Cork renting horror story; My landlady cut off the electricity to intimidate me

Cork renting horror story; My landlady cut off the electricity to intimidate me
Edel Conlon, southern regional manager, Threshold, and Conor Lynch, assistant manager, Threshold, outside the Cork office at South Mall. Picture: Denis Minihane.

A WOMAN who faced eviction from a Cork home because she became pregnant said she lived in fear of a physical attack from the landlady.

The disturbing admission was made by the renter whose story was revealed in The Echo.

Representatives from the housing charity Threshold, which provides advice and advocates on behalf of tenants, had told of how a renter was almost forced out of her home while six months pregnant. 

The landlady had argued that the baby's crying would cause disturbance to neighbours and asked her to leave.

Now, the woman, known only as Anna, has opened up about her struggles with the landlady from hell.

"At one point, my landlady tried to break into the house," Anna said. 

"I called the Gardaí. When they arrived she tried to physically attack me and they had to pull her off me."

According to Anna, the landlady had cut off her electricity as another means to intimidate her. 

She also tried to cut off the water supply. 

"She brought in a plumber and told him there was a leak, trying to force him to turn the water off. I told him that if the supply was turned off she wouldn't turn it back on. 

"The plumber didn't want to get involved and walked out of the house."

The mistreatment left Anna in a constant state of fear.

"I should have been enjoying my time with my new baby. Instead, I was terrified, so terrified that I couldn't walk to the shop with my baby on my own. 

"I'm still scared she might find where I live but I can't be scared forever. Now, I can take my baby for a walk and try not to be scared about what's going to happen to me. It's over now. I'm finally free."

She recalled how the landlady had attempted to spread mistruths about her.

"She said I was throwing parties all the time even though I was pregnant and so tired after work. The closest thing I'd have to a party was inviting a friend round for coffee."

Anna is now looking forward to the future as she settles into her new home.

"I'm still in shock from the old place. My new landlord knows my story. He's reassured me that it's over and I can stay in the property for as many years as I like.

Anna urged renters in similar circumstances not to suffer in silence.

"I'm not the only person going through this, but if you don't speak up there's no help. We are all humans and nobody deserves to be treated in this way. I just hope this landlady learns from what she's done."

She thanked the organisations who supported her during the difficult ordeal including Threshold and Good Sheperd Cork.

"There are some people out there who don't even know these organisations exist. 

"I thought this would be a neverending story but they showed me the light. I thought the stress would always be there but now I have happiness again."

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