I told you yesterday that we had court last Thursday for E2 (the tenant didn’t show) and were finally able to access our house on Saturday, 48 hours later. We were greeted by fleas and the smell of dogs and rotten food. There were also cigarette butts all over the garage and back porch, as well as ashes in the carpet and windowsills of the master bedroom.
Which is odd, because the lease stipulates no smoking and no pets. They didn’t have pets when they moved in, and they weren’t smokers. I’m pretty sure the dogs and cigarettes came in when the female went out.
The fleas were horrible! There was no way we were going to get anything done on the inside. I put down flea powder throughout the house while the hubs moved the junk to the garage. Then we went outside. There was plenty to do out there.
Like pull all of the grass and weeds out of the flower beds.
How does it get that overgrown in a few months? I worked on that while the hubs started mowing.
Thankfully, someone had been mowing the front yard. But the side and backyard hadn’t been mowed in quite some time. The hubs had to keep stopping after every two strips and empty the bag. He had to mow over the course of two days, because he was running out of daylight. It shouldn’t take that long to mow the yard. It’s a tiny lot. I also didn’t finish the flower beds in one day, but made quite a bit of progress.
Side note: Do you know what I miss most about Norman? And I’m not even kidding. No hyperbole or exaggeration or sensational speech. Not saying it just because it was needed at this moment. It’s really the thing that I’ve said I miss most often since being in Edmond. Football traffic? Art galleries? Music festivals? Hipster coffee shops? No, no, no, and no. It’s this.
You can put nine bags of yard waste on your curb, and the City of Norman will pick them up. Edmond doesn’t even run a yard debris truck. You can keep your dumb festivals and trillion dollar animal shelters and wannabe hipster philosophizing pot-smoking “artists,” but give me a yard debris pickup! Please?? (Okay, what I REALLY miss the most is our HOA pool hours there, but the yard debris pickup is definitely second. If you’re reading this and you live in Norman, it’s not personal. 🙂 You might be somewhere down on the list.)
We left Edmond right after church on Sunday to go down and get to work. We already had existing plans to meet my Mother-in-law before we knew we’d be spending the day working on the house, so she met us at the rent house and got to work (after spending some time with the grandkids and making a Walmart run for cleaning supplies) because she’s awesome like that.
Sunday was an interesting day. It was emotional for me. We lived in that house two different times, with the last time being for three consecutive years. I haven’t lived anywhere else for three straight years since leaving home nearly 20 years ago. If I had to pin down a house and/or neighborhood that felt like home, that would have been it. We loved it there and have lots of great memories. Not to mention that we re-did the kitchen the year before we moved out, and the master bath just a couple months before. If we wanted to live in Norman, it would definitely be there (even though it’s kinda tight for our homeschooling family of five). Our Norman days are likely over for good, but it doesn’t make it any easier to see someone trash my home.
So? How bad was it?
Well, the hubs and I were trying to decide if E1 or E2 was worse, and if you recall, we’d never had a house left in as bad of shape as E1 was. We disagree on which was worse. I think, overall, E2 was worse. He thinks E1. It’s a close call, because they were different kinds of nasty. E1 was a family who just lived dirty. They were there for a little over three years and didn’t clean well for all that time. You can go back and read all about it if you’d like, but pretty much they just didn’t clean, they spilled food all over the carpets, and had a major issue with putting holes in walls.
E2 was a different kind of nasty. They were only there for nine months total, and the guy was there alone (with his dad staying with him for a short while) for maybe four months. It was clean until that point, I’m pretty sure of it.
I hate to be sexist, but stereotypes exist for a reason. Single men are gross. Not all of them, I’m aware of that. I’m pretty sure if my husband were single, he’d keep a cleaner house than we have currently. He’s awesome like that. His Momma did a great job raising him! But, typically, men aren’t as clean as women. That’s just how it is.
The amount of hair from shaving that was in/around/on his sink in the master bathroom could keep orphans warm in winter. There were dishes in the dishwasher that hadn’t been washed and just molded. I’m thinking he didn’t open the dishwasher one time after she left.
I’m pretty sure he may have waxed something in his spare bedroom. A motorcycle perhaps? I’ve known more than one single man to bring his motorcycle into the house. I’m not making this up. Thank God they ended up with wives.
There were also at least a dozen candy wrappers in that room (many more to the right of this photo). I’m not sure if he just liked to eat candy while waxing or if he may have dumped a trash can out on the floor?
