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…this is not a post about the Broadway show Rent, but rather a post about my apartment rent.

For seven out of the eight years that I’ve lived in Philadelphia, my habitation has been within this apartment building.

When I first moved in I had a studio apartment on a lower floor and my rent was less than $600.00 a month (heat included). A year later I moved to the same size studio on the 21st floor, but before signing the lease I asked for a two year lease with no rent increase. They gave it to me. So for the next two years I paid exactly the same. In the years that followed, the apartment company raised my rent anywhere from $25-$35.

However, last year during the beginnings of the economy crunch, the greedy little heathens tried to raise my rent $50.00. I immediately went down to the leasing office and reminded them that I had been living here for seven years and was a good tenant who paid the rent on time and took impeccable care of their property. And after a strong persuasion and a fake-threat to vacate, they decreased my increase to $35.00.

*Because as Joan Crawford would say….“Don‘t FUCK with me fellas!”

There are pros and cons to living in my area of the city. On one hand it’s incredibly convenient. I’m a short walk away from work and I’m close to all public transportation and shopping. Also, for east coast city living, my rent is still very reasonable.

On the other hand it’s incredibly noisy because the area is congested with nothing by bars and restaurants, so it always sounds like there’s a party going on. My building is also occupied by a large percentage of rowdy college students, so sometimes it closely resembles scenes from the movie Animal House.

Life is not always nirvana. So you must weigh the positives against the negatives and decide which is more important. Right now, for me, it’s the convenience and reasonable rent.


…since my renewal was coming up again I was curious to find out how much my apartment was going to increase this year, so a few weeks ago I went down to the leasing office and asked them. I was told that the increase would probably be no more than $20-$25.

(the word probably made me a little leery)

Once again I reminded the new property manager about my longevity as a tenant and was hoping they would take that into consideration.

Last Thursday I found the renewal lease in my mailbox and was very apprehensive about opening it. I had had a very long week at work and was not in the mood to see that my rent had been increased by an amount that I was going to have to haggle with.

So I place the unopened envelope on my desk and decided that I wouldn’t open it until Monday morning.

(why deal with something today when you can just as easily procrastinate?)

First thing Monday morning, I made myself a cup of coffee. And after I had a nice peaceful caffeine buzz going on I walked over to my desk, opened the envelope, closed my eyes, and then very slowly opened them so I could see the bad news.

I was shvitzing!

But guess what?

They decided NOT to increase my rent at all.

All my love,

Joan Crawford


  1. You did your Chippendale number for them, didn't you?

  2. No More Wire Hangers!!!!!!!!!!!!! i don't know how you kept from opening that damn envelope ... I would have been stark raving mad...and that's not a far leap from where I am now. Well done my friend...don't fuck with Joan...she's a bitch in stilletos :) Aloha

  3. Hey Ronnie,

    Bonjour ! Yes; do your happy dance; no increase !! I think that the management should be happy to have correct peeps like you.Not everyone takes care of their spot and is on time and correct.
    A real diamond :)

    On the otherhand...
    The dirty and rowdy ones around you, should get the increase for all the hastle they cause the neighbors.I bet that they don't pick up their beer cans & bottles and leave junk all over.

    Well summer is here so... aren't those kids going home or somewhere else??

    You take it easy my Philly buddy.

  4. Way to go, Joan!!!!!


  5. Wow, you mean somebody out there actually understands that with the way the economy is right now, cutting people a deal may work to their advantage? Not only that, but it's the right thing to do?

    Good for them!

    And good for you!!!

  6. Congrats, Ron. Of course, you'll now be the last level of priority when the toilet overflows or the heating pipe explodes. But other than the occasional emergency, it's still a nice cost savings.

  7. Aloha Debi!

    HOLY did you guess????

    (I didn't want to mention that)

    However, the only catch is that now it's written in my lease that I have to strip for the leasing company once a month FREE OF CHARGE!!!

    *but I'm still hoping to get a few tips!


    Thanks for stopping by Deb!

    Let me know when you get those elephant trunk g-strings made, ok?


  8. Aloha Thom!


    It's funny, because I put the envelope under a stack of papers so I won't have to SEE it all weekend. I pretended that it wasn't even there until Monday morning!

    *I'm such a good pretender!


    And that's right, baby....

    ...I'm a BITCH in stilletos, so don't fuck with me!


    Always great seeing ya, Thom!

    Thanks for stopping by bud!

    Enjoy your day!

  9. Bonjour Barbara!

    Thanks my friend...I totally agree!!

    OMG...and I didn't even want to mention in this post how some of the college students distroy this building. Last fall, the tenants on the 25th floor were THROWING beer bottles out their windows. Some of them also enjoy writing on the walls of the elevators with magic markers and management NEVER says anything about it.


    That's right, that it's summer they've all vacated the building.


    *I've got the next two months in peace.

    Thanks for stopping by, my Philly buddy!

    Enjoy your day!

  10. Hiya Mel!

    I think Joan Crawford secretly still lives inside me!

    *it's that little voice that screams..."NO WAY, FELLAS!!!"

    Happy dance...happy dance!!!!

