“You’re terminated. Get to the chopper”

So speaks Arnold Schwarzenegger, the new host of The Celebrity Apprentice. In a move that not even the most hung-over-drug-induced-bong-smoking-embracing-their-inner karma-so rad-it-hurts script writing team could have come up with, the reality TV show had to find themselves a new host because the current host got the biggest gig in the firmament: 45th President of the United States of America. I wonder whether there was a clause in the scree of paper produced by NBC’s legal team that made provision for his being released from his contractual obligations because of  having to pick the new carpet for the Oval Office? It made me smile when I heard that the theme tune to The Celebrity Apprentice is “For the Love of Money” by The O’Jays. Regardless of one’s political affiliation, I don’t think that anyone could disagree that it would have been an equally appropriate theme tune for the Clinton campaign to be carpet-picker-in-chief. I would like to think that I and the new commander-in-chief of the world’s most expensive military with the second largest nuclear arsenal, (that will soon become the largest if his inauguration speech is any indication of what is to come) have quite a lot in common. An appreciation of the Eastern European female form is one of them. A deep and enduring love for what hair we have left another. Although if I may be so bold Donald, I really think that the shaven action hero look trumps (geddit?) the sugar-icing on a christening cake look. Just my opinion, but I bet Melania would agree. Tell her The Chesh said. No, what really unites us is the internet and the scurrilous statements perpetuated about us through the cyber sphere. Intercepted communications implying that the Russian government had helped to elect him are almost of equal import to landlords who we last represented two years ago (with no complaint, I must add) slating us on a review site. Being serious for one moment, the review that featured on raterAgent the team at Cheshire & Co were outraged to read, not least because 1. It was wholly inaccurate (and that is a generous description), as evidenced in the Cheshire & Co response, but 2. It made no sense at all. Why post an outraged, damnatory review two years after any involvement with the agency who managed your rental property; why not before? Why mention another agency extolling their efficiency? Why not write a review praising them on their own website/review page? The conspiracy theorists among us might suggest that a representative from the said agency prompted our reviewer to punch out his disgruntled dispatch…Only time will tell.

 

Remind me, we are in 2017?

I appreciate that our bank balance and credit card statements will tell us that we are still in single digits for the date of the new calendar year, but I am querying not the day of the week, but the year of the millennium. 2017? Or 1917 if one is a certain Mr Fergus Wilson. According to the New York Times, 2017 is, “The Year of the Renter” New York Times, Friday 6 January 2017. Not if the infamous Kent property magnate has any thing to do with it. Regular followers of our blog will note that we have had cause to mention this gentleman before in previous dispatches. The owner of in excess of 900 (yes, that is the correct figure), buy-to-let properties has a history of making statements bordering on the ridiculous, contentious and willfully bellicose and the the British media has a history of publishing them. According to the Medway Messenger and kentonline.co.uk, Fergus has introduced a set of rules for any potential tenants of his houses and this “letting criteria” is being introduced as a means of, “fine tuning” the business to “best advantage”.OK. Are you sitting comfortably children, shall we begin?

For Mr Wilson, the following (amongst others), are, “not acceptable”.

  • Tenants with children under 18. What happens if the tenant gets pregnant?
  • No single parents. What happens if a relationship breaks down or one partner is killed or is diagnosed with a terminal illness and has the temerity to die? Forget choosing the hymns for the funeral, you need to be finding a new house.
  • No low income workers. How does one define ‘low income’. Does no income but a trust fund of £3 million exclude them?
  • No single adults. So they may be earning a considerable amount, but because they are working hard at their job of heart surgeon, lawyer, professional poker player they have no time /interest in socialising/meeting potential spouses, so that rules them out?
  • No battered wives. So battered husbands are alright? And when does a wife start being classified as battered? If she does get belted every Friday night (or any other day of the week) and leaves her husband taking their three year old with them, does he get kicked out as well for being a single father, even though the child is no longer there?

In his interview, Fergus says that he has, “nothing against lesbians, single mothers” and wait for it, “coloureds” kentonline.co.uk, Friday 6 January 2017 FFS, Fergus, it is 2017 in Kent, not 1957 in Alabama. Interestingly, Fergus does not state criteria re no renting to lesbians or homosexuals or “coloureds”, so why mention them in the same breath as single mothers with whom he must definitely does have an issue? Nor does he state that that has has anything against fat f£$kers. The photo accompanying the article possibly explains why…

Subsequent failure to meet any of the criteria would not give Fergus possession of the property under a Section 8 notice, so how exactly does he plan to manage his way out of any of the rules being flouted. Does he plan to visit the wife in A&E as she waits to have her arm reset whilst giving a statement to the police, to try and issue her with a Section 8?

Not much results in my being left dumbfounded, but I genuinely had to check the diary to confirm that it wasn’t April 1.

One last question; How the hell did he manage to acquire 900 properties?