If you follow a fool, you get a fool's reward

By
Managing Real Estate Broker with Winchester Real Estate Sales, Cornerstone Business Group Inc 0225086119
http://actvra.in/rfL

If you follow a fool, you get a fools reward.  That's life according to Mike.  It's also my assessment of the dealings with some of my rental clients last year.  In a particular property, I had 5 tenants from a company that was installing a new power lines through our area.

In the beginning, they were awesome tenants.  The first 5 were very responsible, paid their rent on time and always kept me up to date in the event the house had any issues.  It was great.  Then, the main contact had a family emergency and had to go home to Michigan.

He was replaced by a fellow from Florida.  If you're familiar with the Winchester/Frederick County area you know it's more like Michigan than Florida.  We have all four seasons and it can get pretty cold and snowy in the  Fall and Winter seasons.

When the replacement took over the role of the former leader, things started to decline.  The rent was late, he complained all the time and over the holidays he let the heating fuel run out and the pipes broke.  That was followed by January rent that didn't come. 

When I called to request it, he told me that they wouldn't pay the rent until I had the heating system serviced.  We had already had the heating system serviced so I knew it was working fine.  He was cold, and he figured it must be our heating system. It couldn't possibly be the 8 degree temperature outside and fact that he only put 30 gallons of oil in the fuel tank (1500 gallon tank) at a time.  I explained to him that he could not live there free to which he replied, "OK then, kick us out!" 

A few days later he received his 5 day notice to move, and that was followed by a summons to court.  He decided to represent himself.  My attorney told me over and over, "This guy thinks he's an attorney." It has been said that a man who represents himself has a fool for a client. 

In court, he told the judge he didn't owe the rent because the house was a horrible place to live, and court date was set.  In the interim, he had a home inspector go through the house, and with his help, he pointed out everything that needed to be repaired. 

I could have put the list on a 3X5 index card.  Ironically, they caused most of the problems.  Well, I'm not foolish enough to represent myself in court at this level, so my attorney took him and his crew of mindless followers apart, and of course, we won.  They were required to pay all back rent, court costs and interest for the time in question and move.

Before you follow someone down a path, make sure he knows where the path will lead.  If not, you may both fall in the ditch, or even worse, be lost.  "Nature teaches beasts to know their friends."  William Shakespeare, (Coriolanus, Act II, Scene I).

 

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Topic:
ActiveRain Community
Location:
Virginia
Groups:
Active Rain Newbies
BananaTude
The One That Got Away
WeBlog Anything (almost)!
"Whacked"!!!
Tags:
mike cooper
real estate winchester va
rentals

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Rainmaker
720,237
Mike Cooper
Your Winchester, VA Real Estate Pro
Winchester Real Estate Sales, Cornerstone Business Group Inc

Thank you, Jill.  I have sparred with the best of them.  While studying karate, I learned that the best to deal with an adversary is to strike quickly and neutalize him before he has a chance to touch you.  These guys didn't have a chance.  8-)  Have a great evening.

January 14, 2012 09:41 PM
Rainer
234,162
Doug Bullwinkel
NMLS #281609
Vitek Mortgage Group

Not only do you have to know your friends, you have to pick your friends well so they don't drag you down the wrong path.  Strike quickly is good advice when someone is coming after you.  I always enjoy your posts.

January 15, 2012 12:57 AM
Rainmaker
720,237
Mike Cooper
Your Winchester, VA Real Estate Pro
Winchester Real Estate Sales, Cornerstone Business Group Inc

Absolutely, Doug.  Have a great Sunday!

January 15, 2012 08:30 AM
Rainer
204,514
Mark Delgado
Benicia and Vallejo, Property Management, rental h
houses for rent, Solano County & Glen Cove

Ironic how a good situation can turn so easily. But, handling things correctly, as you did, will always help you to prevail in the end. 

January 15, 2012 05:22 PM
Rainmaker
720,237
Mike Cooper
Your Winchester, VA Real Estate Pro
Winchester Real Estate Sales, Cornerstone Business Group Inc

Mark, that's kind of how I felt with this one.  I kept thinking this guy is pulling my leg.  Nope.  He was a moron.  8-)

January 15, 2012 06:47 PM
Anonymous
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Rainmaker
720,237

Mike Cooper

Your Winchester, VA Real Estate Pro
Winchester has a place for you! Call me.
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