It’s stressful enough when you have to move. There is all the anxiety of packing up things, giving things away, gathering boxes and packing paper, etc. There is also the issue of making sure your credit score is up to par, your job and pay stubs are on point, the location is good (like close to public transportation in case your car breaks down). Then there is the debate over if you should use movers or a group of people that you hope are dependable.
But now added to that stress is reading through rental ads and trying to determine from the pictures if:
- the place is suited for you,
- if the place will align to your move in date,
- the cost associated with moving into the place,
- if there is adequate storage,
- can you barbeque, and throw small parties,
- if you can bring your pets (well, not a pet lover here, but I understand that many people are), etc. So, to have to determine if someone is being truthful in their ad is the last thing that you have on your mind when searching for that perfect place.
But my fellow renters, do not despair, because of my many rental situations (that never includes me not paying my rent on time or being a good tenant), I have had the opportunity to see what it is like to not only deal with people who wear masks on a daily basis (by saying one thing and doing another), now that same behavior has spilled over into the rental market.
I guess I should not be surprised, considering that people lie and distort the truth daily, but come on, do we have to use marketing ploys and lie in rental ads just to get potential renters?
I mean do you not think it’s a waste of time to schedule an appointment with a potential renter when you know you have only given half the truth in your listing?
For example, I saw this perfectly cute apartment in Forest Park, (God I want nothing more than to escape the residents of Oak Park) and I grew very excited. Crunched the numbers, checked the move in date, the deposit (not worried about the money or credit score). Basically worked it all out in how I could move into this place. However what did not sit right with me was the fact that the square footage was not in the ad. Well, sure enough after rushing to meet the owner (yes the owner who was renting the place), I discovered the place was not more than 550 feet! Tell me, why the hell was that information not disclosed in the ad? Me being inexperienced in all of this noticed it was not listed, but did not think it was a case in which I had to inquire. That’s what I get for “ASS”uming!
My advice to you, if it’s not there, listed in the ad, “ask”! Don’t waste your time and the property owner’s time. Especially since most times you are on your best behavior (probably dressed nicely too, like me), only to walk away disappointed.
My previous appointment turned out in disappointment as well. Saw this great ad for an apartment on the 2nd floor. The place was huge with all of the storage, bedroom space, in-house laundry units, parking, private backyard, everything! But, and this was a huge but for me, the owner failed to mention in the ad that he is living on the first floor and renting out the second floor. So that means that in this nice two flat building, I would be living upstairs from my landlord? Not! That crap is like living with your parent, but worse! Why the heck would I want that? What if we get into a disagreement? What if he does not agree with my living arrangements, is he going to complain? What if our personalities don’t mesh, will he put me out? Would it have been so wrong to simply mention in the ad, “Landlord living on the first floor, is renting out a second-floor apartment?” At least give me the option to make a sound decision before I show up for the appointment to check out the place. I mean damn, is that too much to ask for? Back to that whole, treat others how you want to be treated. You can trust and believe that if that was me, I would have disclosed that right away. Why make a person wait and find out by surprise? That is some sneaking s&@t, that’s why. They are hoping that you show up and you are so impressed that you will begin the application process. Or maybe they believe their own hype, and they don’t think this is anything to disclose, but I think that is all B.S.
Oh, I came across another Zillow ad listing a two flat. It was for a second-floor apartment as well. This time, I knew better than to assume the owner was not living on the first floor (since it was a two flat). So before I even inquired about the apartment, I carefully conducted internet searches, and found out from pictures (taken only a few months ago) that the owner is living there (he did not say so in the ad, but the pictures of him sitting outside of the property spoke volumes). As a result, I did not fall for the Okie-Doke. I kept it moving.
Maybe it’s just me, seeking perfection again in another situation. I’m told that I am too analytical, but I cannot help but call B.S. when I see it. Am I sweating the small stuff, or am I too analytical? What do you think?