January 12, 2018 at 11:39 pm #735821
So I lived with my sister for a year. I am 20-21 during this time which she was 34. She and I have never gotten along. While living there I paid her rent. She would come in my room while I wasn’t there and take pictures because it was messy and distribute them to my family. I never have her permission and it is literally illegal to do so and humiliating. I did not appreciate being made a spectacle out of because I was going through a lot mentally at the time and couldn’t be fucked being clean. To be fair, in her opinion it was rotten, mouldy, whatever. But I paid her money to stay there, it was my own stuff and my own groceries.
She has called me retarded, told her children I don’t love them, called scandalizing me to all my family. Her husband is abusive to her children and she stands by him and is a major cause of her stress. I don’t respect her. I genuinely don’t. But she is my sister so I truly tried. This was the main bone of contention I had with her— how she treats others. She screams at everyone and treats everyone like shit. I find it very hard to have any respect therefore cares for anyone like that.
I move out to live on campus and offer her money for whatever damages there were to the room— to have tthe walls pasted where I stuck something with glue/painted and the carpet steamed. This is back when I had money. She declines and I move on.
I come back for Christmas— and she takes her family and goes away from Christmas through New Years leaving me all by myself for the holidays. Again to be fair she had a small Christmas with me before she left but it was brief and clearly she didn’t care to actually spend Christmas with me. She tells me I can bring my rats.
My one rat gets out. After two days of being missing I finally usher him back into the room, but not the cage. I understand this is not ok but I had to leave for work and he had crawled away and was very hard to catch amongst all the nooks and crannies of the room, same goes to as to why he was missing for two days. Of course as soon as she gets back she comes snooping in my room and discovers my rat outside of my cage and tells me I’m kicked out despite knowing I have nowhere to go. I tell her I’m leaving on the 5th and after my mom talks to her she agrees to wait those four extra days. I spend virtually no time there because I am very hostile about how she deals with things and really want nothing to do with her. During this time the whole family is calling me up yelling at me. I’m ostracized and denigrated.
Anyway, later on, I’m back on campus and have yet to return to pick up my things because I’ve been avoiding her. She then messages me threatening to take me to court if I don’t produce $1000 immediately and insists I take out a loan, which I can’t, because my rats have chewed through the wires to her washer apparently. I am almost sure she is trying to intimidate me but it’s unnecessary and so dramatic it fills me with so much rage. She humiliates me to everyone and then lords it over me. I don’t make $1000 a month and besides that I had been intending to slowly pay her a full $4000 for a new washer and dryer as I could. Then she sends me that message and all my sympathy is drained.
My mom gets involved, my other sister gets involved. I don’t want sides anymore. I’m so exhausted. But I don’t deserve to be treated this way when I’ve given her no reason to doubt my integrity when it comes to money. While living there I paid all my rent on time and when moving out I offered money for damages. When she makes everything into a battleground I lose interest in having any sympathy for her.
I know I’m not in the right but is the following an appropriate letter— AND should I even borrow the money from my friends? I don’t know how I’m going to pay it back and it makes me super uncomfortable.
First, this is what she sent me:
“We need the money to cover the repairs for the washer because the insurance isn’t going to cover it now. We are not sure of the cost but the parts are on order .
We also need $1000 for the deductible because the insurance isn’t covering that because of the damages caused to the washer because of your rat. And we need to get the damages fixed down stairs and we are moving and need to put the house up for sale. So we need that money like asap !!! As the insurance isn’t covering the damages until the deductible is paid. You may have to get a loan somewhere .. But we are tapped out. Pierre said if you don’t cover this he is taking you to small claim court”
My potential response:
“I don’t know whether you’re trying to get out the big guns to scare me or not but i have never given you any indication that I would not pay you fair dues for anything. While living there I paid all my rent on time every month, when I moved out I offered you money for damages which you declined, and you have no reason to doubt my integrity when it comes to being fair about money. So to go as far as to demand this money right now, this instant, or COURT— WHEN from the get go I was planning on paying you back the full $4,000 over a span of time— considering I don’t even make $1000 a month— is outrageous. I was sorry until you started getting on like this. I am lucky to have two good friends who both offered to lend me money which I could pay back at a reasonable pace. I am not an unfair person.”
Should I even take the money from my friends? I would genuinely get a nightjob and pay them back like within two months.
