Caution:  rant ahead. What is it with real estate agents? I mean, they’re not popular, are they …? The one that particularly has my goat at the moment is the one that I hand over vast sums of cash to each month so that I can continue to live in a very excellently located yet poorly contrived shoe box.

Two months ago I emailed to let her know that my front door handle is broken, as is the tap for the washing machine. Luckily I can still get in and out of my front door, and the tap is broken in the ‘on’ position, so at least it’s just annoying and not an actual problem. #firstworldproblems

Anyhoo, she got back to me two days later, and it took another two weeks after that to let me know that she had approval for the repairs to go ahead. Then she must have gone to the Bahamas to drink cocktails or something, because a month went by without a peep from a handyman. By now I’m getting a bit shirty so I email her again and another two weeks go by with still no sign of the repairs guy. More emails from me. She replies and gives me his phone number so I can organise it myself. I call him and he says he’ll come at 7:30 the next morning. I don’t go to my morning yoga class so that I can be at the apartment to let him in, but then he calls me at the exact time he’s supposed to be there, to say he won’t be able to make it! He says he called the agent the day before to arrange to get the key so that I don’t have to give him access, but was told that they don’t have a copy of my key.

This I find difficult to believe. The front door lock was replaced twelve months ago by the agent’s locksmith and he told me that he would give a key to them. So I phoned said agent at 9:20am, but she wasn’t in the office. Understandable, I thought, maybe she’s out getting a coffee. So I Ieft a message for her to call me back. By 1:27pm I still hadn’t heard from her so I rang again, but she was on another call. I gave the receptionist the full run down. The agent calls me back a short time later:  this was to be the very first time I have ever spoken with this person since she took over from the previous agent who is apparently now on maternity leave. And she’s got attitude. It seems like I’m really irritating her, with all these demands of mine …

Now, if it were me, and my client/tenant/whatever was getting ropey service, I’d be doing my darndest to make things right. Not getting all uppity and saying things like ‘Well it’s difficult to know about things that happened before I was here’, i.e. the new lock situation a year ago. I suggested that perhaps she could get in touch with the locksmith and he might be able to fill her in. To which she responded ‘Well, I’ll have to look back through all the records and try to find out which locksmith it was.’ Um, yes. To save her the trouble I said I’d email his number to her.

Thank goodness for a cup of fresh mint tea to calm me down. I’m in love with it. If you (or your neighbour, wink wink) has some growing, snip off a full handful, stuff it into a mug, poor on almost-boiling water, wait five minutes then put your feet up and let it do its magic.