    Great seeing ya, dear lady!

    Thanks for dropping by!

    Happy Wednesday!


  11. Howdy Jeff!


    Cutting people a deal may work to their advantage.

    I think what it is, is that they can see how they're quickly loosing tenants because of the economy, so they finally woke up.

    Honestly, I was shocked when I saw my renewal lease. But pleasantly ECSTATIC!!!


    Thanks for stopping by, buddy!

    Always a pleasure seeing ya!

    Enjoy your day!

  12. Hey MVD!

    That's nothing new...

    ...because I'm ALWAYS the last level of priority when the toilet overflows or the heating pipe explodes!


    It took maintenance TWO months to finally fix a broken window in my apartment. I had to prop it open with a BOOK!

    Thanks for stopping by, bud!

    Have a great day!

  13. Well that's great Ron but very unsual! They obviously don't want to upset you and have you leave. :)

  14. That's HAPPY news, Ron!!! Great on ya! In San Diego, there is no rent control. I moved into my 1bedroom apt just right UNDER the flight path for the SD airport at a measely 490 dollars/month back in 96. I thought that was a good price for a small apt.
    They started raising my rent little by little each year - the last frew years by 75 - 125 dollars per year so by the time I was given a "kindly" 30 day notice to vacate the premises after 10 years of being a model tenant, I was paying 975 dollars/month with NO changes or imrovements to the premises since I moved in 10 years ealier. I moved out and found a place across the stret (luckily) with the same owner and they had a "family member" (VERY SKETCHY) move in but managed to totally RE DO the entire apt like NEW and then surprisingly the "family member" moved out shortly after that and the newly done apt went up for rent-- I'm still a bit bitter as it was right after my mom passed, right after my severe back injury and just 6 months before I moved to France so it was literally a "PAIN" to move only to really move - months later!! Enough venting, but I thought I'd do so here since you wrote about rent-- hehehehehe!
    I'm really glad they decided NOT to raise your rent!
    Hugs from Budapest;

  15. Yeah and Yippee!!! :) I know that my rent won't go up again for maybe a year (I signed an 18 month lease) but it's still a stretch with everything ELSE going up? (Gas is, again, over $3/gallon. FOR GOD'S SAKE, WHY??? LOL

    I'm currently housing a daughter and her new son. I actually pray, at times, that she will be the one who'll get a HUGE pay raise so she can afford her own place soon. I think if she did, I would rent out the rooms and make some money to help out. (My son moved out last May, just in time for my grandson to need his own 'space').

    Funny thing here is, what I'm paying now is still a bargain compared to other places.

    So I'll continue to have faith that things will all work out. Just like they have with you :)

  16. That's great news! I was on both sides of the table. I rented for years and I was an apartment property manager. I knew the logic behind the rent increase but that was only for other people. Not me!

    BTW, I just saw you movie recommendation. Grey Gardens. I rented it as a fluke and LOVED it. Each time, I noticed something new.

    I just heard that HBO did a remake with Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange. I don't have HBO so I'll wait for the video. SUCH a facsinating documentary. I mad everyone that came over watch it.

  17. Damn! You found a landlord with a heart and a brain. Lucky man! You always could have beat the shit out of them with wire hangers if they raised it too much.

    I'm lovin' that dancing cat. ;)

  18. Hi Akelamalu!

    With the economy the way that it is, I think they would rather any of the longstanding tenants stay on for another year, rather than lose them to a rent increase.

    For whatever reason...

    ...I'm VERY grateful!!

    Thanks for stopping by, m' dear!

    Hope you had a wonderful day!

  19. Bonjour Leesa!

    You're in Budapest???

    HOW FAAAABULOUS! Thank you so much for taking the time to stop by and say HI!

    OMG...your apartment story sound like a nightmare. So sorry you had to go through all that. Especially considering what else you were going through at the time.

    We don't have rent control here in Philly either. I think NYC has it though. At least they did when I lived there.

    You've no idea how surprised and happy I was to see that my rent did not increase. I went down to the leasing office and gave them a huge THANK YOU!!!

    Hope you're having a wonderful time in Budapest. I bet your photos are spectacular. Aren't you going to California soon? I think you said July.

    Great seeing ya, Leesa!

    Thanks again for dropping by!


  20. Howdy Grace!

    What a wonderful surprise!!!

    It's so great seeing ya!

    Are you back blogging again?

    I so know what you mean about things going up and up and up in price. Honestly, I live paycheck to paycheck and for some reason it all seems to work out that I have what I need to pay my bills on time and live comfortably.

    Thank God!

    I don't have a lot of extra expense though, such as cell phones or cable, and only one charge card that I try to use only for emergencies, so that helps.

    Me too...what I'm paying now in rent is still a bargain compared to other places. I have a friend who also lives in a studio that's much more than mine, and has to pay for gas and water!

    That's right, Grace...keep the faith, because it WILL work out.

    Thanks again for stopping by!

    You made my day!


  21. Hiya Chrissy!

    GREAT seeing ya, girl!

    I was going to stop by this evening and leave a comment on your blog to see how you were doing. Hope all is well with Bernie.

