Gail Savage via Buzzfeed News

Woman’s Landlord Asks Her To Spend The Night With Him After She Loses Job

After losing her job due to the coronavirus outbreak, one woman was shocked when her landlord asked her to spend the night with him while she struggled to pay her rent, Buzzfeed News reported.

Information about the coronavirus pandemic is rapidly changing and Diply is committed to providing the most recent data as it becomes available. Some of the information in this story may have changed since publication, and we encourage readers to use online resources from CDC and WHO to stay up to date on the latest information surrounding COVID-19.

Many renters are currently facing difficult times.

Unsplash | Tierra Mallorca

The coronavirus pandemic has had a drastic effect on people's financial situations, and with so many finding themselves out of work right now, some renters are struggling to make payments to their landlords.

For lot of renters, the choice has been between paying rent, and putting food on the table.

Unsplash | Erwan Hesry

Research suggests that many renters have been experiencing, or have been brought the brink of, a personal financial crisis as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

In the UK alone, one in six renters have been forced to seek extra financial help with covering costs, according to a poll conducted by the Guardian.

However, one woman was recently faced with even more problems during this terrible time.

Gail Savage via Buzzfeed News

29-year-old Gail Savage recently lost her job as a bartender at one of Indianapolis's prominent cocktail bars. She also performs as a burlesque dancer, but due to current shutdown laws, all performances have been cancelled.

This left Ms. Savage struggling to cover her rent.

She had informed her landlord that she was waiting for her stimulus check to arrive.

Unsplash | Josh Appel

Savage had previously contacted her landlord to say that she was waiting for her government stimulus check to arrive so that she could use it to cover the rent owed for April.

However, in a text exchange on the subject, Savage's landlord apparently began to harass her.

The texts show that Savage's landlord asked her if she would be prepared to "stay all night" with him.

Unsplash | NordWood Themes

As she told Buzzfeed News, she initially thought that her landlord had texted the wrong number.

"I was like, 'he probably meant to send that to his girlfriend,'" Savage explained.

However, she quickly realized that he had meant to text her, and tried to ask him what he meant by his incredibly forward remarks.

It's clear through the text exchange that Savage became concerned about the safety of herself and her 2-year-old son.

Gail Savage via Buzzfeed News

She repeatedly asked her landlord what he meant as she didn't understand. Eventually, she realized what he was implying, and became very unsure about what to do next.

"The second I figured out it was happening, it was the craziest thing," she recalled. "I put Salem in his car seat and walked out the door. I was like, I don't know where I’m going, but I can't stay. I was scared."

There has apparently been a sharp increase in the number of landlords sexually harassing their tenants of late.

Gail Savage via Buzzfeed News

During the coronavirus pandemic, there have been reports that the number of landlords preying on and sexually harassing their tenants has increased massively.

"We have seen an uptick in sexual harassment," Sheryl Ring, legal director at Open Communities, a legal aid and fair housing agency, told the New York Post.

"Since [the pandemic] started, [landlords] have been taking advantage of the financial hardships many of their tenants have in order to coerce their tenants into a sex-for-rent agreement — which is absolutely illegal."

Despite her landlord's behaviour, Ms Savage had to stay in her flat for a month until she could find somewhere else to live.

Unsplash | Ethan Wilkinson

As she explained, "How am I supposed to move out with no money? That's why he chose me to do this to. He knows I don't have a job. He knows I don't have anywhere to go — he's preying on me."

Eventually, Savage was able to find a new place to stay with the help of a friend who works in real estate.

The landlord claims that the text messages were both a "joke" and a "misunderstanding".

Gail Savage

According to Buzzfeed News, the landlord insisted that he had been texting his ex-wife at the time, and "something got confused, that's all".

However, Savage hopes to not let this happen to anyone else.

She has said that she is well "equipped" to deal with her landlord's behaviour.

Unsplash | Scott Graham

"He picked the wrong person because I'm equipped for this. I'm not going to allow him to do this to me or anyone else," Savage said.

Hopefully, more and more landlords who try and get away with this kind of behavior will be brought to justice.

h/t: Buzzfeed News, New York Post