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Am I being mean or is it reasonable to find this frightening?

(36 Posts)
EoinMcLovesCakeJumper Fri 15-Nov-19 20:38:12

I genuinely don't know if I'm being precious/mean here or if this is reasonable. Will try to explain the circumstances as fully as possible to avoid drip feeding.

I live alone in a flat I own. There are other flats in the same building and a communal hallway, with a door that is supposed to have a lock on it, but which is currently broken. My own flat has a lockable door obviously.

About three or four years ago there was a guy in one of the other flats who was a complete nightmare - ear-splitting music at all hours, people running up and down the stairs all night to buy drugs from him, vandalism, all sorts. I even had one of his friends making meowing noises through my letterbox once. Frankly, it scared the shit out of me, and when he was eventually evicted for not paying any rent, I couldn't have been more relieved.

Just recently, one of this guy's old friends has started wandering into the building at odd times and using the communal hallway to sleep in. He folds up my doormat and uses it as a pillow and everything! He is always pissed or stoned or something, he always brings tins of lager in with him and leaves remnants of food all over the carpet. The first time I discovered him, he mumbled something about how the nightmare neighbour had said he could crash there, but when I told him that he didn't live there any more, he did eventually leave. Fine. But this man is obviously homeless, because he keeps coming back. And on the latest occasion, he refused to leave and I ended up calling the police when he became verbally abusive towards me.

On the one hand, I felt mean because it was raining and he obviously didn't have anywhere else to go. I do empathise with that. But at the same time, I live on my own and I am frightened of this guy. When he's out there I can hear him muttering to himself on the other side of my door. I don't want to go out because I don't want him to know then that my flat is empty.

Technically, he isn't doing any harm, other than leaving a mess and scaring me. Obviously at some point I will have to get the lock fixed but I can't afford to at the moment. Do I overlook this on the basis that I am more fortunate than he is and he isn't taking anything from me by being there? I feel a bit like the residents of those posh flats with studded pavements outside designed to deter rough sleepers...

fascinated Fri 15-Nov-19 20:40:06

Call the police. It’s not on. I sympathise.

If you feel bad donate to a homeless shelter .

Yanbu.

FlamingoAndJohn Fri 15-Nov-19 20:41:29

Have you spoken to any other residents of the flats?

What about the freeholder/factor/landlord? They should be getting the door fixed regardless.

brighteyeowl17 Fri 15-Nov-19 20:42:26

Can you not get building maintenance to fix the lock?

19lottie82 Fri 15-Nov-19 20:44:25

Of course you’re not mean. Call the police every time he appears.

SaveTheTreesPlease Fri 15-Nov-19 20:46:39

Fuck no, YANBU at all, esp as he was verbally abusive towards you! I’d definitely be calling the police.

QuantamBaby Fri 15-Nov-19 20:47:14

You are not being unreasonable to value your own personal safety!!!! Make getting the lock fixed a real priority - badger whoever needs to get it sorted!

You are not responsible for drunk stoned homeless men...

MrsCasares Fri 15-Nov-19 20:48:40

Absolutely your not being mean. He was verbally aggressive to you. Why should you tolerate that in your own building.

Do you pay a community management charge? If you have a managing agent they should fix the lock pdq.

Waveysnail Fri 15-Nov-19 20:49:49

Call police and complain a lot to however responsible for fixing broken door

Joerev Fri 15-Nov-19 20:50:21

I work with the homeless. I would be calling the police. It’s not on. Yes they would like w roof over their heads. But many of them realise this isn’t always available. He’s probably highly dependent on drugs or alcohol sadly.

Raspberrytruffle Fri 15-Nov-19 20:50:51

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Ohyesiam Fri 15-Nov-19 20:54:13

I can see why you feel mean, but it’s not like a little whim, you don’t feel safe. You need to feel safe on your home.
Whose responsibility is the lock?

EoinMcLovesCakeJumper Fri 15-Nov-19 20:54:48

Phew. I was really starting to doubt myself. I'm not easily rattled, really, and I have always tried to sort it out by reasoning with him, but it isn't working any more now.

I'm partly responsible for building upkeep along with the landlord who owns the other flats. But I just rang him and rather shakily demanded that a locksmith should come out tomorrow and he agreed. I think he was shocked to hear me sounding like that because it's not me at all.

