A cautionary tale of flatmate woe

January 14, 2011
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You can’t help but feel sorry for the Queenstown bloke who came home from holiday last week to find his new flatmate had trashed his house.

The roomie from hell moved in before Chrismas and the landlord/homeowner buggered off on Christmas day for a couple of weeks.

He came home to a damage, dirt and disgruntled neighbours.

The flatmate has since been evicted. Of course.

It’s hard to find the perfect person when it comes to the renting game. We used to own a rental property and know from painful experience that even if you check references, there’s no guarantee that the person you end up with won’t:

  • remove the pantry doors to use for firewood
  • somehow get bootprints on the bedroom ceiling
  • lock his dog inside in one room long enough for it to get so stressed and/or bored it chewed its way through the floor
  • leave a pile of rubbish behind the garage so high that you’ve filled three tandem trailers with crap before you come across the large motorcycle frame buried in said rubbish
  • hide behind the door of a bedroom to avoid answering the door when you call in to pick up the now two-weeks-late rent but forget that behind the door actually means standing right in front of a window at the very front of the house (the tenant looked rather startled when I knocked on the window and waved)

However, I was fairly lucky with the flatmates I ended up with during my own days as a renter. Sure, I had one who used to set fire to the toilet on occasions and another who was sprung trying on my makeup (the red lipstick really wan’t his shade) but apart from those minor hiccups it was all good.

Oh, there was one who was did cause me a certain level of annoyance but the timely death of a friend’s pet mouse allowed me to seek some revenge (did you know that if you are very, very careful you can restitch the seam on a pillow so neatly that no one would ever know you’d been in there. And that dead mice actually take a little while before they start to smell).

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