Attack of the Killer Landlords

Well, I may have gotten myself into a bit of a pickle.  When the hubs and I lived in this apartment two years ago we had painted the bedroom, and before we moved out offered to paint it back.  But our landlords (we’ll refer to them as Bonnie and Clyde) told us no need, they liked the color and we should leave it.

Before we moved back we stopped at Home Depot and bought all of the supplies to paint the bedroom grey, like our room in Maryland had been.  Then as the hubs is moving boxes into the apartment Clyde tells him the rules have changed, and just an FYI: no painting. 

The hubs didn’t feel it was the time to ask him to be flexible on that one, since he was paying workers by the hour and carrying heavy boxes himself.

Fast forward to yesterday.  I decided I would ask Bonnie and Clyde to reconsider their position on painting and surprise the hubs and paint our bedroom.  As I’m taking Brady on our morning walk I run into Clyde who is outside and ask if he and Bonnie would reconsider letting us paint.  He cuts me off and just says, “NO.”  So I say, “Well I just really wish you would have told us before we moved, so we didn’t have to waste money buying all the paint supplies.  Additionally, I also wish that you hadn’t painted the walls GLOSSY.  As two artists it really just rubs us the wrong way.  Would you consider letting us paint it matte white?”


So I said, “Alright, thanks” and Brady and I went on our walk.

Forty five minutes later Brady and I are back and Bonnie is on the front porch sweeping.  I’m all smiles, “Good morning Bonnie.”

She says, “Joan, Clyde said you asked about painting.”  Finally, someone with sense.  They’ve talked and maybe decided we could paint?  Not so much.  She goes on to say, “Past tenants have gotten paint on the carpet and it’s really hard to paint over after you leave…” So I say, “I understand, I just wish you would have told us before we moved so we wouldn’t have wasted money on the supplies.”

“Well, I told Jonathan this when we did the walk through, before he signed the lease.”

“Um, we never had a walk through.  We signed the lease sight unseen and you told him as he was moving boxes into the apartment.”

“Oh, well whatever.”

So then she goes on to tell me if I want to break the lease that they will let me do that.  Over painting?  Who would break a lease because you can’t paint??  I JUST WISH I KNEW IN ADVANCE SO I DIDN’T WASTE THE MONEY.

I say, “Okay, well thank you.”  And go into my apartment.

Not ten seconds later Bonnie knocks on my door.  I answer and she blurts out, “You know Joan I think we are really good landlords.  We never even go into your apartment.”

That makes you a good landlord?

I cut her off and say, “Actually Bonnie, someone was in my apartment last week.”

She raises her voice and says, “THAT IS A LIE!”

“Okay, well I know for a fact I left something in front of the door at the bottom of the stairs, and when I got home it was at the top of the stairs and on the counter.  Considering Jon isn’t in the country and Brady doesn’t have opposable thumbs…”

Next thing I know she’s screaming, “CLYDE, JOAN SAYS YOU WENT IN HER APARTMENT!”  

Clyde comes over and just loses it.  He goes off about how I’m being a brat because I’m not getting my way, I’m lying about how someone came into my apartment and I can break the lease and move out.

So I say, “I’m sorry if you didn’t come into my apartment, but then we had an intruder.  I honestly did not mean to make a simple question of asking to paint turn into this HUGE ordeal.  I’ve said sorry multiple times, and you keep yelling at me.  I do not know how this simple question turned into this huge blow up.  Additionally, I dropped it the first time you said no.  You guys are the ones that brought it up and second AND a third time.”

Finally he stops yelling and I ask Bonnie if we can talk alone.  She closes the door and I just start bawling.  Am I supposed to feel awkward every time I go into my apartment?  I tell her the way Clyde talked to me is unacceptable and no one ever talks to me like that.

She says, “Joan, he wasn’t yelling.  That’s just how he talks.  Doesn’t Jonathan talk to you like that?”

I looked her straight in the eye and said, “He absolutely does not.  And if he ever dared to he’d be packing his bags.”

I think that threw her off a bit, because we constantly hear yelling coming from their apartment.  But I honestly can not think of a time where my husband raised his voice at me.  I guess we call that good coping skills.

We pretty much left it at that.  I left a couple of hours later for Maryland.  I was planning on going the next day for the long weekend, but decided it would be better if I just got out of there.  I hope they’re scared that I disappeared and won’t resurface for a good week and a half.

At least I got out of alternate street parking for one extra day.


  1. I loved reading your Landlord posts. They’re hilarious (and tragic). I’m an apartment manager and mom of 3 boys. How’s the landlord situation now?

    • It got so bad that we ended up breaking our lease and moving out of that apartment. We’re now in a much nicer (but smaller) apartment, and have since then had a baby. In hindsight, I regret never having reported him to the city. Heat in the dead of winter is a necessity!

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