How to deal with housemates... - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 10-26-2011, 10:40 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Calgary, AB
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Unhappy How to deal with housemates...

Hey everyone.
I'm really frustrated, and was hoping I could get some advice. It's kind of long, but I would really appreciate any input.

I'm in second year university, and live in a house of 5 girls including myself. Last year, I was in residence (as is the norm at my school) and I met these girls on my floor. The original plan was to live with one of the girls who I really get along with, but when the other 3 asked us to live with them she said yes so I kind of just went along with it. I didn't hate those girls, but we weren't great friends either.
Fast forward a few months and we've finally found a house. There's 2 rooms upstairs (biggest), 2 downstairs (medium) and 1 on the main floor beside the living room/kitchen (smallest). We drew straws for who would get the small room because none of us wanted it, and I didn't lose (yay!). HOWEVER the girl that lost was like "Oh well my dad isn't going to pay our deposit if I don't get the room I want so..." and we all got in a pretty big fight about it. IMO, it's pretty immature to be hiding behind your dad. She drew that room fair and square...but fast forward another couple of months and I'm the one living in it.

Anyways, I'm pretty much over the fact that I'm living in this room, but so many other things have gone wrong in the month and a half that I've been here. All 4 of them smoke. In the house. In the living room specifically, which happens to be beside my room. I have nothing against people that smoke, but when you're living with a non-smoker I think it's really disrespectful. I have asked them not to but they don't really care. Also, they are SO LOUD. I go to bed pretty early (in comparison to them, anyways) and I can never sleep. For some reason they don't have a normal talking voice, they just yell all the time. Finally, when they ask me to do something, if I don't jump up and do it RIGHT AWAY they get all angry and say how I never help and I'm soooo lazy. Like SORRY about to clean all the dishes for you, or get you a cup of water... I'll help, but when you just tell me to do something... No.

I need to get out of this house, but I don't know how. In order to get someone else to take over my room, they have to sign off and agree to it. And I know they won't, they don't want a "random" living with them.

Most of you will probably suggest talking to them, but it doesn't really work out too well. Last time we had a "house meeting" they essentially yelled about how much they hate me and how useless I am because I never clean.

I should have seen the warning signs, and I did a little, but I felt like I didn't have any other choice on who to live with. I never thought it would get this bad.
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post #2 of 7 Old 10-26-2011, 10:46 PM
Green Broke
Join Date: Aug 2011
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did you sign a lease with the owner of the building? That lease should spell out your obligations and termination procedures, I dont see how you would need others to all agree. Just find somewhere else give 30 days notice and move out.
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post #3 of 7 Old 10-26-2011, 10:50 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Calgary, AB
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We signed the lease as a group not individually. This is how the company has all of their leases. It specifically says on the contract that if I wish to leave I will have to either continue paying rent myself or find someone else to pay my portion, but in order to have someone else, the rest of the tenants need to sign and agree to let me look for someone else.
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post #4 of 7 Old 10-27-2011, 12:00 AM
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Alberta, Canada
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Tell them, "I'm sorry, but the smoking is starting to affect my health. Please find someone else to take over my spot and I'll sign the lease over to them. I would appreciate you doing this in 30 days (or however long you figure you need to find another place)."

If they won't do that, they are not only being unreasonable, but are presenting a health hazard to you and I would feel no guilt of breaking the lease right then and there.

What legal action would they have? They are going to force you to live with a bunch of smokers?

Sometimes I wrestle with my demons. Sometimes we just snuggle.
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post #5 of 7 Old 10-27-2011, 12:10 AM
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take the lease to some kind of legal aid place. Id be surprised if a lease like that is even enforceable. You may do some digging and find the house isnt even legally occupied.
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post #6 of 7 Old 10-27-2011, 07:08 AM
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Isn't Canada super strict on smoking indoors?
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post #7 of 7 Old 10-27-2011, 07:33 AM
Join Date: Apr 2009
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Originally Posted by Kiviknon View Post
Isn't Canada super strict on smoking indoors?
Not in a private residence. I've been in a similar situation as the OP and it's incredibly hard to get out of a lease due to bad roommates or bad neighbors in an apartment. Her options are very limited assuming Alberta has similar rental laws compared to Ontario. The only real option that comes to mind is to have someone take over her part of the lease... and not many people are going to line up to move in with a bunch of smokers.

The whole rental system can be rough at times. On one hand I understand why the rental agreements are in place, lots of people screw over landlords and make up frivolous reasons to get out of them. On the other hand, a good living arrangement can turn into hell and often times the tenant is screwed until their lease expires.

My last apartment was great until a family moved above with several small children that would run around / jump at all hours. My dishes would literally clang due to the vibrations, I couldn't sleep or function! My heart rate would go through the roof in the morning until late at night, then start up again when I would be woken up a few hours later. I was 25 and in perfect health only to find myself in an ER one day with dangerously high blood pressure + rapid heart beat with the Doctors thinking I was having a heart attack. Very frighting experience.

In my case I was able to break my lease due to medical reasons and my family Doctor filled out the necessary forms. He basically stated that living in that kind of condition was causing hell on my health and in his opinion, warranted breaking the lease immediately to prevent further harm to myself. I should warn the OP though, it's hard to get a Doctor to fill out these forms. It's usually reserved for serious illnesses, terminal cancers, etc, but it's worth a shot if you think the Doctor will go for it.
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