Nightmare Apartment – Building for Sale

I felt oddly relieved when the building was officially listed for sale. The owner was apparently insane as the listing stated that there would only be a tour of the property after a legally binding offer was made. WTF ? I had a realtor friend do a little research. I learned what the building had been listed and sold for previously, and the dimensions of the lot and other details. Yet “oddly”  – the square footage of the lot had somehow grown between the time the building was sold to the owner and his partner and this new listing ?

This strategy yielded zero viewings. Toronto is a super hot market, so it’s difficult to NOT be able to sell property.

After a month or so, the listing was revised.

The owner got some guy to come in and do laser stuff for a floorplan and square footage. This guy was supposed to photograph my apartment, too but I objected. According to the Ontario Residential Tenancies Act, an owner is not permitted to photograph a tenant’s belongings. The upstairs apartment was photographed by someone – flash snapshots that showed a cluttered coffee table, unmade beds, etc. There were broken boards in the ceiling over the entryway. This was hastily scribbled out using the most amateur of photoshop. The listing claimed that the two apartments were 1000 square feet each, and emphasized the “tens of thousands” that the owner had spent on renovating the property. It mentioned the 600 sq ft “communal deck”.

The salon had spent a lot of money designing and renovating their space, and it looked really good. That asshole was taking credit for this. It was galling.

The revised listing generated a lot of interest. The office the owner worked at started calling and emailing to schedule viewings. They can only be scheduled between 8:00 a.m. and 8 p.m., and tenants must have a minimum of 24 hours notice. This didn’t mean that they didn’t try otherwise – as though the tenants wouldn’t know their rights !

I was curious about how big the apartment actually was. It was an irregular shape due to the airshaft by the bedroom and bathroom windows. I measured it twice, room by room. Including the measurements for the hallway and bathroom and closets(which typically are not included). It was just under 700 square feet ! Where was that other 300 square feet I had been renting ?

There was a flurry of interest with the revised listing. I kept the apartment tidy and clean for all the viewings. I think many viewers were hopeful – the salon facade looked great. Then they would enter the stairwell – which the landlord had not even bothered to sweep  – let alone patch and paint. My apartment was as good as it could look – if you could overlook the exposed pipes in the wall, and the electrical conduit over the doorway. People always wanted to see the 600 square foot communal deck. 100% of them were surprised when I opened the back door to show them this rooftop, with no railings or decking material of any description. This also gave them a good look at the terrifying back of the building.

No offers were forthcoming. I suffered through many viewings.


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