I hail from a small town in Uttarakhand. Three years ago, I had come to Delhi to fulfill my dreams. I still remember how energetic and ambitious I was, when I arrived at the Delhi railway station. The fact that renting a house in Noida could be such a difficult task never crossed my mind at all.
As soon as I reached Noida, I rang up a number which I had found on a flyer that mentioned ‘flats for rent’, and discussed the details with the person concerned.
I rented a one BHK flat for which I had to pay ₹12,000 per month, which exceeded my planned budget. However, this wasn’t the end of it. I also had to pay double the amount for brokerage and security. I was in such a hurry to rent a place, that I had no other option. So I agreed to pay the brokerage amount.
It was an unfurnished flat, and therefore, I had to arrange all the amenities that further increased my expenditures. When I rented the place, I was promised that neither the owner nor the neighbours would interfere with my activities.
For the first few days, things were pretty peaceful. However, within a week, the owner started calling me up to inform me that I should not invite my friends over to the place, because apparently, the neighbours were being disturbed.
On the other hand, when I tried to complain about the owner’s guests shouting way past midnight, it was always neglected. Besides, the owner always reminded that I was a tenant at his place, and hence, I should not complain. As it is, I feel that people neglect me because of my bachelorhood!
Moreover, I also spoke to the owner numerous times about a leakage in my flat’s toilet. However, no help was sent. Ultimately, I had to get it repaired myself.
A couple of months later, I went back home for two days to attend a wedding. When I returned back, I was shocked to see that the door to my flat was unlocked. After asking my next-door neighbor about the incident, I came to know that the owner had to get some repairs done at my place. For this, he had opened my flat with a duplicate key.
This infuriated me tremendously. Moreover, some of my possessions were lying about scattered in the room. I approached the owner and asked him directly why my room was opened up without my consent, and then left unlocked. He very casually replied: “Kaam to karana hi tha na, aaj nahi to kal! (Today or tomorrow, the work needed to be done!)” That very day, I decided to leave the flat.
I tried to get in touch with my broker regarding the security deposit which they were supposed to refund me with. This lead to further complications, because I had a signed a contract for six months, and therefore, the brokers claimed that the amount could only be refunded after the contract period. Even though I realised that they were trying to earn more money from my contract, I could do nothing. Nevertheless, I agreed to vacate the place in a month.
The prospect of shifting to a new place worried me massively. I had lost all faith in brokers, and did not want to fall into the broker-owner conundrum/loophole again.
Then one of my friends recommended me to search a flat on a property search website and it turned out to be the best decision I have ever taken while renting houses.