I really want to block and delete her from everything but it’s not worth the drama but I’m sick of her intruding on my life. I want to be as far removed from her as possible.
I get that I’m immature to expect there to be no consequences for my uncleanliness but at least I’m levelheaded and don’t take my anger out on others. I’m dealing with a lot of shit internally right now and I’m having so much difficulty not blowing up.January 13, 2018 at 7:24 am #735831
Well, you are at fault here. I don’t know why you live with a sister you don’t get along with in the first place. But here, you are responsible for the damage so yes, you have to pay the deductible. I wouldn’t send your letter but just pay these 1000$. Borrow it to your mom rather than to your friends and pay her back little by little.
The promise to pay the full later isn’t credible. Pay it now because you damaged a necessary equipment in a household, she needs it now, and it will free you of her hook. Be an adult here and be independent. It starts with paying your debt and find an other accommodation. Frankly, I wouldn’t want a roommate with a rat…January 13, 2018 at 7:32 am #735833
What Brise said. It struck me too that you shouldn’t have been staying with her after how it went when you lived there; you sound negligently filthy; and you’re at fault for the damage to the washer (which, yes, they need fixed immediately so they need the money immediately). It doesn’t matter that you paid rent on time or offered money to cover damage to your room. They need their washer fixed now. That letter wasn’t inappropriate, just fed up. Don’t borrow money from friends, borrow it from your parents.January 13, 2018 at 10:20 am #735837
I agree with the others. You are at fault here. Part of being an adult and part of being a pet owner is taking responsibility for any damages caused by yourself. The loss of their washer and dryer is directly your fault. You didn’t keep your rat caged appropriately and it got out and did serious damage. Just because you paid your rent on time doesn’t mean that they have the money to repair these appliances that they use probably nearly every day. They need the money now because they need these appliances now. They have every right to take you to small claims court and would certainly win the case. You telling the judge that you always paid your rent on time would not help you in this case. It is a separate matter. The matter is you didn’t keep your rat caged. Your rat chewed up wires. You pay for the repair of the wires.
Move out, which you have done. Don’t live with someone you dislike. I’m assuming that living with your sister was cheaper than living in other places near or on campus so you moved in to save money and were willing to put up with a grumpy sister because the price was right. Your sister was doing you a favor by allowing you to live in her home.
Do not send the email. You were a tenant in their home who caused serious damage and they need the money. It isn’t outrageous that they expect you to cover that damage. Any property owner would expect the same.
Learn to keep your rat caged so that it can’t escape.
Borrow the money and pay it back.
Apologize to your sister for allowing the damage to happen. This will show far greater maturity than your angry email claiming she is outrageous for wanting you to take responsibility for your own poor decisions.January 13, 2018 at 11:04 am #735842
Sorry, I’m not going to side with you either. “Going through a lot mentally” doesn’t excuse you from the damage you did to her property, and you owe her not just the money, but a sincere apology. It’s not just the washer and dryer. If you had rotten, moldy stuff in your room, I’m sure it stank, and it was a potential health hazard to her kids. Not to mention the likelihood of getting an insect problem that would have cost her a small fortune to get rid of. It was the height of disrespect to create that level of filth in her home. Doesn’t matter that it’s your stuff. IT’S HER HOUSE.
Yeah, I know, adulting is hard, and you’re stressed out. But if you can’t even manage basic cleanliness, maybe you need to move back in with your parents until you can handle living on your own.
I was going to suggest getting your own place when I first read your post, but honestly, a commercial landlord would have evicted you and sued you, and if you couldn’t pay right away, they would have had your wages garnished. You were really lucky that your sister let you get away with it for as long as she did.January 13, 2018 at 11:21 am #735846
Yeah, Essie, that’s the situation with my brother (45, has some challenges). He can’t live in an apartment because he’d get evicted. Has in the past. My parents can’t deal with his level of slovenliness in their house, where they tried having him live for a while. So for the past decade or more, he’s been living in a studio condo that they bought. Unfortunately, in order to keep him from getting fined or kicked out by the condo board, and to keep the property from getting irrevocably damaged, my parents have to pay for their cleaning woman to clean his place, and my dad goes over there regularly to haul out bags of garbage my brother doesn’t bother to take out. There was a mouse problem too, not sure if it’s fully resolved or not.
