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Renter Horror Story 1: Cockroaches, Mice, and Wolf Spiders

To cultivate the spirit of Renters Week, we asked readers to send their Renters Horror Stories. Today, we'll present the two most gruesome of the lot, which will face off in an epic deathmatch, poll style, tomorrow. The winner of that round will enter the final round and face the winners of the individual Curbed city sites on Friday, at which point someone will emerge with a month's worth of rent (up to $2,500) funded jovially by Curbed.

From Mandy in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio:

My first mistake was in letting my then-boyfriend (now husband) pick out the apartment and hand in our deposit before setting eyes on it myself. The second was getting blinded by the apartment balcony overlooking the lake and amazingly low rent—only $520! Then realization set in.

Yes, those were WASPS living in the wall right outside said balcony door. And giant wolf spiders stringing their webs over our BBQ and balcony furniure, rendering the lake view unenjoyable. Then those spiders found their way indoors. How? We never did find out. Plus, despite the bimonthly bug spraying that targeted only the kitchen and bathroom—and by the way, I've since learned that if exterminators are a selling point, RUN AWAY FAST—I found cockroaches under our kitchen sink.
The last straw was the mice. I stored our cat's food under the kitchen sink. One evening I reached for a bag, tipped it over the pet food dish and out tumbled two mice. I screamed in shock while the cat stared at the mice dumbly, not sure of what to do and probably thinking, "duh, this doesn't resemble my food." After scooping up the mice and letting them loose outdoors, I threw out the cat food and reached for another already-opened bag. Only to find two more mice.

We moved out a month later.

· All Renters Week 2011 posts [Curbed National]