Her husband inherited a property from his father 11 years ago. For five years, her husband has been renting the house to a lovely family with a young 5-year-old child. They've been great tenants, and there haven't been any issues.
A month ago, her husband was approached by a realtor about selling his property. Because of the location, the realtor had an interested buyer ready to offer $60,000 over the market. This was an opportunity he couldn't pass up.
His tenants have a lease through mid-March and have always renewed every year around this time. So he contacted the tenant, Michael, and let him know there would be no renewal this time. Michael was distraught. It turns out that Michael and his wife are currently in hospice with their son, who has a terminal heart condition.
The doctors have given their son a month or two to live. Her husband knew the boy was sick but never knew it was so severe.
Michael told her husband there was no way they could pack up the house and find a new rental in time. The hospice where they reside is over three hours away, and he thinks it's terribly unfair that her husband expects them to sacrifice any of the time they have left with their son to move.
Michael called her husband a heartless sociopath. Her husband suggested they have a family member take care of the packing and finding a new place. But, the only family they have around is the wife's elderly father (her husband doesn't believe this because he thinks they're too young to only have one parent between them, and he believes there're siblings somewhere).
Her husband suggest to Michael that they hire a moving company to handle the packing and try to find a rental online or possibly an Airbnb for a while. Michael claims he can't afford a moving company because of his son's medical expenses.
Her husband feels terrible about the situation and realizes he's making things harder for them but thinks it's not his responsibility to take care of them. He has given them the legally required notice. She feels that because of the money her husband will be making, he should offer to pay for a moving company and an Airbnb after they leave the hospice.
But her husband doesn't want to do this because he says it would cost him a big chunk of the profit from selling the house. He reiterated that their situation is not his responsibility.
According to him, this is the risk people take when they rent. She was not happy and gave him the cold shoulder. The purchase agreement has been signed. Her husband is not selling to a developer but to a family that needs to move to the area for their son's schooling. He's offered to call the buyer and explain the situation, and then, if they choose, they can contact the tenants and make arrangements.
Still, leaving his former tenant at the mercy of the new owners doesn't make him a good landlord, according to some Redditors who joined the conversation. Others think that while it would be difficult to pass up on 60k unless they are ultra-rich, practically helping the family in any way could have given his tennants a soft landing.
HairyEarphone said, “You're well within your right to sell your house. You don't have a personal relationship with this family. You said you didn't know the situation before telling them you were selling. Yes of course it's horrible that they're in this situation, I wholeheartedly get that. But you're under no obligation to put yourself out of pocket for that.
You could extend help by compiling a list of available properties nearby to ease some of the strain on them. Of course it's heartbreaking for those parents, I can't imagine what they're going through. Not everyone has money to fork out like that. Yes I get its an inherited house, but you don't know her husband's financial situation either.
That 20k that could be used to help this family could be needed for house payments, a child's college, whatever.”
Deaddlikelatin says “I know it's human nature to be greedy, but I think this is one of those times you ought to fight back against your human nature in the interest of helping out someone who could really really use it. If they get their way, you're met with an inconvenience. If you get your way, they're met with life-altering events.
You hold a lot of power over them right now. Use it wisely.”
What do you think, did her husband do anything wrong?
Did the tenants her husband had known for years merit compassion, understanding, and basic respect? Or was he right to keep his feelings out of business?
You can read the original story on Reddit here.
This article was produced and syndicated on Wealth of Geeks.