ward is the President of Landlord for Hire, a residential property management service of Green and Clean Corporation, based in the Mid-Hudson Valley of New York State. You may find contact information for him on either of his company's web pages.

The Lease And Purchase Option

If you have an investment property, should you rent it or sell it? The answer... Read More

Interim Rent: Equipment Leasing?s Trap Door

Many lessees enter into lease transactions that they believe are competitive based on faulty rate... Read More

With a Lease, The Devil Is In The Details

In the last article we looked at a few of the things you should consider... Read More

The Leverage of the Lease

In today's rapidly changing business environment it makes sense to consider all the options before... Read More

Lease or Buy? That is Always the Question with Car Financing

Leasing is a perfectly viable and legitimate way to finance a new car. Although leasing... Read More

Pricing Your Apartments

How do you fix a price point for an apartment? Take a guess? Figure it... Read More

Leases And Tenants - The Spooky Tenant

You, Mr. Landlord are pleased to find qualified tenants for your rental house. The man... Read More

So You Want to be a Landlord?

The residual income from owning rental properties may bring more money into your life than... Read More

Basic Things You Should Know About A Lease Purchase Contract

What exactly is a contract?By definition, a contract is an agreement between two or more... Read More

Insiders Guide to Snaring the Best Lease Deal

Every year, thousands of business owners and financial managers are faced with the task of... Read More

What to Consider Before Leasing a Car

Some people choose to lease a car rather than buying one outright. Here are some... Read More

What Happens When the Anchor Tenant Moves and You Are On a Ten-year Lease?

Recently there was an article in the Houston Business Journal of the anchor store in... Read More

True Tenant Tales, Volume One

Working with tenants can be an amazing experience. (Owners and contractors are equally astounding, but... Read More

Dodging Leasings Grim Reaper: Navigating a Payment Default

In her third Harry Potter novel, ?The Prisoner of Azkaban?, J.K. Rowling introduces a silent... Read More

Ten Ways Start-ups Use Venture Leases And Loans To Generate Millions

The rise of venture leasing and lending has created an opportunity for sophisticated entrepreneurs to... Read More

Venture Leasing - A Smarter Way To Build Enterprise Value

In 2003, venture capitalists and investors dispensed over $18 billion to promising young U.S. companies,... Read More

Ten Equipment Leasing Tips - Save a Bundle on Your Next Lease

According to the Equipment Leasing Association ("ELA"), U.S. businesses lease every thing from laptop computers... Read More

Terms to Know Before Leasing A Vehicle - Leasing Jargon Simplified

So, you've decided that you want to lease that next vehicle. Can't really blame you.... Read More

Landlord Tips And Tricks

Every real estate investor dealing in rental homes has done his own clean-up and fix-up,... Read More

Using Equipment Leasing as a Competitive Weapon

Most great generals know how to design winning battle plans. They also know how to... Read More

Venture Leasing: Startup Financing On the Rise

According to Pricewaterhouse Coopers, investment by institutional venture capitalists in startups grew from less than... Read More

Lease Contracts - The Meaning of Joint and Several

When you see the phrase "joint and several" in a legal document or contract it... Read More

Increase Your Business Growth and Cash Flow Through Equipment Leasing

"If it can be manufactured, it can be leased." For the past decade or so,... Read More

How Venture Leasing Added Millions To A Startups Equity Value

Craig Berman beamed noticeably after completing his board presentation. Berman, CEO of a startup that... Read More

Explore An Effective Revolutionary Approach To Traditional Business Financing

For business owners who need working capital now there is a revolutionary, tax-deductible cash flow... Read More

Warning - This Lease Might Explode Any Minute

Mike Caringi, owner of a small New Jersey business that sells pumps, found himself facing... Read More

Getting Your Venture Lease Approved

Each year venture capitalists fund more than 2,500 start-up companies in the U.S. Many of... Read More

Equipment Leasing Blunders That Can Cost Your Firm a Mint

Rod McHenry, the financial vice president of a document imaging company, thought he had great... Read More

Ten Ways to Save a Bundle on Your Next Lease

According to the Equipment Leasing Association ("ELA"), U.S. businesses lease every thing from laptop computers... Read More

Smart Car Leasing for Beginners

Car leasing is extremely popular because it provides an attractive method of driving an automobile... Read More

How To Choose An Equipment Leasing Company

Leasing has become a preferred form of equipment financing, accounting for more than 30% of... Read More