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HELP-Roommate Scammed Me-Now what?

Posted by melissa on March 27, 2000 at 12:43:55:

I recently (this weekend) moved out of a roommate situation from hell. I was staying with an older "friend" who declared bankruptsy in October. Monthly, I paid her my share of the utilities as well as my portion of the rent.

On Monday, she left a note saying that she needed the phone bill money. She didn't say what the amount was, and I'd been busy packing, so I decided to see if she had left the bill in her office.

The bill was 340-some odd dollars--60 for that month and the rest dating back to December. Apparently, she only has paid what would keep the phone from being turned off.

In a fit of anger, I went through the rest of the utility bills (all in her name) and found that the water, electricity, etc. are all past due as well. (200-300 dollars worth!) I freaked out; most of them listed the cut-off date by the 30th. Then I went into her "rent" folder and found a letter from the homeowner/landlord with a rent check she wrote that had been returned, on February 28th. She bounced a check to the damn landlord and he made her come to his house and pay cash! What the f---?

We had no written agreement between us. I had agreed previously to pay her 225 upon departure to cover the utilities. None of the money has gone toward utilities. Apparently, she didn't have enough money to cover her portion of the rent, either. I don't want to pay her, because it really pisses me off that she went bankrupt already has done the same thing again-especially with the bills that affect other people!

There is another renter in the house, as well, and I haven't said anything or taken any action. From what I see of the current bills, I owe about 67 + the phone bill.

I'm so angry about this, I am not sure I should pay, but at the same time, I want to do the right thing.

Also, the lease between her and the landlord states that she can be evicted if she doesn't pay her own utilities.

I feel sympathy but she's 40, I'm 22. I make 11.00 an hour and she makes much more. Her car is paid off, I don't even have one right now! I still have credit card debt, hers are all charged-off. She's the reason why bankruptsy laws are getting stricter.

Sorry for the rant, but I am pissed! What would you do? I want to either make out the check to the utility companies (the 67.00), write a letter to the landlord, or just plain stiff her. But I'm angry right now; I need a second opinion.

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