Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Given the circumstances, it's hard not to reflect on the last time I overpaid my rent to avoid being forced to move. It was less than a year ago. My roommate at the time reneged on five hundred dollars for which she and I were "jointly and severally liable", meaning if one of us didn't cover it, the other was still on the hook. Her parents picked that moment to stop bailing her out and it made little difference to her whether the money came out of her deposit or my pocket; she moving soon anyway.
I was already looking for a third roommate at the time, and the difference for me was one of having to find one more person to sign the lease or two. I reasoned that a clean housing record was worth those five hundred dollars and more. At any rate, it was a swift education in how quickly you can find yourself protecting your landlord's investment in order to save your own hide.