Sunday, November 18, 2007

Back to Back Part Deux

So back to what I had started to say about back to backs and everything involved in these kind of things. September is by far the busiest month for apartment buildings and ours was no exception. We had over twenty back to backs. Now, when a new tenant signs their lease and any accompanying paperwork at the Rental Office, their Rental Agent is supposed to advise them if their unit is going to be a back to back unit. They are then supposed to place an additional stamp on their lease with this disclosure which states that the new tenant is fully aware of this fact. The tenant by signing this addendum to their lease, are then essentially agreeing to accept their new unit as potentially incomplete, but that this state will be temporary and will be corrected by the property owner in a timely manner.

Now up until the mess that ended up being caused in September, we went on faith that the Rental Agents were in fact doing their job correctly and that any and all of these types of situations were being handled properly. Can you imagine how you would feel if you showed up for your brand spanking new apartment only to find that everything promised to you had not been fulfilled? Understandably, you would be furious. This is what ended up happening to us in September to almost half of our units. Not that it matters much now because he no longer works for the company, but one of the Agents was neglecting to do this very critical part of the rental process. Not only did he fail to stamp their leases with this addendum, but he didn’t even bother to verbally advise them of this potential situation.

Now, very often, a potential back to back doesn’t always turn out that way. An old tenant can move out days or sometimes weeks before the last day of the month allowing us the opportunity to get in there to get everything completed early. There are also instances when a new tenant does not need the unit on the first of the month which also allows us time to complete everything prior to the new tenant moving in. These situations tend to be exceptions rather rules of course.

Now on the first of September our first set of tenants for the day arrived almost an hour early. They had been scheduled to move into their unit at 8am which is the earliest that we start any move ins anyway but phoned me just after 7am to see if they could start early. I was barely up yet as I had spent most of the night working and had barely had a chance to lie down more than two and a half hours at this point. Now the unit that they were moving into had not been handed over to us until 6pm the following evening which was about five hours later than technically the unit should have been be handed to us.

This unit also required a lot of work as the previous tenants had painted all of their walls different, darker, colors than what is considered standard with this company. Tenants are normally required to return the walls to the colors they had received them in or pay an additional amount to get them painted back to apartment beige! These tenants paid the $300 penalty but this didn’t help us any when the painters needed to put almost three coats of paint on each wall. This ended up really impacting us time wise when it came to us getting this unit into move in condition. Combined with not getting their keys until dinner time, we just weren’t going to get this unit ready for the new tenants no matter what we did. We simply did not have the time available to us.

Now of course, the two girls moving into this unit had not been advised of the fact that they were renting a back to back unit so they were obviously freaking out when they saw that the work had not been completed. They fully expected to be walking into a pristine unit. Both of them were all of nineteen years old at the most and both had brought both sets of parents with them as well. Their fathers were positively the worst. They started yelling and screaming and carrying on without pause. And this my first move in of the weekend! As this was our first September move in with this company, I went and got one of the other Building Managers. I grabbed Jack as he had pretty much given us most of our company training as well as pretty much mentoring us since the start. He for the most part had been above awesome in my books!!!

He explained the situation to them and discovered during this time, that the tenants had not been advised that their unit was a back to back, etc. He asked them what we needed to do today to make them happy and we proceeded to do our best to accommodate any and all of their wishes and believe me these little princesses had many. The icing on the cake just happened to be the fact that the parents were extremely great friends with the owner of the company that I work for and of course, they promised that he would be hearing about what had happened this weekend, etc, etc. Most excellent, n’est pas?

We asked him to refrain from saying anything to the owner until the end of the weekend. If we could complete all of their requests before the start of the work week would they be satisfied enough to let everything go? Absolutely, no problem. We all worked like mad to get everything peachy keen for these two while moving in the other twenty units without much more mishap. Now right from the start, one of the two girls rubbed me the wrong way. She was demanding and condescending and no where near as nice as her room mate. I was soon to learn also, that she had quite the creative imagination and was spiteful enough not to consider the possible ramifications of her actions.


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