Should I move?
January 9, 2007 9:02 AM   Subscribe

Should I move or should I stay and bear just a few more months till I have a better idea about my job?

My landlord rents out 3 of 4 bedrooms in a single family house. One of which is occupied by yours truely. Since my move-in about a year ago, one of the three rooms has been empty twice. One of those times my landlord told me about the room and quoted the price that's 250bucks more than what I am paying. While the price isn't unreasonable, I didn't want to pay 250 just to have my own bathroom and a little more space. Since then a new roommate moved in and during my conversation with her the other day, I learned that this roommate is paying just $50 more than what I am paying as opposed to +250 . This comment was made, in passing, by the new roommate who also said that she was told she can pay less after a few months.

I'd been considering moving out because I occupy the basement room and it gets loud with people walking around upstairs(wooden, squeaky floor in old house).

I would move, but I had a horrible experience when I first came to DC that I am afraid I'll get horrible people. The two landlords(husband and wife) can be nosy and annoying but are also nice, generous and quick to respond if I have a question/problem. But I've been asking for changes that are doable, as opposed to fixing the entire floor upstairs to help with the noise, they are too cheap to fix that.

I am also expecting a considerably major change in April or so in regards to my work and whether I should move closer to downtown.

My main concern is the noise and the possible price misquoting deception on my landlord's part...which she is entitled to change whenever she wants.

Everybody has landlord issues and others' always seem worse than mine, but what would YOU do?
posted by icollectpurses to Human Relations (11 answers total)
Stay. The devil you know is better than the devil you don't. Your situation doesn't sound awful at all. Wooden floors are squeaky, period. Can you talk to your upstairs neighbors about getting some carpeting to help with the nosie?
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 9:24 AM on January 9, 2007 [1 favorite]

Stay. You know that in three months you'll have much better information, possibly better pay, and be in a better situation to make a decision.
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 9:37 AM on January 9, 2007

In Philadelphia TURN (Tenant Union Rights Network) is an invaluable resource for these kinds of questions and issues. It looks like TENAC is the DC tenant rights group; should you stay they may be able to help you with some of your tenant/landlord questions.
posted by The Straightener at 9:43 AM on January 9, 2007

Stay. Three months seems like a long time when you're in an uncomfortable situation but it'll pass quickly. In the meantime, do everything possible to make your space comfortable. Maybe invest in some of those ambient sounds CDs? Sounds hokey but it worked for me when I lived in Miami and had a neighbor who liked her sex loud ... and often.
posted by notjustfoxybrown at 10:13 AM on January 9, 2007

There could have been a number of reasons why the new roommate is paying only $50 more than you. Maybe she negotiated? There is a myriad of other reasons other than your landlord trying to deceive you.

You should definitely stay until April, at least, and see where you stand at that point.
posted by spec80 at 11:29 AM on January 9, 2007

Most likely your landlord WANTED $250 more but was faced with continuing losses from an empty room and accepted a counter-offer. *shrug* Sometimes you just can't get the chances at such things for whatever reason.

I Nth the suggestion you live with it. A move is a major PITA if you might have to do it again in 3 months.
posted by phearlez at 1:06 PM on January 9, 2007

Stay. Also, I suggest you get out of the house as often as possible, so you don't have to hear/stew over all the noise: even just spending a few hours of the evening reading a book at a library/coffeeshop instead of at home could help you feel less trapped by the noise.

Also, I agree with phearlez that your landlord wasn't trying to trick you.
posted by Sprout the Vulgarian at 1:55 PM on January 9, 2007

Did you ASK if you could pay less? Did you give the landlord a counter-offer or have you ever asked if he would lower your current rent? Because your roommates probably just negotiated.
posted by echo0720 at 2:23 PM on January 9, 2007

Another vote for what phearlez said.
Also, what kind of tenant are you? Rent always on time or do they have to ask you for it? Lots of complaints or do you try to keep it to a minimum? etc. Would you want you for a tenant? If yes, they probablywant to keep you.
Moving is a hassle. Having a vacant space is also a big hassle: advertising, showing, negotiating etc. Ask your landlords what they can do for you. Tell them you spoke to the new tenant and you would have been OK with paying $50 more and would they consider lowering your rent since you're in the basement with no private bathroom. BE NICE, phrase it so they don't feel a need to get defensive.
I hate to negotiate, I'm not good at it and I feel like I'm begging. The one phrase I can usually spit out is, "Can you do any better on the price?:,
The new tenant is probably good at negotiating. Your landlords probably aren't if they got talked down $200.
BE NICE. You want them to be thinking "Oh, we'd hate to lose icollectpurses", not "Thank ya Jesus we're getting rid of the bitch in the basement".
posted by BoscosMom at 4:38 PM on January 9, 2007

Response by poster: Thank you for all the comment!

I really don't think I have it landlords are nice to me and I am nice back. I try to help them out with this and that and my rent(BoscosMom:) is ALWAYS at least 5 days early. Anything is possible as to what I heard about the rent my other roommate is paying.

Thanks again!
posted by icollectpurses at 6:08 PM on January 9, 2007

Since you are a good tenant there is a good chance they kind of feel guilty about the discrepancy but they probably won't bring it up if you don't.
posted by BoscosMom at 8:42 PM on January 9, 2007

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