Gratitude 14: Done with the Duplex

February, you nearly killed us!

We used to live in a duplex, and for years we lived in Unit A and rented out Unit B.  It was easy to keep an eye on things when we lived right next door, but now we live all the way across town.  Needless to say, these days it takes a little longer to notice when things go astray at the rental.

And astray they went.

Last month our tenants decided to move to Hawaii, with no intention of telling us they were leaving.  Oh, and they changed the locks before they left.

When we finally got into our old home – the place where we started our family – it was completely trashed.  Filthy.  Full of old beds, couches, and a back yard full of dog waste just waiting for us.  Our smoke-free property was full of cigarette butts and telltale signs of drug use.

We aren’t slumlords or full time property managers, so it felt personal even though we knew this sort of thing happens in the rental market on a regular basis.  My children used to crawl on that carpet that was now stained beyond repair.  My dad did the drywall patch on that now splattered ceiling.  And our sweat equity landscaped the backyard that was now full of feces.

So that was pretty much our February.

We spent nearly every night across town at the duplex.  We celebrated my birthday by ripping out the carpet, and Valentine’s Day was all about removing the popcorn ceiling.  We hardly saw the kids on the long President’s Day weekend, when we dropped them off with family friends to give them a break from the duplex chores (although they helped plenty):

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After all our hard work, I’m proud to say the old place looks fantastic once again.  It’s glowing with new paint, hardwood floors, and a top to bottom scrub down.

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It felt good to get in there and show that home some love again… but oh what a relief to be done with the duplex duties for a while!!

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