Monday, October 5, 2009

A Sign of the Times...

Today, my across-the-hall neighbor got evicted. It was a real-live eviction, which looks a lot like this:

Last month, my other across-the-hall neighbor was also evicted, but her exit wasn't as dramatic as this. She moved out her stuff before the managers did it for her. Those were the third and fourth evictions from my building in the last two months. During normal times, we might have maybe two per year. This is indeed a sign as to how dire the times are, because the Rivoli is one of the cheapest places to rent in all of Belltown. If we're hurting this bad, I can only imagine how the higher end places are doing.

I feel really bad for my neighbor. He's a smart guy and a pretty decent poker player. But he just stopped paying his rent a few months ago and he had fair warning. They posted all kinds of notices on his door, so this wasn't exactly a surprise. I always wonder what becomes of the people who get evicted from here. In the past, almost everybody who got booted was a junkie, but it's different now. These recent evictees are all normal people.

Being a superstitious one-quarter Ukrainian, I'm inclined to believe that the two apartments across the hall are cursed. Someone was murdered in one of them 27 years ago and a curse is in both of them. For some reason, after a few months in those apartments, people just don't pay rent. It's happened over and over again. I count five evictions in those two units in the past five years. So yeah, a curse would explain it. But that doesn't make me feel any less sorry for my neighbors' plight.

1 comment:

Belltown Jeff said...

That's sad, I feel for your neighbor having to experience this.

On the higher-end comment: I am really amazed talking to co-workers that there is a huge gap between what people are paying to lease in Belltown now - all sorts of luxury condos (lease from owner) and luxury apartments.

The condo renters are winning in this economy, big time: same costs as apartments, but better construction in some cases, a lot more utilities included, and less frat factor with the younger folks.

Yet some people are still paying 2007 rents, while their neighbors are leasing at the-economic-times-we-live-in-rates.

At night you can see ROWS of empty apartments throughout all of downtown Seattle - both the commercial and the residential stuff.

Entire floors of office buildings downtown (not really Belltown, no office towers that aren't tinted) are 100% empty, without even a desk or chair to be seen!