By John Grooms
Posted: Tuesday, Jun. 26, 2012
So you have a great house on Lake Norman and youre wondering: Should I rake in extra dough by renting it to high-rollin Democrats in September? I say, Why not? The national Democratic convention is an opportunity that will probably never come here again, so go for it. After all, not all the delegates will want to stay in Charlottes uptown hotels with their Special Exorbitant September rates. Some of them may simply prefer a home away from home in a nice, natural setting.
Whatever the delegates rationales, theres no reason you shouldnt profit from what our local media tells us is the biggest, most sensational, image-polishing (as well as traffic tie-uppingest and locals-inconveniencing-est) major, super-World-Class event in Charlotte-area history!
There are already some websites devoted to matching homeowners with would-be Democratic renters, including dncdig.com and dncrental.com. They do a good job, but if youd rather keep the agencys percentage for yourself, remember that its important to know whom youre renting to and what to expect. Theres a wide variety of Democratic delegate types for you to consider, so here is a handy guide to the various Democratic sub-groupings to help you along.State and County Officials
What to expect: These people are often automatically picked for national political conventions, so dont be surprised if they exude a sense of entitlement thats strong enough to knock you down. They may ask for all kinds of extras, including hot tubs, in-house masseurs, and the key to your liquor cabinet.
What to avoid: Look for the reddish facial tint known as liquor burn, cigarette burns on their clothes, or excessive gold jewelry.
What to look forward to when they leave: A clean house overall, with possible barroom smell (or conversely, a bleached odor), and a need for a major investment in new booze.Feminist Activists
What to expect: Contrary to popular stereotypes, feminist activists can throw down a serious party. But on the whole, the byword is serious, as in serious about womens rights and just about everything else, so they are likely to be respectful of your property.
What to avoid: Younger women with anarchy symbol tattoos.
What to look forward to when they leave: A clean home (Lord knows women love housework, right?) [THIS IS SATIRE! PLEASE DONT HIT ME!] Also, expect some possible residual patchouli scent.African-American Politicos with Money
What to expect: Hard working, but sporting amazingly stylish clothes, AAPWMs will give your house a cachet of hipness while keeping it intact.
What to avoid: Cigar smokers or men who wear too much Polo Double Black cologne. Seriously, ask.
What to look forward to when they leave: Whatever youd expect after renting to white politicos with money -- you think Im racist or something? OK, plan to open the windows to reduce any leftover Polo Double Black fumes, but other than that, youre good.Union Officials
What to expect: Big, burly but friendly guys with their big, burly but friendly wives. The guys use old-school hair oil rather than gel, and they may request a commitment from you to hire a unionized maid service for the duration of their stay.
What to avoid: Anyone wearing an I Buried Hoffa In Five Different Places button.
What to look forward to when they leave: A spotless home (if you remembered the unionized maid service), or else a horse head in the master bedroom.Old Hippies
What to expect: Remember that for many of these Democrats, its still the late 1960s, so they may ask if its OK to sleep out on your dock because we love the stars, man. Theyre mostly a peaceful, pleasant bunch, however, as long as they dont mix your alcohol supply with, um, whatever they bring.
What to avoid: Anyone with an X carved into his or her forehead.
What to look forward to when they leave: Soggy sleeping bags on your dock, small pages of blotter paper with parts torn off, and remnants of an apparent granola explosion in the kitchen.Corporate Honchos/Wall Streeters
What to expect: Arrogant dweebs with phony smiles and hatchet eyes. They will ask for sorry, they will demand the earth and sky. When you refuse to provide it for them, theyll mention certain foreclosure experts in their employ.
What to avoid: Corporate honchos and Wall Streeters.
What to look forward to when they leave: They now own your house, and plan to burn it for the insurance money.John Grooms is an award-winning writer and editor, and author of Deliver Us From Weasels, a collection of essays and musings.