Friday, July 31, 2009


I arrived in Toronto, Canada yesterday for a 20 week stay to learn how to build acoustic and electric guitars from Joe Kovacic, a.k.a. Joe Lado. Joe has quite a reputation for quality instruments and when I saw that this was going to be his final school, I just had to sign on. I met Joe today and he is quite a character and I'm really looking forward to the class starting on Monday.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Makelaars redux

I have to say that I would have to be very desperate to ever use Rotsvast ever again as they are the absolute worst, the very bottom of the barrel. When we first attempted to move in the apartment at 31 Kromme Mijdrechtstraat in June of last year, there was still stuff in the apartment from where Rotsvast let a tenant live there short term until they found something for them in a neighborhood (De Pijp) where the tenant wanted to live. This delayed our moving in by a day and then when we did get to move in, the apartment was dirty and the tenant had left dirty sheets on the bed. We complained to no effect however. As part of the contract, we had to pay for a housekeeper to come in once a month, but nobody ever came to the apartment...but we still had to pay. The contract stated that our term was 'tot and met' (to and including) April 30th but on Wednesday, April 29th at 10 in the morning, Rotsvast called and said that the owner was back in town and wanted to move in at 5 in the afternoon that day! We found out later from the owners that they had been in Amsterdam for two weeks and had made that request two weeks previously but Rotsvast only told us the day that the owner had wanted to move in! Needless to say that didn't happen, but we ended up getting out of the apartment by midnight, even though it included my girlfriend and myself dragging a large mattress up two floors of steps in a dark stairhouse to get it done. We had to do the run through of the apartment with the owners the next day (Queen's Day, a holiday here). The makelaar was nowhere to be found, of course. The owners told us that while they had been on a year long trip, they repeatedly had to call to get the rent money every month and had run up a couple of hundred euro phone bill in the process. They also said that they thought that we should get the cleaning money back since no one had ever come by to do any cleaning. As of the date of this post, we STILL haven't gotten our deposit back although the owners said everything was fine and told Rotsvast the same. The contract plainly states that the deposit would be returned in a month after we moved out. They shove us out of the apartment early but they can't give us the deposit back on time. We have called several times now and still do not have the deposit back. The best that I can recommend is avoid Rotsvast unless you are absolutely DESPERATE as they are the worst of the worst, just horrible liars.