Renee and Robert Rimes rented a house from my parents in Okeechobee, Florida in April of 2007. I was suspicious when they asked my parents if they could move in the same day that they looked at the house. After only 2 months of paying on time, Renee wrote a check that bounced. My parents notified her and she claimed that there was an issue with the bank making a mistake. She wrote them another check, and it cleared,, but she wrote it very late in the month,, instead of at the beginning of the month. After that, the checks began to bounce quite regularly, until my parents declared that they would no longer take checks, and that she had to pay either by cash or by money order. My parents live in a town that is 1 1/2 hrs away, and my father used to have to drive out to the rental house to pick up the money. It was never on the 1st of the month like they promised. As a matter of fact, he would drive all the way out there, only to be met by tears and some sob story,, first she got hurt on the job, then she got laid off, then a child became sick, then said child got cancer, then Renee supposedly got breast cancer, then she was receiving expensive treatment and couldn't work, then she got 2 other forms of cancer. By the way, did I tell you that Robert has a stable job at the water department? A few times, my father tried to call first, only to have Renee answer and tell him that yes, she had the rent, to come on out. Then, when he got there, no one was home, or they would not answer the door. Finally, October of 2008 was the last time that my parents ever got any rent.
I kept telling them to file eviction orders, but my father is a very compassionate man, and he hated to evict them because of the 2 little daughters that they had. He felt terrible about them having no place to live.
In March of this year (2009), my father was diagnosed with cancer, and money is tight for my parents. My mother finally told Renee that they had to pay up all the money that they owe my parents,, or get out. (over $4000!)
My parents got $500 towards the end of march, with a promise of settling up with the rest in mid April and the beginning of May. (Supposedly tax refunds) Last week, when my parents had received no money, and could not get anyone to return a phone call,, my parents retained a lawyer to begin the 3 day eviction notice procedure. This past Thursday (04/23/09), my parents' lawyer told them that the process server could not get on the property, as the gate was locked. (This gate is never locked). The notices were placed on the gate. (They were also evicting a friend of Renee's who lived in the other house on the property,,, but that is another story!) My parent's drove out to the property last evening, and found everyone gone. The house is a disaster! There is garbage everywhere! They stole my father's tools, his pressure washer, jack stands, and even a new tarp cover that was the top for a car port! They stole a pole saw for cutting down branches for large trees, and even stole my mother's very expensive stag horn plants, which would have been very difficult to remove,, as they were very high up in the trees surrounding the yard and secured by chains. The bathroom tile all around the window and the shower is broken, falling off, and the entire bathroom needs to be redone! Now, they could call my parents when the air conditioner and the water softener needed to be repaired,, but they couldn't let them know that the bathroom was falling apart??
There was tons of rotten food in the cupboards and the refrigerator, and my mother said that they left their sex paraphernalia, which completely embarrassed my parents. (My dad is 73, and never spoke about that kind of stuff, let alone look at it!!)
When my parents called the Okeechobee county sheriff and wanted to press charges, they were told that they had to prove that Renee and Robert stole the items,, that anyone could have taken them. They also were told that they could not change the locks of the house to protect it from being vandalized until it was verified that Renee and Robert had moved all their belongings out. What a crock!! If they woudn't answer their phones when they were supposed to pay the rent,, how in the heck would one be able to verify that they were totally moved out??
Renee did leave the name of the apartment complex that they supposedly moved to on a piece of scrap paper that was in midst of all the garbage. My parents gave that to the sheriff, fat lot of good it will do them. I feel awful for my parents. Yes, they were very naive, and too trusting,, but they were brought up in the generation where people respected each other. I hope that someone who knows this rotten couple will see this,, and somehow,,they will pay for what they have done!!!