    OMG...did you not LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, Grey Gardens????? A friend at work lent me the video last week and I ended up watching it TWICE! And like you, I also saw things I hadn't seen before.

    Fascinating documentary!!

    Yes, I heard about the movie with Jessica Lange and Drew Barrymore (who I love both) and was going to look for the DVD in the video store. But I guess it's not out yet?

    SEE!!! You and I even have the same taste in movies!!!

    A girl that I went to acting school in NYC (Christine Ebersole) played the lead in the Broadway version of Grey Gardens and I never got to see it...DRATS!

    Thanks for stopping by, Chrissy!

    Enjoy your evening!

  22. Hiya Nitebyrd! have NO IDEA how HAPPY I was to see the same rent amount in the new lease that said, "Next Years Rent."

    I was shvitzing!

    And I was also happy that I didn't have to take the wires hangers out of my closet to make a threat!


    Hey, thanks for lovin' the dancing cat, because when I saw it online I screamed!

    It's he/she cute?


    Always great seeing ya, Sis!

    Thanks for dropping by!

    All my love,

  23. Ronnie: kill me baby.

    I can see you are someone not to be taken lightly.

    If they try to raise your rent...go to the office and in your hand you carry a WIRE HANGER!

    Those bitches look like they hurt like hell. Remember to wear a wig and white cream on your face...that will make them drop your rent instead of increasing it.

    Don't fuck with me boys...hahaha. Joan Crawford rocked.

    Mildred Pierce was a good movie too. I just recently saw it on Ted Turner television.

    later my friend. (((mwuah)))

    I loved your post.

  24. As a Property Manager of an apartment community I should not comment due to a "conflict of interest" but I will....It is very common right now due to the state of the economy that there are very low rent increases, like 2% to no increase at all if the current resident is really close or is at new market rent. Glad you did not get a rent increase this year! It's hard out there all over....Let's hope the economy recovers soon, and let's hope you don't get a big increase next year.

  25. Dear Miss Jones...'s so great seeing ya!!

    Your fans miss you!!!!

    Honey, I got those WIRE HANGERS LOADED!!!


    I see that you've seen Mommie Dearest (white cream on her face)!!! Didn't she look totally FREAKED in that scene???

    And yes...I've seen Mildred Pierce and it's probably my favorite Crawford film. She portrayed a very different character than she normally did so it showed her acting ability, plus...I also enjoyed the storyline. FAAAAABULOUS film!

    Thanks SO MUCH for stopping by to say Hi, dear friend.

    I hope you're enjoying your new journey and having the time of your life!

    You go, girl!

    Ciao bella
    X ya!

  26. Hiya Funny Girl!

    Thank you SOOOOOO much for adding your expertise to this post and explaining rent increases to me.

    And I know you're correct, because a friend of mine who also lives in Philly did NOT have a rent increase this year.

    The two of us are delightfully surprised!

    And yes...I'm wondering what they'll do next year when my renewal comes up again.

    Oh, well...I'll just wait and cross my fingers!


    Thanks for stopping by, Funny Girl!

    Enjoy your evening!

  27. Huzzah!

    I tip my hat to you, sir.

  28. Hey Roberto!

    Thanks, bud!

    And I tip mine to you!

    Hope all is well in the retail world!

    Don't ya just LOVE IT????

    Thanks for stopping by!

    Enjoy your evening!


  29. You're so sweet. Thanks for thinking of Bern. The latest blood test shows that she might have Cushing's Disease so I'm leaving her there on Tuesday so they can run some more tests.

  30. Hi again Chrissy!

    You're so welcome. I just LOVE Bern!.

    I had no idea what Cushing's Disease was so I looked it up online. What I read said that it was very treatable.


    Sending good thoughts your way!!

    Have a great day, my friend!

  31. YAY JOAN! You go girl!!

    so glad you are an appreciated tenant and not getting ripped horrible would that be...

  32. Hi Linda!

    OMG...I JUST THIS MINUTE left you a comment on YOUR blog!!!!

    It's so wonderful seeing ya, dear one!!!

    I was so happy to see that you posted!

    Yes...the Joan Crawford in me can come out sometimes and rip a couple assholes!


    I'm SO grateful for the NON-rent increase! I feel blessed!

    Thank you for stopping by, Linda!

    Enjoy you evening!


  33. I confess,
    I was in Philly.
    and i survived,
    THe INSANE drivers , and the OH so friendly people.
    ( the food was fantastic...I so miss good sushi)
    I am happy to hear/read that your rent didn't go up, but if it did i was going to tell you a bout a few signs I saw for places to rent...
    If I ever go back again, I shall endeavor to find you, in the maze of traffic and one way roads...

  34. Hi Lady Sorrow!



    And you didn't contact me????

    *only kidding

    I laughed my ass off when you said the OH so friendly people!!!


    New Yorkers are more friendly!

    Anyway....I'm so glad you had a nice time while you were here. And perhaps we even past each other on the street and didn't even know it!!

    Next time you and I will have a faaabulous visit!

    Love ya, dear Sorrow!

    And thanks for stopping by!