Aug 30 

It is dangerous business we are in.   The story we hear is this landlord accepted a tenant, took the unit off the market and quite a while later the suspect told him he wasn’t moving in and wanted all his money back.  Allegedly the victim offered the deposit back but was retaining the August rent, as he was permitted to do under the law.  What should have been a small claims matter with the owner winning, turned into a felony murder with everyone losing.

I do not know if this had any impact here, but collecting rent in cash add to the danger dramatically.  I own a half dozen properties that the former owner was murdered a couple of decades ago in a robbery gone bad,  One of his tenant’s boyfriends waited outside the property for him as he finished collecting rent, hit him over the head with a banjo or guitar and he died.

Our policy is money orders only.  We  display notices to this effect and will even send the tenant with a thousand dollars in cash to stop an eviction to get a money order.   The check cashing store two doors down from us has been robbed at least twice that I know of.   Robbing us would only get you the staff’s lunch money.

I also would urge owners not to work alone on their properties. Criminals are somewhat deterred when there are potential witnesses.  A handyman working alone is a much less likely target for thieves and those with a grudge than an owner, who is perceived by most to have a lot of money on them.

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