Megan, don’t be like that. Now is the time to start keeping your surroundings decent. What you described isn’t excusable.January 13, 2018 at 11:27 am #735847
Whether or not your sister is a deranged bitch is irrelevant. That said — if my sister let her rat roam free in my house for days and days, pissing and shitting everywhere, oh and chewing through the wires on MY washing machine — you can damn well bet my own reaction would be… uh, bitchy to say the least…
NEWSFLASH! You ARE at fault here. 100%. You are to blame here — 100%. Grow the fuck up. Deal with it.January 13, 2018 at 12:13 pm #735851
What everyone else said. Pay your sister.
But as a side note, not everyone has the knowledge & ability to clean( examples like mental health uses, they’ve had parents who micromanage everything about their lives but didn’t teach basic skills, laziness or whatever) so here’s an example of an issue that could be in your future. Read the answer but also read the comments as some of them figured ways around being messy.January 13, 2018 at 12:31 pm #735852
1. While your exact obligations depend on the laws of your state/city, you have obligations as a lodger/tenant to your sister because you are paying her rent. Paying rent does not excuse your obligation under the law to take reasonable care of your room and any shared common areas.
2. Because your sister owes and lives on the property, she likely does not have the same obligation to provide advance notice to enter your room. In California, a state with very strong tenants’ rights, an owner who lives in the house has the right to enter the room you are renting at any time of the day or night for any reason. While your sister sending photos of your room to your family was not the best way to resolve your poor behavior, I doubt that her behavior violated any laws. At a minimum, she likely had every right to enter your room.
3. As a lodger, you likely have a duty to keep your space as clean and sanitary as possible, dispose of trash/garbage in a clean and sanitary manner, and not damage, destroy, or deface the property. Per your own account, you completely failed to live up to this obligation.
4. Because you failed in your obligations, your sister will likely prevail in any court action to recover money owed to her for your damage to her home. If anything, a court will more likely find you liable because you paid rent to your sister.
5. If you behaved this way in any rental with an off-site landlord, that landlord would likely take you to court to force you to pay for the entirety of your damage to that apartment. You would likely be unable to rent suitable units because of your rental history.
The only reason you seem to think that your sister is in the wrong is because you don’t have the money to pay her back. If you can’t pay for damages caused by your intentional behavior and negligence, you should not be renting an apartment. I’m not sure if your family would even let you stay that long, based on your side of the story. You need to grow up and take responsibility for your actions.January 13, 2018 at 12:51 pm #735853
What the others said. Also, if you don’t get along with someone, don’t live with them. If you want more freedom to have moldy food in your place, then live alone. But even then, your landlord CAN require you to be relatively clean to avoid long-term damage to the home. My old roommate’s cat was not super hygienic with its litter box, and she owed $2500 after we moved out because the carpet, counter, and parts of the wall had to be replaced.January 13, 2018 at 9:28 pm #735861
Not sure how you’re planning on paying her $4k slowly when you can’t pay $1k now? She needs a new washer and dryer NOW, not in 2 yrs when you can repay that amount. And she’s not asking you for $4k she’s asking you for $1k – if she takes you to small claims court (which she has every right to do) that’s not evidence you want in writing.
I’d recommend looking into some mental health services on campus – learning coping skills to help during hard times will go a long way so you don’t reach the point where you can’t handle cleaning.January 14, 2018 at 1:56 pm #735888
What everyone else has said is correct. You need to pay your sister that money. You sound incredibly irresponsible in letting your rat out of its cage. It’s not “outrageous” that she expects you to pay for what your pet damaged in a realistic amount of time. And because of the situation here, expect that money up-front IS a realistic amount of time.
Don’t borrow the money from your friends. You mention you don’t know how you’d ever pay that $1,000 back to them if you borrowed it. If that’s true, you really shouldn’t be sending anyone notes saying you’re good for the money. Clearly, you’re not.
All that said, you don’t sound mature or financially ready to be living away from home and if it’s an option, you should consider moving back home with your parents until you are. If it’s not an option, try to find a place where the rent is low enough for you that you can be saving some of your income. Emergency savings are for situations like this where something unexpected happens and you have to pay a chunk of money upfront.
ETA: FFS, learn to clean up after yourself. One of my college roommates is a very messy person, to the point that her car grosses me out. This sounds like a whole ‘nother level of filth and you won’t always be in a situation where you’re living with family members who wouldn’t hold you to the same legal responsibilities as a landlord.