A Message from an Apartment Manager Who’s Really Excited to Have You as a Tenant As Long As You’re Not Poor, Orphaned, Estranged from Your Family, A Freelance Worker, or Otherwise *Undesirable*

Dear Prospective Tenant,

Thank you for your interest in renting our 1 bedroom 1 bath apartment at Smoky Pines. We have also received the application of your… partner… and look forward to reviewing her application as well.

First things first, I’d like to make a few things clear. We at Smoky Pines are your friends. Though we lease out low-value, oft-infested apartments at remarkably high prices, and our entire monetary wealth depends on forcing you, wealthless grubs, to pay our monthly mortgages plus some, we have your best interests at heart. This is why we provide you and your new neighbors with a laundry room that charges a mere $1.25 per load, takes three cycles to dry clothes, and permanently smells of mildew and off-brand dryer sheets. This is why we offer four different ways for you to pay us: online payment, check, money order, and, if all else fails, your poverty-blackened soul.

We care. That’s why we charge such high late fees, to make sure you are financially responsible with our—sorry, your—money.

Now, back to your application. It looks like we need a cosigner form from a more reliable source of income—say a parent, sibling, or wealthy friend. Maybe another landlord; we’re rolling in dough, you know. We require that each tenant make at least three times the total monthly rent because you wealthless grubs are just so unreliable. Say you and your… partner… break up. How will you be able to pay the rent on your own? I mean yes, your partner would also still be legally bound to pay the rent, but that doesn’t mean she will. We’re just looking out for your future, you see.

What? Sorry, you said you do make enough money to pay the rent? Oh, sorry. You see, we don’t accept freelance work, tips, gig work, or disability as “income.” We just don’t know what any of those things are.

Wait, your parents DIED? Well, that’s tragic for sure, but not enough for us to let you in without proper financial assurances.

You say you are estranged from the rest of your family because they can’t understand your… partner… and so you cannot request consignment? That’s too bad. But surely you have friends with generous paychecks, right? Oh, their livelihood is also freelancing, service industry work, gigs, and/or disability? Oof. That’s unfortunate. For them and for you, not for us.

What? You say that you, like many others, have not benefited from generational wealth and, like many others, have been relegated to low-wage service industry jobs despite your college degree and list of qualifications? We’re sorry but that just isn’t true. “Generational wealth” is a myth propagated by poor people who are bitter at what they don’t have. These are the same poor people that call our leasing practices discriminatory and inaccessible. You don’t want to be one of those people, do you?

The truth is, every management company in your town has the same requirements. It’s not our fault that you can’t follow them. You should have expected this. You should have found a better job, a better family, or better, wealthier friends. We aren’t a fucking charity, you know. We are a business, a business that exists solely to charge more for housing to those who will never own a home.

And no, you can’t demand references, a history of discrimination complaints, or a summary of our expenses when we deny you your security deposit. It doesn’t work that way. We hold the cards, honey, or in this case, the keys. Get used to it.

Sincerely,
Property Manager
Smoky Pines – Where Your Hopes and Dreams Go Up in Flames

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