Monday night I logged onto SL to continue my Twisted Hunt (stalling out in the 120's...) only to find my plans quite thwarted. The usually quiet St. Lucia Bay Properties Group IM was buzzing.
I clicked on the tab, assuming someone was throwing a party, needed help with deeding a tv or radio, or was simply bored. What I was able to deduce, after a few questions, is that the owners of St Lucia Bay, Xavier Hathaway & Lexus Daviau, had posted the entire community for sale in an Invite-Only (slumlord) group, picked up every single rent box, deleted all St Lucia Bay residents from their friends' lists, left the St. Lucia Bay Properties Group, and "left" SL, due to a 'family emergency."
They sent NO group notices, they issued NO refunds (Troy and I had five weeks left on our new place that we loved), they gave NO warning to any residents PRIOR to posting the sims for sale. Xavier did send a one sentence IM to a few St. Lucia Bay Residents Monday afternoon, but not to me, and it explained nothing. Everyone generally found out via the Group IM as residents of the first few sims to sell logged on to find their houses gone and all their possessions mass dumped into their Lost & Found folder. They turned to Group IM, and that's when Xavier's actions were discovered. Only one member of the management staff had the courage or decency to answer questions as best she could, and help people with 'deeded to group' items.
Needless to say, former residents of these sims are furious, stunned, and saddened. For Troy & I, the sims held great sentimental value. That's the first place we lived together, that's where we lived when we partnered. Many, many good memories....Gone with the Grid. (okay, so, I haven't lost my sarcastic sense of humor).
There is no legal accountability to Landlords in SL, so it's "Renter Beware." I know that. I also know that SL Landlords have a long & ugly history of buying/selling sims with NO concern for the residents. While commiserating in Group IM, I learned many of my former neighbors have gone through this sort of thing SEVERAL times in SL.
I find the actions of the new owners, deleting people's homes and mass returning their stuff into a jumbled mess in Lost & Found, JUST as rude and thoughtless as what Xavier and Lexus did. Again, no one even bothered to send us a Group Notice. You just logged on & figured it out for yourself.
I'll fill out the LL Complaint form, knowing it will do no good. I already sent Xavier a notecard asking for a rental refund and an explanation. He's not accepted it. I counted him as a friend and an honest businessman. I don't know what the family emergency was, but he had enough time to do many things before he left, but refunds & communicating to former tenants were not his priorities.
So, Troy & I are back at Nunki Kai for the time being, until we figure out what to do. I guess it's a good thing we never got a chance to throw that House Warming Party...