North Pole Housing Costs

Hi everyone, it's Melissa and Idegad of North Pole House. First off, we need to thank you all for your patronage and support over the past couple of years. What we’ve been able to achieve in our little household has been so fulfilling and we’re forever grateful for the positive reception we were able to achieve, but as you may have noticed, we’ve been a little inactive lately. Despite our best efforts to continue our string of events, there have been a couple of severely inhibiting factors that have completely derailed any momentum we had. We're trying to recover funds lost by a bunch of recent unexpected housing costs! tl;dr version - we're in a tight spot because of irresponsible friends and negligent property management and are using emergency funds to keep ourselves in safe, stable housing.

Longer version - In October, all us NPH residents were worried our common place of employment would be laying us off within 2 to 4 weeks if certain government restrictions were placed on the company's business. This led Josiah and Phoebe to understandably conclude that, should that happen, they could no longer afford to live at the house. We (Idegad and Melissa) started posting everywhere and asking around to try to find new tenants to take over the empty space they'd leave. P & J initially showed a willingness to take responsibility and pull their weight as housemates and friends, but ultimately made very minimal efforts to find replacements for their spot on the lease, and only after some insistence from us. We fielded several requests for info from prospective tenants and even got quite close to locking people in a few times, but ultimately nothing happened.

Then our work situation became more stable and Josiah expressed his confidence in their ability to stay at the house for at least another month! He even took on a second job in November, presumably to make up for the unreliability of our other job and, we hoped, to be able to stay at NPH (or at least to not leave us hanging financially once they left).

Through all this, both Phoebe and Josiah began displaying antagonistic behavior, ranging from purposefully and admittedly ignoring messages, ignoring our physical presence and giving non-responses to daily greetings, actively bragging about neglecting to complete simple household chores, placing our outdoor waste bins to block in our cars from exiting the driveway, vocalizing anti-BLM rhetoric in line with current presidential politics, as well as expressing disparaging opinions on the state of Native American affairs.

Fast forward to a few days before Thanksgiving and we start to notice messes being left by rodents in our kitchen! None of us had really experienced this before and sought help from our landlady. Pest control guys came with cheap glue traps, which one mouse promptly got caught in. Melissa, a huge animal lover, had to kill it while no one else was home and it was pretty traumatizing. She asked if either P or J could take a few hours' break from the house sitting they'd been doing for the past few days to provide moral support and cleaning help the next morning. Josiah responded sympathetically and said he'd be happy to help. Come morning though, he left us high and dry because he didn't double check his work schedule and turned out to be unavailable.

The day we returned from visiting family for Thanksgiving, we sent two more texts to P & J asking them to return to the house to help clean the kitchen, which would hopefully prevent the spread of the mice. Over 24 hours passed with no reply. After messaging them on Instagram the morning of December 1, they admitted to ignoring the texts and announced they would be moving out all their stuff later that day. At least they would still pay December rent (which turned out to be nearly three weeks late anyway)!

So now we're left to deal with the task of finding new housemates in the midst of a rat infestation with absolutely no help from our (former) housemates. Ultimately this has made it impossible to feel safe, let alone comfortable, in the house.

Fast forward to the first few days of January. After being abandoned by our former housemates who have been unable or unwilling to help rectify issues with our shared home, we're moving into a room in an apartment. We now find ourselves responsible for at least one month of paying rent for two separate places, leftover utility charges that remain unpaid by P & J, a new security deposit for the apartment, and the forfeiture of our security deposit on the house to make up for breaking the lease. As of today (1/5), they’re still on the lease and technically owe their share of rent for January, too. Our landlady has been sympathetic and offered to “deal with” those costs, but we’re still left with a lot that neither she nor P & J can be relied on to help with.

Here’s the cost breakdown:
1. Overdue PG&E charges: $166
2. Overlapping apt rent: $1050
3. New security deposit (apt): $1085
4. Forfeited security deposit (house): $1840

Anything helps. Even if you can’t afford to help financially, just the fact that you’ve read this far means a lot. Melissa is using up inheritance money from her grandfather who passed in 2018 to cover all these costs. He was a generous man who would not have hesitated to help out but he also had a strong sense of diplomacy and justice which we know would make him appalled by our circumstances. Thank you so much for reading and helping in whatever way you can! We hope to be able to give back in whatever ways we can once we get settled.


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Melissa Schiller 
Davis, CA
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