I got there 20 minutes early (it was really close to work) and sat in my car for a little while, waiting. The week before, I had spoken to the landlord and he had given me the option of checking the place out that week with the superintendent, or waiting until Monday and meeting with him personally--that way he could tell me more about the place and really "make sure I love it" or something. I agreed to meet him on Monday.
5:25, I get out of the car and go to wait outside the main entrance. I think it's good form to be at least 15 minutes early for meetings, but no one is there yet. I wait for a while, and at 5:35 I consider that maybe there's a back entrance that they're waiting for me at, not realizing I'm at the front. So I call the landlord (let's call him Steve) and it rings about 10 times and goes to voicemail. I leave him a message that basically says, "Hi, Steve. It's Alison. We had an appointment at 5:30 for you to show me [address]. I'm just wondering if there's a back door I should go to...? I'm standing out front if you're looking for me. Call me back."
About ten minutes later my phone rings, and it's Steve.
"There's no one there to let you in?" He asks. "Are you sure there's no one around?"
I'm literally standing completely by myself on an empty block. There's street parking in front of me, but my car is the only one there.
"I'm sure." I tell him.
"I told Bob that you were coming at 5:30 so that he'd show you the place! Let me call him and call you right back."
...despite the fact that I had made an appointment specifically with STEVE and not Bob.
Steve calls me back in a few minutes and tells me that Bob isn't answering his phone. Awesome. Steve doesn't know what to do. I tell him I'll wait in my car for 20 more minutes while he tries to get in touch with Bob, and if he can't get to him by then, I'll leave and come back tomorrow.
About 20 minutes later Steve calls back.
"Bob should be on his way now. I'm going to text you his cell phone number."
I'm not sure why I need Bob's cell phone number, but I accept and go back outside to wait by the door. Another 15-20 minutes later, Bob still hasn't shown up, so I text him that I'm going to wait for him in my car. He says, "Okay. Be right out."
?????? Be right out?! What has he been doing this whole time?
About 5-10 minutes later, a guy looking like Kevin Federline with a heroine problem (and that's a compliment) comes towards my car with a friend of his. Awesome. He lets me in the building and as I go up the stairs I notice there's been a leak in the ceiling and the soggy tiles have caved in. Awesome.
"So, how many bedrooms did Steve tell you this place has?" Bob asked me.
"Oh, I'm looking at the one bedroom." I say. He laughs.
"I'll let you be the judge of that." He says.
He lets me into an apartment that has a decently sized kitchen but...surprise, is not the apartment that was advertised. The photos showed a big bright living room and a bathroom with a huge window and a tub...this place had trash strewn all around it, broken glass on the floor, and things left behind by the last tenant. Instead of the tub, there was a tiny triangular stand-up shower. Instead of the living room with the big windows and a separate bedroom, there was a dark bedroom with a messed up carpet. It looked, in short, like the kind of hotel room that people check into just to off themselves.
"What's your pet policy?" I ask. He laughs again.
"People in this place have pets." He says. "I won't tell if you won't. The landlords never come up here." (OH that sure inspires confidence.)
In a word, YUCK. The whole experience was so disappointing. I had crafted a virtual palace in my head, and it was nowhere near that. The interior of the complex sucked and was creepy as hell, but if the place had had a living room as promised (and windows on more than just one side of the house!) I MIGHT have considered it, even though the landlord sounds shitty. As it stands, BOOO. Back to the drawing board.