Friends and business (rant) - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 14 Old 08-12-2010, 06:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm going to try to be as brief as possible but this story is long.

I have this very good friend who is renting my place. By good friend I mean I am her friend, but maybe I found that she is not my friend. I was her doula, and I put my life in hold several times when she needed something. I guess you can imagine where this is going.

Let me just say that she is a single mother and she is working on her master degree.

She moved to our place since the beginning of the year. We made arrangements so she would pay only half the rent until she find a roommate. It took her almost two months to place an add. She didn't like any of the candidates, and never renewed the add. After almost a month we asked her about it, and she said she was very busy, but will try to look again. Nothing. One more month we gave her the ultimatum. This time she said fiance is moving in one more month.
So the first almost 6 mos of the year we had to pay half the rent, plus internet for her (don't ask me why). She was late in payments at least twice and still owed us one month of electricity. All the bills are still on our name, she has no money to put them under her name.

We called her and apparently get everything worked out. We get a calendar with dates when she is paying and so forth.

Comes august and the problems begin again. The day when she is supposed to pay the deposit comes and goes, and she doesn't email me. The day when rent is due comes and until midnight when I email her, she responds saying she is sorry she will try to pay me next friday. I immediately respond (through email) saying 'I need to pay the rent tomorrow'. No response, two more days and no response from her.

I send her another email asking her what's going on and she replies in a (very)short email that she will pay me on friday. In my email I'm very blunt, I tell her my feelings are hurt, not because of the lack of payment but the lack of responsibility. She is not explaining she is not telling me in advance, nothing. I feel she is ignoring me.

Friday comes and I hear nothing until 6pm, she says she couldn't get to the bank. First thing saturday the money is deposited. I make the mortgage payment on saturday as well. Weds her check is returned!! I emailed her quickly and she says she is going to the bank to check later that day. Is thursday already and she has said nothing. My account is overdraft by almost 500 and I have other payments to make.

My feelings are really hurt. Yes the money is adding stress to me, but what is really hurting me is the fact that she is ignoring me. She is so busy with her life, she doesn't even have time to email me really quickly giving me an update. I know she is in the computer, because she is available on the chat. I know she is going in an international trip in a few days. Yet I'm here being able to do nothing, knowing nothing about this money issue, hearing nothing from her.

I guess if this was someone else I would only be upset about the money, but with this friend.. uggh we are talking about feelings here.

I was her doula, she forgot about my baby's birth month (not my lo's due date, but birth month). I brought my lo to sleep in the hospital with me, so she wouldn't be alone that first night whit her lo(single mom, remember). I spent the first week of her lo's life sleeping with her (who can sleep with a newborn) and then going to work and caring for my family to later come back and sleep-not with her again. And she can not even take a 5-min.. geesh not even that, maybe a 2-min break to write a quick email and update me.

There is also all this story behind which is probably making things worst..

SOO I'm here debating whether this is any good. Should I ask her to move out, and be the villain? Should I go to debt because of her? Should I ruin my credit score for her? Should I give her one more chance??

I'm lost.
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#2 of 14 Old 08-12-2010, 06:38 PM
 
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Be a friend to someone who treats you like a friend. Period. Her lack of regard is affecting you in more ways than just emotionally, and your family comes first. Always. She has already made her decision about who she is in your life, and it screams to me "User!"

And no...don't do business with friends. I also learned that the hard way. My DH always says "People are fantastic friends until you get too close."
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#3 of 14 Old 08-12-2010, 06:40 PM
 
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I'd tell her that the arrangement is not working out for you. I'd send a certified letter to notify her of the date by which she needs to move out and outline the money that she owes you (I'd include back rent payments as well.) You need to start an official paper trail in case she wont leave. Do you have a signed lease with her? Please check the local laws that govern rental property in your area. If she is willing to take advantage of your friendship to the present level, don't assume that you will be able to get rid of her easily. Starting the paper trail now, benefits you in the long run. It also will make you feel like you are taking control of the situation.

I'd also send her a hand written personal letter explaining that you made a mistake trying to mix friendship and business and that as far as your concerned, the friendship can pick up where it was before she moved in.
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#4 of 14 Old 08-12-2010, 07:01 PM
 
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Some people will always try to get away with everything they can. You will probably never get anywhere with her and it's time to cut your losses because they will grow.

Sorry, these kind of people suck.
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#5 of 14 Old 08-12-2010, 07:38 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cuau View Post
Should I ask her to move out, and be the villain?
Yes, you should tell (not ask) her to move out. And no, doing so does not make you a villain in the least. No grown-up should expect to be able to live somewhere for half-priced rent, with help on utilities, and have no consequences for not even managing to pay that. She's taking advantage of you and she needs to go.

