BoxGetting even — landlord retaliation

Nelda Schulte
5 min readOct 31, 2022

Getting even- landlord retaliation; when you were a tenant, did you ever experience it? If so, I’ll be no matter how many years it was in your history, it still stings.

When my husband and I moved to Calgary 8 years ago for new jobs, we opted to rent for a year before deciding to buy.

The condo we rented was built in the 1980s and, although dated, had ample space, a lovely loft area, heaps of light, a heated underground parkade, and was close to my husband’s work and it was reasonably priced. It seemed like a good fit.

I filled in an application, paid the security deposit and the 1st month’s rent, and moved in. Our landlord didn’t run a credit report or check employment or landlord references. During the move-in inspection, he was defensive and angry about any items I noted. Those were clues to his level of professionalism.

We were great tenants. We always paid early, kept the property spotlessly clean and contributed to the community by helping our aging condo neighbours carry groceries to their units and decorating the lobby for special events and holidays. The board kept asking us to join.

Throughout our tenancy, we had multiple issues with the 25-year-old toilets. I’d call the landlord, who would show up in a three-piece suit with a toolbox, ask me for a piece of fruit, cut slices off and flush them down the toilet. After a few minutes of doing his fruit-flushing trick, he’d proudly declare, “fixed!”.

After the 3rd or 4th visit, he broke down and called a real plumber who told him to replace the 25-year-old toilets because they were beyond their best-before date and couldn’t be repaired. The landlord was furious and shouted that I was costing him too much money and that if I had any other issues with maintenance, I could find someplace else to live.

A month before our lease expired, he sent a lease renewal with a price increase of $250/month. Obviously, in retaliation for “costing him too much money.” He was within his legal boundaries in Alberta, where there is no limit on the amount a landlord can raise the rent.

After reading the email, I told my husband we are not giving that &^%$! Another dime! We didn’t stay.

Nelda Schulte

Nelda Schulte is a freelance writer based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada who specializes in real estate.