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A washing machine and a dishwasher | Source: Flickr/markhillary/CC BY 2.0 & Flickr/OroAnnM/CC BY 2.0)
A washing machine and a dishwasher | Source: Flickr/markhillary/CC BY 2.0 & Flickr/OroAnnM/CC BY 2.0)

My Entitled Ex-landlord Refuses to Return a Washing Machine and Dishwasher I Bought — I Taught Him a Good Lesson

Sonali Bharadwaj
Jun 10, 2024
05:16 A.M.

When Paige moved into her old apartment, she instantly noticed the lack of a washing machine and dishwasher. She decided to buy her own appliances, thinking it was a simple solution. But when she tried to take them with her upon moving out, her entitled ex-landlord refused to let her go without a fight, not knowing she had a lesson in store for him.

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A young woman carrying carton boxes | Source: Pexels

A young woman carrying carton boxes | Source: Pexels

At 25, getting my own place was a breath of fresh air, especially after living under the thumb of Mr. Grady, my old landlord, for a year. Let me tell you, it's quite the story.

Hello, I'm Paige.

So, my old apartment didn't have a washing machine or a dishwasher. When I first saw the place, Mr. Grady was there to greet me. He had this smug look on his face like he was doing me a huge favor by renting it out.

Interior of an old house | Source: Pexels

Interior of an old house | Source: Pexels

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"Welcome, Paige," Mr. Grady said, smiling. "You're going to love it here. It's a great neighborhood."

Let me tell you there was enough room for one person, but the place clearly showed its age with paint peeling off the walls and old, tattered furniture. It also seemed like the apartment hadn't been cleaned in weeks.

I looked around the kitchen and noticed the missing appliances right away.

Inside a cozy kitchen | Source: Pexels

Inside a cozy kitchen | Source: Pexels

"We don't have a washing machine or dishwasher?" I asked.

Mr. Grady shrugged. "Most tenants don't mind. You can always use the laundromat down the street," he said.

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"But it's so inconvenient. I work late nights and weekends. A washing machine and dishwasher would save me so much time," I replied, frowning a little.

A laundromat | Source: Pexels

A laundromat | Source: Pexels

He gave a dismissive wave. "Well, this isn't a luxury condo, but it's the best for what you can afford. Besides, you'll get used to the laundromat. It's not so bad."

Clearly, there was no point arguing with this man. I nodded but thought to myself, I'm not spending hours at the laundromat every week or tackling the dishes when work barely gives me time.

So, after moving in, I decided to buy my own washing machine and dishwasher. It took a big chunk of my savings and some late-night waitressing shifts, but it was worth it.

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A person using a washing machine | Source: Pexels

A person using a washing machine | Source: Pexels

A few days later, Mr. Grady came by to check on things.

"Everything okay?" he asked, peering into the kitchen.

"Yep," I replied. "Just wanted to let you know I bought a washing machine and dishwasher."

A young woman using a dishwasher | Source: Pexels

A young woman using a dishwasher | Source: Pexels

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His eyebrows shot up. "Oh, really? Well, make sure you take good care of them."

"Don't worry, I will," I said, smiling.

"Looks like you must have spent a lot on those," he further said, eyeing the appliances, and I felt really weird at that point.

An elderly man | Source: Pexels

An elderly man | Source: Pexels

"Yeah, I did," I admitted. "But it's worth it. Saves me so much time and effort."

He nodded slowly. "Well, I hope you enjoy them. Just remember, they're your responsibility."

"Of course," I said, still smiling, but I couldn't shake the feeling that he wasn't too happy about my new additions.

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A confused young woman | Source: Pexels

A confused young woman | Source: Pexels

Fast forward one month. I found a better apartment closer to work and gave Mr. Grady the required notice. The moving day finally came, and I started removing my washing machine and dishwasher.

As I was unplugging the washing machine, Mr. Grady barged in.

"Where do you think you're going with those?" he demanded. "They belong to the apartment now."

An elderly man looking serious | Source: Pexels

An elderly man looking serious | Source: Pexels

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I stood up, hands on my hips. "Excuse me? I bought them with my own money. They're mine," I argued.

"No, they've been here long enough. They're part of the apartment now! If you take them, I'll deduct the cost from your security deposit."

I couldn't believe what I was hearing. "You can't do that. They're my appliances. I even told you when I bought them!" I said helplessly.

A frustrated young woman | Source: Pexels

A frustrated young woman | Source: Pexels

But Mr. Grady wouldn't listen.

"I'll still deduct the cost. Good luck arguing otherwise!" he threatened me.

Frustration bubbled up inside me. "Fine!" I yelled, losing my cool. "If you're so adamant, I'll get a lawyer to sort this out."

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He started to laugh. "You? A stupid waitress?" he sneered. "We'll see about that."

An elderly man laughing | Source: Pexels

An elderly man laughing | Source: Pexels

I was furious at how he just dismissed me. Deep down, I knew I couldn't afford a lawyer, but I wasn't going to let him bully me. I needed to find a way to stand up for myself and keep what was rightfully mine.

The next day, I called my friend, Kevin, a handyman.

"Can you believe it?" I said. "Mr. Grady thinks he can just take my appliances and get away with it."

A young woman on call | Source: Pexels

A young woman on call | Source: Pexels

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Kevin sighed. "That guy is unbelievable. Don't worry, Paige. Actually... I have an idea."

"Okay, but when can you come over?" I asked.