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#6 of 14 Old 08-12-2010, 10:54 PM
 
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my mom is going through the same sort of thing with a "friend" who rented (and trashed) her house. she had a pig in there and there was urine and excrement soaked through to the plywood beneath the flooring! this is a $700,000 house..

you must feel so used and abused. But take a lesson from my mom. get her out! now! its only going to get worse!

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#7 of 14 Old 08-12-2010, 11:18 PM
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I can understand your disappointment and frustration.

From a business stand point, you need to give her the proper legal notices to evict her. there should be a web site (or you can contact a legal aid office) to get this information, and then follow that process to the letter.

You also might be able to go to small claims court to demand rent and whatever bank fees (overdrafts) that you would have to pay due to her not paying (this also depends upon the laws in your state). Of course, you do not have to pursue this money, but in my mind, if someone can afford to travel internationally, they can afford to pay for rent and utilities (unless, of course, the international travel was a gift, a business trip, or in any other way paid by someone else).

I would contact her via email and assert that it is not working out financially, and that you are not in the position to financially support her and her child in addition to your own family, and thus you must find a tenant who can pay the rent in a timely fashion. explain that it is purely a business decision, and that you hope it doesn't harm your friendship.

Of course, she has harmed your end of it, and it may end the whole thing, but it doesn't seem like that big of a loss for you, at this point.

Anyway, good luck!
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#8 of 14 Old 08-13-2010, 03:16 AM
 
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I agree with the pps, you should kick her out if she doesn't shape up immediately.

However, if it makes you feel any better, it's probably not personal. I once lost a friend because I was having a really tough time in my life and, unfortunately, I took advantage of our friendship. It wasn't really like your situation because it wasn't about money, it was just that I was incredibly busy and had some PPD and flaked out on plans twice and then didn't call her. She didn't forgive me, which I still, five years later, feel bad about, but it really had nothing to do with her. It was just that I was unable to function in that relationship at that time, YKWIM?

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#9 of 14 Old 08-13-2010, 04:29 AM
 
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Always protect yourself first. You're the only one who will. Tell her you are overdrafted and losing credit scores and incruing interest and fines because of her. She can't fault you for kicking her out after that.
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#10 of 14 Old 08-13-2010, 06:10 AM
 
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You need to check the eviction process in your area.

Because she has paid you (or was supposed to pay you) and this was a business transactin and you're not living in the house, unfortunately in most areas you may NOT just kick her out.

The longer you keep dragging your feet, the longer it will be before you can get her out, and the more time she has to trash the house in spite. (not an uncommon occurance for an eviction).

How much does she owe you? Hopefully you can go to small claims court. Unless this was a verbal and not written agreement, in which case you're screwed for the back rent. In any case you need to start the eviction process tomorrow. It could take a few weeks to even a few months.

If I were you, I would go through with eviction even if she suddenly pays all the back rent. Hopefully once she receives the paperwork she will leave voluntarily.

You aren't being a villian. You just messed up, in a business sense, by allowing your emotions to overrule your judgement. Everyone makes mistakes.
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#11 of 14 Old 08-13-2010, 11:19 AM
 
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[QUOTE=Cuau;15729332]
the fact that she is ignoring me. She is so busy with her life, she doesn't even have time to email me really quickly giving me an update.QUOTE]

Um, no...she is not too busy; she's purposely avoiding you.
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#12 of 14 Old 08-13-2010, 02:15 PM
 
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Look into the laws in your area. In some places it is nearly impossible to evict someone.

I would definitely take her to small claims court. Her actions are ridiculous.

My advice may not be appropriate for you. That's ok. You are just fine how you are and I am the right kind of me.

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#13 of 14 Old 08-13-2010, 02:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all. Sometimes you need to hear what you know in your heart.

As an update, I asked her about the returned check two days ago, and she didn't respond, last night, I emailed her again and she said she hasn't had time to do that... she has exams and other stuff going on.

Too much for her friendship...
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#14 of 14 Old 08-14-2010, 01:25 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cuau View Post
Thank you all. Sometimes you need to hear what you know in your heart.

As an update, I asked her about the returned check two days ago, and she didn't respond, last night, I emailed her again and she said she hasn't had time to do that... she has exams and other stuff going on.

Too much for her friendship...
Well then, time to show her that she can't save time by trying to brush you off. If you were a regular landlord, she'd've been kicked out long since with a massive fine left to pay off plus all the back rent.
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