Useful You-Tube!

You-tube, as a Landlady – I love you, and here is why:

Nobody can be good at everything.

I count myself as someone who isn’t an expert at anything (apart from maybe Harry Potter book knowledge), but I’m okay at quite a few things, including DIY.

I can use a drill, saw, sand, hammer, paint, etc.
But there are a lot of gaps in my skills.

My 2 biggest issues with a New Rental :

When someone moves in, there are lots of things that need to go smoothly, and lots of potential for teething problems.
In my 4 tenancies so far… there have been consistent problems with 2 things:
Heating & Hot Water – how it works!?
How do you get furniture into the Front room?

Heating & Hot Water
My plumbing knowledge leaves a lot to be desired, partly as I have very little natural interest in the subject. The view I would like to have is ‘As long as it works, I do not care or need to know how‘. However, as a Landlady/Landlord, there is not a lot more embarrassing than not being able to describe how to operate the heating & hot water on, in your own house. I have been in that situation, it’s not fun, and it is really important to tenants that these things work. Of course.
My heating system is quite complicated – In the past I have even called a plumber out simply to explain the system to me again, having forgotten since the last time I had to explain it.
I didn’t want to do that this time – so I put in some in some extra research and basically, in a nutshell, You-Tube came to the rescue.

The offending controller
Annoying instructions
Lovely and clear video-tutorial.

Not only does a You-Tube video jolt my memory, but a link to it is simply the only thing I have to provide to my tenant when she had a query about the time settings for hot water and how to reprogram them. AMAZING!

Furniture into the Front room.

Every time someone moves in / or out, there is the same issue. It is physically impossible to get a normal sofa into the living room, without removing the sash window. This is due to a combination of a small hallway, and a ‘quaint’ but wildly impractical door choice by a former owner.
The window isn’t large either but it does just about get a sofa through, thank god!

Tiny Gothic Door.
The middle window needs to come out.

Removing a sash window is not for the faint hearted. Not only does it contain a lot of breakable glass, but they are heavy things, hung on strings/cords, and parts of the woodwork also need to be unscrewed or levered off and re-caulked back in.
I cannot do this. I can’t even explain to someone how its done.
But this man can!…. My gratitude to him is without bounds (or cords).

Again, all I had to do is provide the link, and now my tenant has her sofa set in the front room, and her boyfriend thinks he is the master of DIY and sash window removal!
Everyone is happy, moving in is successful, and I somehow come off like I know what I’m doing.

Thanks to You-tube for existing to enable these DIY heroes… and a never ending supply of funny cat videos!

T.G.L

(the Grateful Landlady)

I wasn’t going to post today, but…

This is what is happening:

Crikey! President Trump is giving an enormously long and pompous, self-congratulatory press conference right now!

He really is a bit of a Twit!

My local Waitrose had a 20minute queue outside.

I planned to pop in for essentials, but came out £100 poorer – why does this always happen in Waitrose?!

I stopped over at my Aunts house – she died on 31st March, 2020 (not from the virus).
It was very strange being in her home without her there. Her funeral service, with 3 in attendance is on Thursday.

Not a busy day, but it has felt eventful.

Thanks for reading, and “Stay Safe”!

T.G.L

(the Grateful Landlady)

Easter, in a time of Coronavirus

I am Celebrating in Isolation!

Until last month, I had been suffering from a major and drawn out ‘episode’ of severe depression.
Episode seems too short a descriptive. It was like a box set, that just went on and on and on, with each season bringing absolutely no change and nothing new.

Consequently, celebrating has not been on the agenda, however much a small voice inside has begged and pleaded to know why the indefinable ‘magic’ of the universe and being alive, just wasn’t there anymore for me.

Persuading myself to go outside in spring/summer?
No enjoyment of seasons at all.
Finished a gruelling task? Emotionally … nothing, zip. No satisfaction whatsoever.
Birthdays? Nothing. Apart from more disappointment that I am older still, and still ill.
Easter? I did not even notice it last year – did it happen?
Christmas? For two years, it just didn’t come ‘feeling-wise’ for me.
Btw I actually really love Christmas, and am normally a person who feels the ‘magic’ building from Autumn on. I love the songs, movies, wrapping presents, trees and foliage, and all the decorations!

My spirits lifted quite quickly at the end of February, and I have been tentatively stepping forward since then. Trying to make progress, but not too fast. Fast is dangerous for me, as I can swing from depressed to manic, which then becomes very intense for everyone else.

Easter 2020

This weekend has been a bit of marker in my recovery. The follow events are the big milestones that happened.

  1. On Good Friday, I handed over my rental property to new tenants and that has gone very smoothly so far. They seem lovely, and also capable.
  2. In the last week, I have been slowly reconnecting with the friends from whom I have basically been ‘distancing’ myself from since I fell ill. We had a group Zoom call on Saturday, which was really fun, and has also left me with a kind of warm fuzzy feeling that is still present. I think its called ‘re-connection’!
  3. On Easter Sunday, I spent a few hours being ‘crafty’. Painting eggs for an Easter tree is something my sister and I used to do as kids, and only occasionally since. It has been ‘work’, but overall incredibly satisfying as its creative, produces an end result, sense of achievement and also is very festive. My home feels cosy, loved, and very Easter-y.

I am not sure of my plans for Easter Monday, but, I can guarantee I will be Staying at Home. Probably taking it easy and pottering around the house and garden. Watching a bit of TV or a film maybe. Or reading stuff on WordPress, and (a limited amount of) scrolling on social media.

All I can say, again, is how incredibly grateful I am for everything.
All the above events, my friends, my family, my houses, my cat, the technology that connects people at this strange time, and of course my returning health.

My heart feels very full of love and happiness this Easter. I would like to ‘beam’ this love out to everyone I know and anyone reading, especially those that may be in need of it!

T.G.L

(the Grateful Landlady)