To respond to a few of your comments:
Ray: From what I can see, a big chunk of the problems have originated from two grad students who built about 100 room additions. This is egregious. How could this have been allowed to happen? In one fell swoop the character of the College Area was changed. That is a loss to all of us. It’s a great loss to me because now I am taking the heat for their developments. I personally have never made any additions to my properties, not one. They are in the same condition they were in decades ago. The six-bedroom home was converted in 1989. Nothing since. Wrong again, Ray.
Bill Kennedy: I don’t know how I have tormented any neighbors at all. If these people in my house were seniors, they would be no quieter than these students, some who barely speak English … except that the anti-student neighbors might like them more because they are not young. There are so many seniors renting rooms these days because they just can’t afford any other way. Are we going harass them too and kick them out the neighborhoods?
Rob: I do not live in town, but my son does and he checks on the housings every week if not more. You are right, it is a lot of work to run a good operation and I’m sure that many landlords aren’t involved enough to understand this. I may not know everything going on in your local community, but I do know that I tend to my own affairs and well at that. If my home is well kept, the residents quietly enjoying the use of their home, not bothering anyone, and there are only three or four cars on my property, why should I be harassed? Do I harass my neighbors? They make more noise than anything with their chain saws, hammering, dogs, etc. Once again, direct your anger toward the offenders, not just someone who happens to have a large crowd. There is nothing scarier in history than hysterical groups that lash out at group indiscriminately.
Live there: I am not making the problems. If I ever do, I care enough to do something about it. I love what I do. I love the kids (at least my quality ones). I so far have no complaints about my tenants even from the most die-hard anti-mini-dorm advocates in the neighborhood. Some of my tenants are on their fourth season with me. And yes, I have had the inspector out and was told that I had ample space for my group, well above the minimum requirements. It is interesting to watch the term “mini-dorm” morph into any housing with students, even when parents rent out a house for their children, which is often the case with me. The only problem I’ve had in the last three years was in a two-bedroom condo which had multiple parties. They were kicked out — three tenants only.
Jim re: party fines: You are wrong. Police have slapped some heavy fines. You should call them to get the latest statistics. However, not everything deserves a $1,000 fine. A few friends laughing and talking a little too loud? It sounds like you have a very intolerant feeling towards young people in general. Give them a warning the first time. That comes from ignorance on their part. They may not even realize they were talking too loud. As for those horrible parties, they should be completely banned from the neighborhoods. That’s $1,000 fine material. The problem as I have seen is the strangers coming into the area, not the residents. The kids living in the houses have a lot more at stake.
Wathdog: I use licensed contractors for all my work and get permits as required, so I don’t know where you are coming from. In addition, these homes aren’t mini-dorms. They are rented out as a house. So the truth is you don’t like the fact that the home is rented out to young people even when there is a master lease controlled by parents. This is exactly the harassment that I mentioned in my main article. I’m glad you wrote so everyone can see the kind of harassment students and landlords receive even when they are minding their own business and bothering no one. You have done me a service in showing everyone how meddling neighbors can be. Who wants to live next to you?
— DIANE MILBER