When my tenants, Chito and Teresa, asked me if they could install a window air conditioner I said “Of course. Just be careful when you put it in, so you don’t damage the window sill.” Many of my lower-income rental properties don’t have central air. They’re very old — close to 100 years — and although they’re sturdy and in great condition, central air isn’t included in the amenities.
Heads up: Don’t shy away from buying a property because it’s over 50 years old. If the operating systems have been updated (i.e. plumbing, heat and electric) these homes compare well to others. In many cases, the construction is much superior to some of the newer construction we see today. Plaster walls, hardwood floors, older ceramic tile, etc. . . . those old structures were built to last!
Anyway, back to Chito and Teresa. When I drove by the duplex they’re inhabiting, this is what I discovered:
OMG . . . I thought they were going to raise a window, stick the air conditioner in the opening and be done with the project, which is what all my other tenants do. But what they did is cut into this large Plexi-glass picture window in the living room. A Do-It-Yourself nightmare. I was really upset until I realized this was actually my mistake. Another “dumbass attack” on my part, even 15 years into the game! I rarely have these attacks anymore . . . they occurred frequently, early on in my career. I should’ve asked (and will in the future) which window they were going to use.
Here’s a picture of what this “project” looks like from the inside. Nice!
Chito and Teresa moved out and left the air conditioner. And the DIY disaster as well. I don’t know what I’m going to do with this mess . . . I’m going to brainstorm with my handyman, Craig, and see what can be done. Obviously, the window will need to be replaced and if we want to keep the AC unit in the living room we’ll need to figure out another option.
I just shake my head and laugh at this kind of thing because I couln’t have foreseen this happening. Humor is good! But even 15 years out, my learning curve continues. I love that.
Onward and upward . . .