Roommates from hell?
Hi. I am in an extremely tough situation, being that I live in Los Angeles in a two bedroom/two bathroom apartment – I have the 2nd bedroom & a couple (he is 30, she is 22) live in the master bedroom. I am 19 years old and this is the first time MY name is on a lease, and I am very happy with the apartment itself & very capable of paying rent/utilities in their entirety.
The couple helped me out about 9 months ago when I was in the process of moving back to the area, and I stayed in their studio apartment for about a month. While I was there, they informed me their lease was up at the end of the following month, and suggested we all move into a 2 bedroom together. Thankful for the help, and happy to not be living alone I agreed and we found a really amazing, very big place for $1600 a month. The female half of the couple and I are the only 2 on the lease, because his credit (apparently) would make getting approved more difficult (she also has some credit issues so we actually got denied at our first choice building, before finding the one we are in now).
I paid all of the move in costs (somewhere near $4200) as a thank you for everything they had done for me, and then we VERBALLY agreed to split rent and utilities (about $350-$400 monthly) – so individually I would be paying $1000 and they would each be paying $500 monthly. She makes minimum $1200 a month and he makes MIN $1500 monthly. They were short (by over $500) the first 2 months, and I covered their parts of the rent – listening to their excuses and feeling bad because they were close friends of mine and I was in the position to be capable of paying for them. We sat down and discussed the problem and they agreed to pay weekly, because they claimed the issue was coming up with the large sum of money at the end of the month.
They each paid their part for 2 consecutive weeks, and then stopped. Since then, I have seen maybe $800 from them, combined, and it has been another 3 months. The utilities and internet and TV are all in her name, but I have been paying them because, well, clearly I need to use the utilities and can not afford to have them shut off.
After 3 months of living in the apartment (it has now been 7) I started telling the male half of the couple that because he is not on the lease, if he does not pay, he must leave. Three separate "pay by" dates came and went and he refuses to leave the apartment, claiming he has squatter’s rights, etc. The female half will not agree to take her name off of the lease, even though I would be able to get approved to have the apartment in my name alone (and then hopefully find a responsible roommate to take their place). I went to my landlord to see if I could pay my way out of the lease somehow (hoping I could pay the next two months rent or something and just get my own place alone) but she said there was no way to do that. Every time we discuss anything, both of them laugh at me, knowing that they will not be paying rent or leaving any time soon. They have bought new cellphones, gone shopping for new clothes, spent days and days sleeping while I work minimum 12 hours a day every single day. I do not want to leave friends out in the cold but I cannot afford the emotional stress of both of them now treating me badly & the financial INSECURITY of supporting two other people & I do not want to ruin my credit by just walking out on the apartment or allowing their lack of rent to get ALL of us evicted…
He has started cutting his hours at work, so that he is home more often, and is consistently and increasingly ruder and more hateful towards me, despite eating the food I buy, living in my apartment for free, and enjoying all of the new furniture I purchased a few months ago. I have no clue what to do, I know now that they are using me and I am not being selfish in wanting them to get out, but I feel so helpless it is pathetic. PLEASE PLEASE if you have any advice for me, share it. I really do not want to let my credit get screwed the ways theirs is, especially now seeing how much it can effect chances of getting a place to live.
Thank you so much for reading all of that.
Will be waiting anxiously….
Edited on: Tuesday, April 24th, 2012 6:55 pm
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