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Reverent Residence – Open Wide Please!

Sometimes coincidences of almighty proportions befall us. These occur in all walks of life including amongst letting agents.

During the summer is the ideal time for a holiday, unless you specialise in letting to students. The summer is when the vast majority of students finish at university and leave their accommodation or go on vacation for two months. This is therefore the ideal time to clean and maintain property.

Preparing a large number of properties creates pressure to fit them all in during the relatively short time of absence. Summer lets can thus add to any stress. A tight time schedule is required but contingencies must be factored into the diary.

Having pre-arranged a dental check-up some six months in advance I was subsequently unexpectedly faced with the remote possibility of a tenant arriving at the same time as my dental appointment. Contingency plans were in place for a colleague to enable access to the property in the unlikely event of an untimely arrival. The tenant was no less than the Bishop of Jerusalem, together with his family, resident whilst attending the Canterbury Lambeth Conference in 2008. Travelling from Jerusalem meant that no accurate arrival time could be given. I was just about to depart for my dental appointment when I was blessed with a calling; the telephone. Even before answering, the gift of prophesy fell earthwards. “It’s bound to be the Bishop”, I predicted. “We have arrived in Canterbury” the bishop announced. Sure enough my appointment was anointed.

I then sought to apply my contingency plan. I contacted my pre-arranged substitute, but his phone was demonically unresponsive. I could hardly leave the bishop and his family standing outside the front door – for all I knew he was clad in all his regalia with mitre atop? I apologetically left a message cancelling my dental appointment requesting an alternative and meanwhile attended to our Holy arrivals.

The next morning, a Saturday, per chance, one of the Bishop’s daughters required urgent dental treatment, suffering from odontology – that’s toothache in layman’s lingo! In the UK, dentists do not normally work at weekends. Whilst hospital emergency treatment is available, this can be accompanied by a long painful wait. Not being locals, to whom does one turn in such situations? Why the letting agent of course – who else?! Unfortunately my experience was limited to laying prostrate in the dentist’s chair. I nevertheless attempted to arrange a dental appointment, using whatever influence remained with my dismayed dentist (who fortunately happens to be a very close friend – at least he was until the previous day before cancelling at the last moment). For this reason I explained to my dentist friend in detail, the reason for, and irony of, my own late cancellation the previous day. I was not name-dropping, merely trying to rescue a saintly soul from an unholy utterance – uuhhh. Was this a religious form of speaking in tongues?

Many months later, during a routine visit to my dentist, I found he had compiled a hilarious collection of excuses (or in my case confession) as to why patients had failed to keep appointments (probably compiled whilst awaiting failed appointments). Entitled, “The Tooth Fairy”, my entry, whilst true, was the least believable, “Sorry I can’t make it, the Bishop of Jerusalem has just arrived”.

Whilst resident The Bishop and his family were model tenants with no complaints from the neighbours about noisy late night drunken parties!

Leydon Lettings is a Canterbury UK based Letting Agent providing phenominal quality accommodation for students attending the three main universities: UKC, UCA, CCU. Typically Leydon Lettings provides double beds in over 90% of rooms, ensuites in over 50% of rooms, with double kitchens in over 70% of houses. Leydon Lettings is a member of a number of organisations aimed at improving housing standards for students whilst mindful of local residents. Leydon Lettings is a member of TPO, NLA, RLA, SLA, FSB and founder member of CSLF.

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