We arrived at our student house to find we didn’t have a working toilet
The landlord instead splashed out £700 on desks
We’ve all had, or at least heard of, a renting horror story. Take the tale of the Bristol landlord who sent a dehumidifier to a tenant when her ceiling collapsed. Or the story of the Lincoln students who arrived at their house to find rats in the kitchen. Or the time a Leeds-based landlord gifted tenants fifty quid each, just for being lovely.
Actually, wait. That last one was a nice story. Maybe some landlords are actually decent human beings? Mine certainly isn’t.
Our landlord spent over £700 on boutique desks for our five-person house but didn’t even give us a working toilet.
But wait! There’s more.
When we arrived, we didn’t have any contact details for our landlord. After much research, we found her mobile number… and her appearance on a Headingley-located episode of Homes Under the Hammer. Probably ensnared by the trapping of daytime TV fame, she didn’t respond to any calls. Regardless of our trepidation, we drew our third-year socks up, found all five keys left securely under a tin of paint on the street and unlocked the door.
Blinking twice at the grey and bronze theme to check we hadn’t stumbled into a gastropub, we navigated the pristine carpets and made our way to the kitchen.
Our delight only increased when we found out that the dishwasher, washing machine and drier were all short circuiting, while brown water leaked from the pipes. Instead of responding to our questions, the landlord moved the dishwasher into the middle of the room. Presumably it was meant to be a shabby-chic kitchen island.
It was only until our house-trip to IKEA that we discovered the true price of what we’d seen.
The arty desks in our rooms cost well over £100 each while the lampshades were over £70. Who were we to complain about running water when we had the luxury of artisan Swedish desks?
Our relationship with our landlord was further warmed when she told us that we were “the type of people to wash dishes by hand” (what that means, I still don’t know).
Expecting a hefty bill coming our way after every email, we discovered our landlord is a young property developer, notorious in the Leeds area for sapping the pockets of unsuspecting students, presumably to fund her BAFTA trophy room or perhaps her penchant for crushed velvet.
The threat of an additional bill for Blu-tacking the walls (something we’d been repeatedly warned against) was the cherry on the cake. If she hasn’t got an award for interior design, there must be one surely coming for student landlord of the year.
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