Thanks for reassuring me that I'm not a heartless monster.

PinkBalloon123 Fri 15-Nov-19 20:55:48

If you own a flat I presume you are paying ridiculously high service charges and maintenance fees. This is why. Tell whoever benefits from these payments to get it fucking fixed. It's very sad this person is homeless but it's not your problem. The fact you are frightened in your own home? That is your problem.

Atalune Fri 15-Nov-19 20:57:31

Not heartless at all.

You deserve to be safe. Your need is valid.

Hisdoeherbuck Fri 15-Nov-19 20:59:54

I would go the opposite route, buy him some tins, as I hand them over tell him to tidy up, be quiet, and disappear in the morning. Do that and I’ll treat him well. Fuck up and game over dude

Aquamarine1029 Fri 15-Nov-19 21:02:05

Of course this man is causing harm. He's entering a property illegally, he's a vagrant, and he's causing you to be terrified in your own home. I would call the police every time and I would absolutely go mental on the landlord until that lock is fixed.

Guineapigbridge Fri 15-Nov-19 21:07:19

As if she would pour cold water over him. Not kind, totally dangerous.

DuckbilledSplatterPuff Fri 15-Nov-19 21:17:35

The landlord should have had that lock fixed much earlier than this and it would have discouraged him. Could you ask community police for advice on extra security for your building?
I don't know if you are Right to Manage? Or you have bought your freehold? Or you are a lessee?
But you can find out your rights from the Shelter website - particularly in regard to your awful and dangerous neighbour who has thankfully left - if it was the other Landlord's flat he had the responsibility to stop this behavour. He is clearly not vetting tennants and doesn't seem to care about the security of the building.
If you have a managing agent who is not doing their job in this respect report them to ARMA their association. Good luck and I hope you feel safer now.

EoinMcLovesCakeJumper Fri 15-Nov-19 21:19:23

Hisdoe I don't really feel entitled to make that choice on behalf of my neighbours as well. Some of them have their kids round to stay occasionally and I don't suppose they would want to step over him to get into their flat.

Guineapig who said anything about cold water? I certainly wouldn't do that. I don't wish him any harm, I just can't feel safe knowing he's there. I'm not used to feeling vulnerable and I hate that it's made me into the sort of person who turns a homeless man onto the street sad

EoinMcLovesCakeJumper Fri 15-Nov-19 21:24:29

Duckbilled it's a leasehold. We pay into a management fund which we run ourselves, but unfortunately the other landlord is extremely tight and reluctant to spend the money on things like this. But if I keep insisting he will give in, as he did this time. The tenants he has now are much better but he only learned his lesson after another dodgy bloke trashed his flat before leaving and stole all the fixtures and furnishings.

Prokupatuscrakedatus Fri 15-Nov-19 21:28:31

Fifth floor here and I occasionally find a homeless person asleep on the landing.
I try not to wake them when I go to work, so do my kids. The smell is awful though, but they - up till now - have been quiet and just wanted to sleep. There are not nearly enough sheltered places to go round.

But why does management not fix the door? I assume you pay lots of money to them?

Wibblewobble99 Fri 15-Nov-19 21:37:07

if he continues to refuse and you’re getting no where, speak to environmental health who will write to them and force them to act. if they fail to it will be remedied and billed to the landlord through the courts. Usually the threat is enough to get things moving.

jade9390 Fri 15-Nov-19 21:56:10

I have a similar problem, old evicted tenants who deal drugs still had they keys and used the place. I changed the lock but suggest that you call management, they should have done this ages ago.

Beseen19 Fri 15-Nov-19 21:57:57

I lived in ex council flat with communal areas maintained by the council. Our downstairs neighbours were let out by council and everytime one forgot her keys or was too high to work a lock she would kick the door in and break the lock. Cost us an absolute fortune each time to get it fixed (council charged £150 to change a single lightbulb once!). We got it fixed ASAP every single time, otherwise her friends would come in and sit on stairs and wait for her whilst having a quiet uninterrupted place to take drugs. You need to keep yourself safe and get the lock fixed immediately, don't let the landlord muck you about, that's an emergency repair.

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