Category Archives: Hosting

Roommate-free Since 2011

It’s true! My roommate has moved out! Rejoice!

Lucky for me it was a somewhat-mutual decision, and also fairly amicable. There was only limited stealing of stuff this time, so I consider it a success.

Assuming everything goes well with my new job, I will be able to manage the $1300/mo rent by myself now.

To help create some extra income (I’ve already cut my costs down quite a bit) I’ve decided to continue renting out my extra spaces on Airbnb.

It’s really awesome, I’ve had great experiences so far (err, except for my drunk guest) with the service, and the potential to make lots of money is there!

So I have begun not only The Great Spring Cleanup, but also Operation Makeover.

I’m slowly going through my place cleaning, organizing, purging and redecorating in anticipation of my “new” life here and also for future Airbnb business.

Just this week I was told that Airbnb is sending a professional photographer to take shots of my spaces…for free! I’ll be able to use these photos to promote my listing and get way more business! I’ll finally be up to par with some of the other listings on there :)


This is fantastic news and I’m totally stoked…BUT it means that I really have to whip this place into shape!

Now, don’t get me wrong… my apartment is usually neat and tidy, but there is always room for improvement! I really want to cut down on clutter, open up the spaces and lighten them up.

Here’s what I’ve got planned:

  • De-clutter kitchen, find a new home for random plastic bag collection
  • Redecorate bathroom, warm it up
  • Paint dining room, declutter & organize pantry
  • Declutter my room by shifting random crap into my new storage closet downstairs, move bookshelf out
  • Move bookshelf into guest/TV room, organize space (not much needs to be done here)
  • Makeover entire second bedroom into deluxe guest room and library! woohoo!
  • Thoroughly clean every. single. room. as I go

Is it weird that I get excited about this kind of stuff?

I’ll admit, I’m a little afraid I’ve bitten off more than I can chew. I’ve been having dreams about cleaning and organizing, and I feel a little overwhelmed at times. But I’m mostly ok. I’ve got my trusty monster-sized list of things to do and am starting with the easier things and working my way up.

I’m also focusing on things that will directly impact the photoshoot, since it’s coming up on March 13th! Ack it’s so soon! So things like cleaning out the fridge and reorganizing storage spaces will have to wait until after while I focus on the big stuff.

I’ve actually made excellent headway. The bathroom makeover is almost complete (post to come) as well as the kitchen; and I’ve finally gotten a bunch of crap out of my room and the dining room.

Piece by little piece this will all come together!

Time for the reader input now; have you ever challenged yourself with a makeover task of this magnitude? How did you fare?

Follow Up: Dealing with an Alcoholic Guest

Last week I frantically posted about having a bed & breakfast guest that came to my place drunk and proceeded to steal my Jameson whiskey and drink it.

Here’s what happened.

After writing the post, I tried to get some sleep. Despite my confidence in self-defense and smart thinking, I was definitely uneasy. I locked myself in and made sure I knew where all my weapons were and ran through in my head what I would do if he tried to get in and go for the booze.

Lucky for me, he was passed out in the guest room for the whole night.

In the morning before work I spoke with him about the night before. By this point he was sober and sincerely sorry about his behavior. He apologized profusely.

I told him that I wanted to be reimbursed for the bottle he opened (Jameson ain’t cheap, my friends!) and he agreed and said he would also make it up to me.

I left for work (after locking my door of course) and felt a little better. I was still a little worried about the whole situation and whether to let him stay or not and decided to evaluate things when I got home.

Later that night, Mr. Singapore came home and apologized to me again, presenting me with a new bottle of Jameson, flowers and a bottle of wine for my troubles. Very nice! I tried not to let things get too awkward because I knew he was trying to make amends so I kept up a steady stream of chatter to smooth things over.

My roommate and I decided he could stay for the rest of the week as long as he stayed clean. He did the responsible thing and attended local AA meetings and called his wife, so I felt ok about this.

However I realize just how lucky things were for us. I think in the future I need to evaluate guests more closely and am going to stick to couples and female guests only. My parents were pretty horrified when I told them this story.

It was a good lesson learned for sure, and made me think about things a lot more. I will still use the Airbnb service for future bookings (they answered my panicked email quickly and had my back on any decision I made) but I will definitely be more careful!

Dealing with an Alcoholic Guest

So I knew this day would come… the day in which we got a questionable booking from

This week we are hosting a 44 year old business man who flew in from Singapore to visit his family in the GTA.

I wasn’t around to receive him, but my roommate was. I was out at an event and came home to her frantically miming me to check my phone messages.

Turns out the guy is an alcoholic and showed up drunk at our door, which made my roomie quite uncomfortable. By the time I got home she assured me that she was ok with this guy and that he could stay, but after what just happened I am not so sure.

We all talked a little and he seems like a nice but very troubled man. I feel for him, I do.

But I wasn’t sure how to feel when I discovered that the Jameson whiskey my best friend gave me for xmas yesterday went missing while I was in my room.

Turns out Mr. Singapore was hiding in the bathroom with the light off, drinking my whiskey.


Thank goodness my iron spine has been growing back lately!

I confronted him and retrieved my whiskey and an apology. I discussed with him that that is completely unacceptable and that that kind of behaviour is not allowed here. I told him that instead of stealing our booze he should reach out and talk to one of us if he has the urge. Roomie is already going to an AA meeting with him tomorrow to help support him.

I also told him that I was taking all our booze to my office and/or locking it up so he couldn’t get at it. I told him that we had no other drugs or cigarettes in our home either. I know from experience that you just can’t trust an alcoholic of this degree. (Not knocking all alkies, but this guy is pretty bad if he can’t control himself at a stranger’s home)

Roomie and I rushed around while he was out for a smoke, gathering up all of our booze. Shit son, I have a LOT! Plus I still had wine left over from my party yesterday… I probably have over 30 bottles of alcohol in my bedroom right now.

I have a lock on my door (and am currently locked in my room for the night) and I really hope he doesn’t know how to pick those little door knob locks because the deadbolt on my door isn’t working right now.

I don’t really know what to do with this situation. I feel bad for the guy and want to help him while he’s here, but I also don’t want my things stolen from me or rifled through. I don’t feel endangered by him, it’s just how he took my booze that bothered me.

What would you do in this situation?