Friday, May 29, 2009

The Post Title Today Was thisclose

To reading “Don’t Count Your Chickens” (at least not until you have physically signed on the dotted line because giving up thousands of dollars, liking a person and dreaming of the soothing sounds of a dishwasher do not necessarily account for anything real in this world). Ah yes, the joys of working with a Broker. Too bad I can not fire her, after all this is my Wicked Stepmother (WSM) we are talking about here.

Luckily everything is fine now but last night opened my eyes, yet again, to the beautiful thing called choices.

Matt got home from work at a little after seven and announced that WSM was not his favorite person right now. Considering we just spent a couple hours with her last weekend and gave her a fairly hefty sum of money to secure our new dishwasher it took under three seconds for the rock to appear in my gut as I asked him why.

Turns out someone forgot to mention the fact that our new landlords want us to pay them on the twenty seventh of every month so the money will clear their account by the first. Say what? I have been renting (save for the house for three years) for about seventeen years of my life now. Rent is due on the first. I pay rent on the first. That is the cost of doing business as a landlord, yeah, you are going to lose three days. Sorry but I am not paying rent early.

That is just not how it works.

Also apparently, someone decided that we were going to be writing a check for our first month's rent this Saturday when we sign the lease. Over a month in advance? Oh and that check would be post dated for June 19. Again. I simply can not get behind this, what with upwards of two decades experience contradicting it. Move in date is the first. I pay you the first month’s rent on the first. A post dated check means nothing. You could run right out and cash it tomorrow. It has happened to me before and it will not happen again.

That is just not how it works.

At one point during their conversation WSM asked Matt if we even wanted the place or not. She put on her high pressure Salesperson hat. In turn, Matt put on his “I’m walking right out of this Deaslership and nothing you can say will stop me” hat and told her we needed to discuss it before he could make a decision. He would call her back that evening.

So discuss it we did. At length. I emphatically explained that although I really loved the place the only way I was moving in there was if we paid rent on the first, not a day before, and this post dated, pay this weekend for a July first move in date, check business went away. I was willing to concede to paying a week in advance, especially since they were going to let us move in on the Sunday, a few days early, without any additional monies up front. Matt completely agreed and dialed the phone.

I do not fuck around. Especially when it comes to close to $3000 of our hard earned money and a year long commitment (which turned into fourteen months because their standard lease is September to September and we agreed to go with it). Matt told WSM that we were not comfortable with this arrangement and it would be fine to please just return our deposit ASAP since we would now need to pay rent here in two days and that we would be back out on the hunt for a new place again.

As I visualized all my dreams of soft hands and hours of gained time literally whirlpool down the drain, it occurred to me that I needed to stop myself mid thought and refocus. So I looked at him and in my most gentle, soothing voice asked “are we idiots?” In his most charming head bob he nodded and asked if we could call her back in a minute.

He hung up the phone and we decided that if they would be willing to do things as every other landlord we have ever dealt with in the past that we would still be happy to move in there. About ten more phone calls went back and forth between Matt and WSM ironing out what we felt comfortable with.

We figured they would not be willing to bend, that this is how they did it and that was that. It was a bummer but we both let go of the place right then and there.

And then something surprising happened. They agreed.

We gave up the possibility of moving before a year from September and would concede to giving them a certified check for the first month’s rent on June 22 (six days before we move in). They allowed for payment of rent on the first and no talk of post dated checks.

As soon as we let go of holding onto the new place, as soon as we conceded to the fact that perhaps it was not ours, maybe it was not fate that led us there after all, we were shown that it was in fact meant to be.

There is always going to be some weirdness every time any change is made in life, people have an inherent ability to freak out when the normal is disrupted, but I was proud of both of us that we were able to maintain a level of calm and reign in any irrational thinking to put the entire situation into the correct perspective before making a real choice. Now I can breathe and rest easy for the next month knowing that we are all people willing to negotiate, bend and be flexible which definitely comes in handy when dealing with anyone, most especially a new landlord.

So what do you think? Cascade liquid or Electrasol tabs?


Suldog said...

Neither. I use Electrasol Powder!

Nice job keeping your cools.

Karen said...

Cascade liquid gel! So glad it worked out for you!

Joan said...

Cascade! Yay!!!

pastrywitch said...

whatever is on sale! and good for you.

Theresa said...

I'm with Suldog...Electrosol Powder. Kudos for hanging in there with the negotiations. Moving is difficult enough without have to dicker around. Good luck with the rest of the move.

Bridgete said...

Good work on the negotiation front.

Get the Cascade ActionPacs. They're like the Electrasol Tabs...but better. =)

whimsicalpam said...

I'm a Cascade liquid gel kinda gal...
Well done! and very well said:)
I think that most people now are afraid of any kind of confrontation, even when it's a mediated and level headed one. Unfortunately, that mindset is what causes "those in power" to come up with their own set of rules. A confidant and firm stance wins everytime!

Chris Stone said...

enjoy your dishwasher!

ginger said...

holy crap! that post dated check stuff is definitely not cool so i'm so glad it worked out! they were probably just testing your metal to see what they could get away with in the future. people treat you how you teach them to, after all.

my mom likes the cascade tablet thingies that bridgete also recommended. i must admit that they do kick ass. i bought some palmolive, eco-friendly stuff last time...don't fall for that one, it sucks.

Jenn Flynn-Shon said...

The suggestions are awesome, thanks for all the input friends :) After careful consideration I still don't know which, powder or gel. Good info on the Palmolive eco one though Ginger, thanks for letting me save some dough!

Rosebud Collection said...

I was reading this and thinking..what the heck kind of landlord am I? Glad they changed their way, I was concerned about us being an easy mark..since we always work with the tenants, true, sometimes too much and get taken..but I can sleep at night.
Glad this worked out for you both..
will be nice with a dishwasher..