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I’ve Had Better Days

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I’ve been in Australia for over 22 weeks now and enjoyed every minute of it. It was inevitable therefore that a crap day was to arrive at some point. That day was today.

On Christmas Eve (yes, you read that right – Christmas Eve), our landlord emailed us to say that in 60 days time she intends to put the rent up by $100 a week!

I responded with an “are you kidding me?!” email. The contents of which summarised was along the lines of; We’ve only been in the property for 4 months, we’ve had to deal with an ants nest on the balcony, and when comparable properties in Bondi Beach are no where near as expansive how can you justify this huge increase?

Today we got a written response from the landlord, the contents of which summarised was along the lines of; Tough.

It stinks of bait-and-switch. She’s lured us in on a lower rent, then smashed the price up as soon as she could to try and bully us into staying, as who wants to move out after they’ve only just started to settle in and just after the Christmas holidays?!

As it’s a landlords market over here (especially in Bondi Beach where there are over 30 applicants per property), the government have put in place a facility that lets you challenge actions such as this, but I think it might be more effort than it’s worth. So the house hunt is on again!

On top of this, we also got hit today with a $400 fine for traveling on the bus with the wrong travel card!

The public transport system in Sydney is pretty good and is run on the basis of pre-paid travel. You have to buy travel cards from newsagents before you board a bus or train. For the whole time we’ve been here, we thought we were doing it right as no one has questioned it, but apparently we’ve been using the wrong card.

It just so happened that today it was a ticket inspector that pointed that out to us and so accompanied the advice with two $200 fines.

He did say though that as there is absolutely no easily accessable advice on which ticket you should buy, that we should be ok to get it wavered for the first offence. We’ve submitted our case so we’ll await their response.

Not a great day, really.