The worst thing about being a renter is that it’s the landlord’s way or the highway. The best thing about being a landlord? It’s your way or the highway just the same! Some people accept that with great power comes great responsibility, and they act with care and kindness trusting in tenants’ humanity and the general belief that most people understand that trashing a place means they won’t get to stay. Some people take this responsibility and go on an absolute power trip. Most rules enacted have some sense and reason behind them, but not all of them. Below are some of the oddest rules enacted that tenants had to abide by. Or they left, and it’s hard to blame them.
No Sidewalk Chalk
Parents were up in arms to find a new rule that their landlord posted. Their children had the innocent hobby of sidewalk art, pulling an old Mary Poppins to decorate the pavement. It’s an age-old past time, filled with small hopscotch designs and stick figure designs that anyone can remember from their childhood. So, when the tenants woke up to see a sign alerting them that sidewalk chalk was banned, they were more than a bit miffed.
Supposedly, the rule was always in place, as the innocent decorations were considered ‘graffiti’ and the landlord received complaints of ‘vulgar’ drawings. That was why the long-term rule was suddenly being enforced, but the manager decided not to show anyone pictures of the said vulgar drawings.
Use this is a good way to remember that having objective evidence for making unpopular decisions can help you save face.
Share a Single Bed with Three Others
When someone rents a space, they tend to expect that space to be ‘theirs.’ At the very least, they expect the bed to be theirs! Not this bed, however, as a landlord posted their space for rent at $123, with no unit of time listed. Per week? Per month? It’s unclear. The bed offered was going to be shared between shift workers expected to take turns sleeping. The single bed was advertised for two of each, adding up to four people to occupy the space in a given time. It’s hard to imagine this working out for either party.
Alcohol Free Property
One or two oddball rules might be just fine, but Margolyn Cardell took the prize when her request went viral. No loud noises after nine in the evening, no laundry during the workweek, and no drinking, ever. Her post became quite the conversation piece, but not from people interested in renting. Plenty of people questioned banning the rather standard adult beverage, to which she replied, “Don’t like the rules, buy a tent.” This was apparently a reasonable reply for her, as she said: “drinkers fall down a lot and lose their jobs, so they need tents.”
No Ferrets - In the Whole City!
This could be a reasonable rule, should there be a decent reason to ban ferrets. New York City has a highly detailed list of animals that are illegal to keep as pets, and many of them can be expected. The law includes animals like wasps and camels, but in 1999, Rudy Giuliani added ferrets to the list.
Why? This friendly little animal isn’t known for any vicious nature. They are more known for being furry worms. While the law isn’t uncommon (they are also banned in California), the only reason for the banning seemed to be that Giuliani just didn’t like them, and that was it. When Giuliani updated the law to ban ferrets as well as wasps, many were just confused. When asked to explain himself, Giuliani responded with a two-minute rant that is available on YouTube, where he explained that being worried about ferrets was sickening.
Thankfully, most tenants don’t have to deal with such rules, and thankfully, most landlords wouldn’t ask tenants to do so in the first place. With respect being a two-way street, some of the best renting situations are with the more standard rules and good tenants to boot.
What is the most ridiculous rule that you've seen in your time as a property owner?
Let us know in the comments!