We decided to get out of the Pearl Street house completely. There were just too many things wrong with it. Today, we met with a new realtor and went to look at these two houses:
The Kulien street house we just didn’t feel good about. We’re going to look into the Lincoln Street house further. It’s almost completely gutted, with just a kitchen and a bathroom. Everything else is totally open, except one bedroom. There’s a lot of work visible just to start with, without even looking under the house or in the attic.
In the course of conversation with the realtor, we were talking about the house we decided not to get. I mentioned something about the owner being in Mexico, and the realtor said, “Wait, is the owner’s name Buffi Bloom?” When I confirmed, she said, “Well, I don’t want to say anything bad, but she’s a total slumlord.” Apparently Buffi owns 16 buildings in Centralia, most of the multi-family units, and she’s selling them all off. Cecilia, the new realtor, has been in a few of them and she says they are totally pieces of crap. When we mentioned the handyman, she said, “You mean Fernando?” and you could tell by the way she said his name that she wasn’t a big fan. I get the impression that Fernando actually speaks English just fine, but he prefers for people to think he doesn’t. Anyway, just a nice confirmation that we probably made the right decision.
We are super impressed at our agent’s knowledge so far. At the Kulien street house, it came up with the current renters that the owner lives far away and the owner’s son takes care of the house. The renter kept referring to him as John, and Cecilia asked him what John’s last name was. There was this long pause and the guy obviously didn’t want to tell her who the owner was. Finally he said, “Olsen”. Later, when the renter’s were gone, Cecilia said, “I think this house is owned by Buffi also. Her real name isn’t Buffi, she changed it after a commercial deal scandal some time in the 80’s. I think her previous name was Olsen, but I don’t remember for sure. I’ll look into it and get back to you.” Besides that it’s just pretty cool that she has our backs, it also totally pisses me off that Scott (our old agent) has been in business in Centralia for a few decades and no doubt knew all of this information about Buffi, but didn’t bother to tell us. I’m glad we switched agents, too.