The toilets were how you’d expect. I’m a mom to three boys. I’m used to cleaning diarrhea splatter off the underside of the toilet seat and urine off the
ceiling floor/wall/shower curtain. But doing that for a grown man that I don’t even like. Well, it was…what’s the right word?…vomit-inducing. Twice.
The pantry was full of food, including a bag of produce that had likely been there for four or five months. It was leaking funky juices everywhere. There was also some sort of unidentifiable sticky black substance all over one pantry shelf that seemed to be the source of the whole-house rotten food smell. The hubs handled that part.
The carpets were so, so gross. I am aware that some of you guys like animals. I’m not a fan. I realize there is a way to have pets in your home without it being disgusting, but this guy didn’t know how to do that. The amount of dog hair was making me dry heave.
I’m trying to keep the pics to a minimum, and not show any major details as with the last house, but can you see that hair? There were balls of that everywhere. (It wouldn’t show up in pics on the carpet, but this is an example from the tile.) How do you not look like a walking stuffed animal with that floating around all over your house? The hubs picked up a basket-ball sized wad of hair in the master bedroom. *gags*
The electricity and gas had been cut off. Or maybe he had them turned off? (I know they were on just a few days before, because the porch light was on when I drove by on the way home from E1 one night.) So all the food in the refrigerator went bad. Chunky milk, etc, etc. The freezer was full of meat, so that was a nice smell. And there was blood dripping all over.
The bedroom where we had our classroom was really the only place (besides the carpet) where there was actual damage. The faux wood floor in there is all torn up. So that’s not as bad as E1. Wait. The storm door handle was also broken off. Oh, and there were two broken refrigerator door shelf/drawers, just like in E1 and ironically that had happened to the refrigerator that was in our current home when we bought it (which had been a rental). I don’t understand. Is that like a renter thing? I’ve never broken one of those. My boys (who have climbed in the refrigerator from time to time) have never broken one of those. How does that even happen? Those dumb replacements are like $40-$60 each.
The kitchen cabinets had food on them. Up high. Like someone maybe had a food fight. That I do understand. I’d totally throw food at this guy.
The bathtub in the main bathroom was funky. I’m not sure what was being washed in that tub, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t just a normal body. I cleaned it six times (spray it, scrub it, rinse it. spray, scrub, rinse. spray, scrub…) before the dirt was all gone, granted it was with cold water since the gas was off.
So I don’t know. Different kinds of nasty. Both really bad. All I know is that I didn’t throw up in E1 and there was no dog hair and no fleas and no cigarettes and no meat blood. So I want to say that E2 was the worst, but it does seem that it is cleaning up quicker. Maybe it’s just that the areas that were filthy were so extremely disgusting. I guess it’s a tie.
We had the electricity turned back on on Monday, so the hubs went down after work and was able to weed eat and tame some over-grown bushes (our hedge trimmers and weed eater are electric, not gas). He also vacuumed the floors five times to get up the flea powder and most of the dog hair. I’ll have to do it another three times before we steam it probably (it’s STILL pulling dirt and hair).
The gas was turned on on Tuesday and the hubs was able to take off work, so he stayed Monday night in the fresh and clean E1 and just drove across town to E2 the next morning. He was able to get in there and do some serious cleaning with hot water. I didn’t go down until we finished school, and I was pleasantly surprised. By that time, it looked (and smelled) much better than I expected.
He spot treated the worst areas of the carpet. It still needs an over all steam cleaning, but it’s looking better. I’m not convinced that all of the spots are going to come out.
These carpet situations are about to push me over the edge. Why do they have to destroy the most expensive item in the entire house?
But anyway. A thoughtful friend came over Tuesday evening and helped me wipe down all of the baseboards, doors, windowsills, and trim. There are a few spots that will need a coat of paint, but they don’t look terrible.
As of the time we left Tuesday night, we still need to finish the yard work, dust the fans, light fixtures, blinds. Finish cleaning the kitchen and clean the bathrooms again now that we have hot water and enough light to see all the funk better. Mop all the tiled floors, steam all the carpets, replace the flooring in the front bedroom. Clean the windows and vacuum out all of the kitchen and bathroom drawers and shelves (lots of crumbs and nastiness). So pretty much regular cleaning, but tons of it.
If we can get the carpet to come clean, we might have that house back up for rent after the weekend. *Fingers crossed*