When I wrote last week I told you about, and showed photos of our new apartment. Our lease started on 1 July, and we arranged to meet the agent at the apartment to collect the key. We were very excited to be finally settling in our lovely new apartment. The key was duly handed over, along with receipts for the month’s rent we paid as a deposit. As we chatted with the agent, I noticed a few things that has not been there before. There were makeshift coverings on the bedroom window, some candles, and linen on the bed. It looked like someone was sleeping there!!
Further investigation revealed wardrobes full of clothes, and food in the fridge and kitchen cupboards. This was no squatter – someone had moved in to our place! Our real estate agent, Carol, assured us it was a mistake – she spoke with the owner who confirmed we were the tenants. We checked with the concierge, who had us on record as the tenants. I was sure it was a mix-up and would soon be sorted.
We did a little snooping and found the name of the person who was living there, and the agent who leased the apartment to him. After many phone calls and frantic conversations in Arabic the mystery was solved – and it was not a happy ending, for us anyway. It transpired that the owner had definitely rented the apartment to us, but his wife had, unbeknownst to him, rented it to someone else. Unfortunately, that contract was not only legally binding, it pre-dated ours by a day. Our agent was very apologetic, though it wasn’t her fault, and said she had never seen it happen before. A deposit and a signed contract should guarantee that the place is ours.
Back to the drawing board.
We have since looked at several more apartments, and have made an offer on one – we are waiting to hear if we are successful, but not getting nearly as excited this time around! This apartment is also on the Pearl, but in a different tower. It is “semi-furnished”, but cheaper, so we can afford to furnish it with the savings on the rent. It is quite a bit bigger, and ticks all our boxes. The only negative is that the view is not nearly as nice, but we can still see glimpses of water.
I’m not posting any photos this time until we are not only signed and sealed but also delivered. Meanwhile here is a photo of the small but private beach on the Pearl.