The following four examples help show how our family was treated as a subordinate client.\r
The first is being blamed for green waste containers left by the curve side for several consecutive days (considered non-compliance with city ordinance) while we were on vacation. Knowing all too well that we’d be out of town, we left all trash containers in their proper storage. However, upon our return, we were automatically held responsible via phone call and subsequent written correspondence, and we were asked not to do it again to avoid paying a fine. It should have been noted that the gardeners (who were directly hired by the owner) were to blame for having the habit of leaving the bins out as a courtesy, but which happened to backfire in our absence.\r
Next involves being asked to substantially increase water consumption (at our expense) to irrigate the grass during the worst drought in recent history. We had no issue initially – it was included in our rental agreement that we would help with the maintenance of the lawn. Nonetheless, we found it disconcerting that the owner’s request was acted upon immediately, but when we requested for the owner to consider employing a water-saving landscape alternative, we were met with reluctance and subsequent disregard by the PM.\r
Later came an unwarranted garbage disposal fee. After many times of cleaning the feeble appliance, we called the PM to inform them of our fruitless labor and requested to have it looked at to improve performance. At this point, they could have simply instructed us to leave it alone because it was a known issue that the motor was not strong enough to be more effective. But a repair person was quickly provided to us, and his lack of expertise concluded that a small seed was the cause of inefficiency. Obviously, this caused the owner to refuse to pay for the repair visit as it was believed that our negligence had been responsible for the blockage (even though we never used it beyond its intended use). Disgusted with the outcome, my wife called the PM to complain about the charge, and she was told that the “nature” of the service call made it necessary for us to pay. But just as we expected, the garbage disposal clogged back up the very next day – without us having even touched it. A second repair person came, and he correctly found that the appliance needed to be replaced with a newer model to avoid unnecessary clogging. We then went back to the PM with the new findings, but all they said was for us to provide a written request for the owner to decide whether or not to cancel our fee, which we did immediately. Unfortunately, the PM didn’t even have the courtesy to respond to us one way or another, most likely because the owner was never contacted to begin with. We can conclude that either the PM forgot to follow up, or it hoped for us to forget about the issue at hand. Either way, it’s unprofessional on the PM’s part, and it’s certainly not the way we’re used to doing business. To add insult to injury, the PM cowardly discounted this fee from our rental deposit when we moved out, without further attempts at granting our request.\r
The last point concerns charging us for a drape rod upon moving out, erroneously claimed to be missing by the owner. What I find so appalling about this discrepancy is that the drape rod was simply moved by us from the kitchen to the master bedroom, and the PM’s property photos – which they were very quick to alert us of prior to moving in – should have caught this fact. It is true that the owner should have kept accurate records, but they are also paying the PM good money to keep track of this. Coincidently, the PM’s lack of due diligence does agree with an online rebuttal to another of their many negative reviews: “The tenant was only charged for items the property homeowner instructed our company to charge him for”. With that logic, the tenant has an uphill battle to fight and is the only one who stands to lose.