10 Horrifying Landlord Stories—From Stealing Money to Stalking Tenants

Karl Marx once wrote: "Landlords, like all other men, love to reap where they never sowed."

You might consider this a pessimistic view on those that rent their homes—the majority of us have good experiences.

But, ask a group of people to tell you about their landlord tales, and invariably there will be a few shockers.

So, where is the best place for harvesting great stories? Reddit, of course.

We have trawled the discussion-based site to find some of the worst landlord experiences.

If you are having issues in your rented accommodation, hopefully these stories will make you realize it could be a lot worse...

1. The Festive Invasion

"My landlord asked if I was going home for Christmas and I said it was. Christmas sucked so I came back early and found my landlord and three of his buddies smoking cigarettes, drinking beer and playing poker in my living room."


2. The Brazen Denier

"Had a leak in the house that went unfixed for weeks, then my ceiling sprouted black mold in a large patch 5 feet wide, and WHILE STANDING UNDER IT denied there was mold and refused to fix it or do anything about it."


3. The Spooky Stare

"Well, they weren't the actual owner, but I was sub-renting a room from a couple who rented an apartment. The couple was an Australian guy who used to be an alcoholic (had a steady job but he tended to slur his words and forget things) and a 40-something Chinese student. She would go into the toilet after every time I went and thoroughly scrub it. And then one day I came home at about 1am. I was in the kitchen making a peanut butter sandwich when I heard a noise and turned to my left. From the kitchen I could see through the lounge room into the study - all the lights in both rooms were off but I could see the Chinese woman sitting at the computer, facing me. I turned back to my sandwich, not wanting to believe she was actually there, but I turned back and now she was sitting facing the computer (which was off). I didn't stay long after that."


4. The Chancer

"Maybe not a bad experience story, but definitely weird as hell. Lived in a duplex in Clearwater, Florida as a kid. landlord would occasionally come and ask for a forward on the payment for next months' rent. Never knew why. Moved to Ohio to be closer to family, and the landlord showed up randomly after a couple years living there, and asked if we had any spare cash.."


5. The 'Mistake'

"I was renewing my contract for 6 months before I moved out and they gave me a contract for a year. Shame on me for not noticing, but it was like a 60 page contract, and it was their mistake as well. But they get lots of money from it and I get screwed. I've heard stories from other people and it seems management companies love to make these sorts of 'mistakes'."


6. The Smoking Gun

"I once had a landlord try keeping my deposit over cigarette butts on the sidewalk. I don't smoke and they were probably tossed out of car windows as they drove past. Weren't even actually on the property. Anything to screw you out of $1000+, ya know?"


7. The Snooper

"In the last week of me being there I caught him [the landlord] going into my room and bedroom multiple times on my motion sensor camera looking through all of my stuff without permission. He kept asking me to do things on his time and when I refused he would say "do you have a problem with that?" aggressively like he was going to do something to me. I felt so unsafe that I slept at my girlfriends house the entire week while he kept texting me everyday asking me to do something. When I was moving out he kept watching me and my girlfriend move. Literally moved his head as we passed by him with boxes. He kept telling me to "let him know an hour before I was leaving" but I didn't due to how unsafe I felt and just left without responding."


8. The Thief

"Literally made me give him two thousand before I moved in to fix the floors, walls, doors, windows and outlets. None of it got fixed. Also found out a tree fell on the place and he never got the roof fixed correctly so black mold. Then on top of everything, upped the rent."


9. The Stalker

"I moved to Israel last year and was stalked by my landlord. Worst of all he was that he had a key to my apartment and would randomly let himself in while I was home and not home. I once even caught him watching me while I was sleeping. My roommate thought it was just a big joke."


10. The Spin Doctor

"There was a cold draft coming form the closest. Got a stool and pretty sure I could see light. Went outside and sure enough there is a 6 inch hole with no baffle, fan, or cover of any kind. Called the landlord, he tell me it's the fresh air exchange system. The f*** you just say to me? No I build houses for a living. I'm calling building and safety on your Mickey Mouse bullshit, winter's can get down past 30 below."


landlord handing someone keys
A stock image of a landlord handing a tenant the keys. On Reddit there are many shocking stories of when renters having bad experiences. Getty Images