"I can be there in an hour," Kevin replied. "We'll sort this out."

A young guy busy working | Source: Pexels

A young guy busy working | Source: Pexels

When Kevin arrived at my apartment, we quickly got to work. Mr. Grady was out, which was perfect for our plan. Kevin and I started disconnecting the washing machine and dishwasher.

"Let's take out the power cords and hoses first," Kevin suggested. "We'll remove the essential parts and leave the shells behind. It'll look like they're still there, but they won't work."

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"Great idea. Let's do it," I said, nodding.

A washing machine under a wooden table with a plant and a wicker basket | Source: Pexels

A washing machine under a wooden table with a plant and a wicker basket | Source: Pexels

As we worked, Kevin asked, "So, what exactly did Mr. Grady say?"

When I told him everything that had happened, Kevin shook his head and laughed.

"That's classic Robinson," he admitted. "Heard from my friends he's like that with every tenant. Always trying to get more than he deserves. But he's in for a real lesson this time."

A box labeled fragile | Source: Pexels

A box labeled fragile | Source: Pexels

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We carefully removed all the essential parts from both appliances. Kevin showed me how to do it, and I followed his instructions. It didn't take long before we had everything we needed.

"Perfect," Kevin said, standing back to admire our work.

I grinned. "Mr. Grady is going to be in for a surprise."

Two people sharing a high-five | Source: Pexels

Two people sharing a high-five | Source: Pexels

Kevin chuckled. "Yep! But he's not going to know what hit him until it's too late."

We packed up the parts and left the apartment. As we walked out, I was thinking about what Mr. Grady would look like once he noticed our little gift for him.

"Do you think he'll figure it out right away?" I asked Kevin.

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Two friends | Source: Pexels

Two friends | Source: Pexels

"Probably not," Kevin replied. "He's too focused on getting his way to notice the details."

But just two days later, while I was settling into my new apartment, my phone rang. It was Mr. Grady.

I knew why he was calling and took a deep breath before answering. "Hello?"

"Please, DON'T DO THIS!" he begged. "I'll never find the parts, and I need those appliances to work for the new tenants, Paige!"

A sad elderly man | Source: Pexels

A sad elderly man | Source: Pexels

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I decided to play dumb. "I don't know what you're talking about, Mr. Grady. I just took what was mine."

"You have to come back and fix this!" he pleaded. "I'll give you your security deposit back!"

I smiled and decided to let him know that I was the one who had taken the parts. But I didn't agree to his offer right away. I told him I'd think about it and hung up. A few hours later, my phone rang again.

This time, Mr. Grady was practically in tears.

A depressed man | Source: Pexels

A depressed man | Source: Pexels

"I'll return your full security deposit and give you an additional $200 for the inconvenience," he offered. "Just come as soon as you can and give me those parts. Or, I'll lose a good deal."

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I pretended to hesitate. "Okay, I'll meet you at the apartment," I said.

When I arrived, Mr. Grady was waiting anxiously. I had a box with all the parts, but I made sure he handed me the cash first. He looked relieved as he took the box from me.

A man holding cash | Source: Pexels

A man holding cash | Source: Pexels

"Thank you, Paige," he said, opening the box. But the moment he saw the contents, his face fell.

"This isn't everything!" he exclaimed. "Where are the power cords?"

I shrugged. "Oh, I must have misplaced those. I'll have to look for them. Maybe in a week or two?"

"You can't do this!" Mr. Grady's face turned red with frustration.

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An elderly man with a serious look | Source: Pexels

An elderly man with a serious look | Source: Pexels

I looked him straight in the eye. "Remember, Mr. Grady, you tried to take my things first. Consider this a lesson from a 'stupid waitress' in respecting other people's property."

He stood there, speechless, as I turned and walked out, feeling victorious. Mr. Grady would have to scramble to replace the parts, which would cost him more than if he had just let me take my appliances.

He had learned his lesson. But that wasn't all.

A young woman holding a file | Source: Pexels

A young woman holding a file | Source: Pexels

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Later that evening, I met up with Kevin to thank him. We spent the evening reminiscing about the whole ordeal, laughing at the absurdity of Mr. Grady's actions.

"Can you believe he actually thought he could keep your appliances?" Kevin said, shaking his head.

"I know, right?" I replied. "It feels good to have stood up to him and won."

Kevin nodded. "Well, you did great. Here's to your new apartment and no more Mr. Grady!"

We clinked our glasses and toasted to new beginnings, feeling triumphant and ready for whatever came next.

Two people toasting to new beginnings | Source: Pexels

Two people toasting to new beginnings | Source: Pexels

Always remember that respecting other people's property is important, no matter who they are.

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What would you have done?

If you enjoyed this story, here's another one: When Carina's parents kicked her out after high school, she had no choice but to navigate her way around life.

Years later, after making a success of her life, and her wedding is around the corner, she reaches out to them, only for them to storm into her life, trying to take ownership of what she has worked so hard for.

A woman walking away with her suitcase | Source: Pexels

A woman walking away with her suitcase | Source: Pexels

This work is inspired by real events and people, but it has been fictionalized for creative purposes. Names, characters, and details have been changed to protect privacy and enhance the narrative. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental and not intended by the author.

The author and publisher make no claims to the accuracy of events or the portrayal of characters and are not liable for any misinterpretation. This story is provided "as is," and any opinions expressed are those of the characters and do not reflect the views of the author or publisher.

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