Rising from the Ashes

In hopes to find a place before Thanksgiving of 2017, (that’s when my pets wouldn’t be able to stay at the boarding facility any more) I had offered a deposit of $300/pet. That may not seem like a lot of money to some folks, but for me, after losing my previous home to a fire and having six pets, it’s a lot of dough.

I had sought out the above property prior to my home in Boulder Creek being destroyed, by some crazy guy taking revenge on someone else’s house via arson.

This blue and white house is in a very small town called Pumpkin Center, located just outside Bakersfield, a five hour drive south of where I was currently staying. The property management company agreed to me living there as long as I paid $3000 deposit plus six months rent at $1200/month in advance. $10,600 is a lot of money to put down on a rental!

I drove down there, without looking at the property, and signed the lease for my new home. (Don’t ever do this, no matter what your situation is. Always, always, ALWAYS look at the place you’ll be moving into first.)

My only regrets is I think I could have found something less expensive, and if I had looked at the property first, I would have noticed the shared lot with a taqueria truck (that would steal my electricity and water for eight months before I’d be able to convince either the property management company about my plight or the taqueria people to not steal what doesn’t belong to them.)

After I signed the lease, I went to my new house. The inside was mostly clean, but there were rodent droppings in the drawers (eww), the cupboards were extremely sticky with grease and god knows what (another eww), and the oven – eww again. The inside of the cupboards and drawers were filthy. I’m not talking about a little bit of dirt, I’m talking about built up grime as in black and yellow. Disgusting! The backyard was a mess too. Beer cans, some half full, all over the yard.

I was so tired that first night and slept on the hard carpeted floor with a sleeping bag. The next day, I bought an air mattress from Walmart. Sleeping was much better.

Movers

Weren’t expected to be arriving for another week. I knew I needed a refrigerator because eating out of an ice chest is a bit tedious. (Buying ice and arranging everything so it’ll fit.) I also bought a folding table and a couple of chairs.

After the movers arrived and left, I sat in my living room – full of boxes. Emotional I was. I had just lost everything. There are no words to describe the pain I felt at that very moment. Yes, I lost everything in my house, but I also lost my home (the longest place I’d ever lived.) I lost my cat, Felipe, I lost my family and friends as I had to move away. And my boyfriend had chosen to stay in the Santa Cruz mountains to be closer to his daughter.

Rebuilding

So, I bought the fridge (the cheapest one I could find), a bed frame and mattress, sheets, and blankets, towels, toiletries, a futon, another table and chair for the living room, an antique sewing table as my bedside table, and then a washer and dryer.

I also had to purchase a microwave, silverware, rice cooker, blender, serving utensils, a couple of throw pillows, vacuum cleaner, cleaning supplies, and the list goes on.

People who lose everything in a dire need a lot more than just clothes. I got a boatload of clothes, but no jacket, no shoes/boots, no bathrobe. And of course, nothing to replace the furniture and daily things.

Replacing everything in a house gets very expensive. I bought the sales and deals, I went to Goodwill (but there isn’t a whole lot in Bakersfield to choose from.)

Nine Months Later

My boyfriend decided to move down south to help me with expenses and ease my loneliness. He didn’t see his daughter much, and he missed me too.

And then in the fall, I was asked to move…

Retaliation

As there was a taqueria truck that shared the property with my home, they were stealing my electricity and water. They weren’t supposed to use the electricity from my house. They knew this, but they did it anyway. And then the water… they have their own water, but washed their truck three times per week using my water.

I had asked my neighbor across the street how much she spent on electricity, gas, and water… she has five adults living in her house. And she spends 1/3 of what I was paying. Hmm 🤔

So, I told the property management this, and I had to constantly ask them. I emailed them, and got no response back. I called and kept calling. They never returned my calls or emails. So, I wrote a review about them.

When the broker saw my one star review, he called me and tried to bribe me with $50 to change my review. I told him that if his employees had gotten back to me in a timely fashion, I would not have left a poor review. I also asked him if he was going to take care of the water situation as the electricity problem was already taken care of by the owner’s contractor.

So, I think because I left a poor review, the property manager wanted me out and had first posted a notice on October 3rd telling me I had one month to move out. I had to call them and let them know that my lease wasn’t over until 11.20.2018.

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