Joe

City: 
Turlock
Residence Type: 
Single unit
Landlord Type: 
Private Landlord -- No Rent Control

I'm not sure what to put here. We moved into our new home with good intentions. We have always been good Tenants. Every home we have lived in, we have made better than we left it. As a Contractor, i have always made repairs, improvements, and upgrades to the home we have stayed, often at our own expense. What can i say, our Landlords have loves us. But with current Housing market, many have fallen to foreclosure and other problems. Why we have never bought a home i don't know. We spent 6 years in our last 2 bedroom home, but realized we needed something larger. We found what we thought was the perfect home. 4 Bedroom, with a swimming pool. We met the Landlord (Fernando) and his sister (Mary) late afternoon at the home just after it had been vacated by the previous Tenants. The Pool was green, but the house seemed ok on the inside. Fernando promised to take care of the Pool Immediately, and anything we saw that needed repaired or replaced to take care of and send him the receipt. He told us if a major repair needed done, to get 3 estimates, and take the middle, as the cheapest is not always the best as he put it. We felt confident we were in good hands and so left a $2,000 deposit plus $1,395.00 1st months rent.
It has been a nightmare since.
Upon looking over the house the next day, we discovered the Heater did not work. In fact the thermostat was broken altogether. We called Fernando, and with irritation, he said he would take care of it. 3 weeks later, it was fixed. The paint inside was so bad, so full of holes and smelled of smoke and pot, that we realized we had to repaint or hand wash every wall. The walls and ceilings were all Yellow, as if the painter sprayed everything at same time, trim, walls, ceiling, everything. We remembered what Fernando said about the estimates, but realized he likely would not pay for new paint, so we embarked on a paint job that $1,500 later and hundreds of man hours resulted in a beautiful new interior of light grey walls and white trim that would make Martha Steward proud. We found out later what a mistake we had made. After painting we told Fernando we repainted but realized we should have asked permission 1st. He said fine, but next time ask. 1 month later he exploded at me with profanity and threats of Eviction. In Late Feb the Temp was close to 75, we turned on the AC and it did not work. I called Fernando and he exploded again. He screamed that we again should have never painted the house without permission. He compared us with other tenants he was having problems with (he has many properties) and threatened "if you make one more change to this house i will..!" I countered with "there is no reason to threaten us Fernando, we only wanted the AC to work, we dont want any trouble" I again apologized for painting without asking him, but assured him the paint job was beautiful an made the home much more livable.(I was later told by a paint pro, that the professional paint job i did would have cost near $5,000 as the home was over 18,000 sq ft). After a few more F words and some screaming i realized a) I could man up and challenge him or b) eat crow and not be evicted. I felt threatened and worried about my family being tossed out, so i gave in and calmed him down by apologizing several more times as he yelled. I have never been treated this way, and felt humiliated.
This is the way it feels to be dominated i realized. It was a new experience for me. He finally told us he would fix the AC when he got around to it. He also said "its not 100 degrees yet!" Really! He actually said that. Then he said "You push me, i'll push you back". Crap, i realized, i need to suck it up and give in, or look to moving out. My daughter and wife really love this house, but the anxiety and stress i feel dealing with this landlord is more than i can bear. I'm not sure what to do. It is Mid March and the AC is still not working. I think I will wait till April and see if he fixes it. I'm not sure if his behavior is borderline Harassment and abuse, but it feels this way, especially since he made it clear he has evicted other Tenants that have upset him, giving them a 30 day notice. I felt he was sending me a message. I would appreciate any advise anyone can give me as this is a new experience for me. I guess i feel a little stuck having spent $1,500 in paint in the 1st month, thinking i was doing him a favor, only to be screamed at and threatened.

I Appreciate this Site and the Support if offers. Any Help or advise i would greatly appreciate.

Thank You.
I feel better just writing this down.

Sincerely,
J.L.

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