Ms. Demeanor's Vertical Etiquette

Dear Ms. Demeanor: A case of mistaken identity

By Jamie Lauren Sutton  | September 7, 2011 - 2:21PM

Dear Ms. Demeanor,

I live in a small rental building, and am acquainted with all of the neighbors. I have started getting robocalls from a debt collection agency. They are looking for the neighbor three flights down. This neighbor and I happen to have the same first name, which might or might not be why I am getting these calls.

Should I tell my neighbor? Should I give the correct phone number to the debt collector? Should I tell the debt collector they have the wrong party and leave it at that? Please advise.



Dear Not-My-Bill,

How incredibly annoying! Definitely let the debt collection agency know they do not have the correct phone number. You do not, however, need to do their job for them by giving them the proper number.

I would let your neighbors know that you have been getting these calls because something as small as an old cable bill from college is enough to destroy one's credit rating. Remember to withhold curiosity, anger, and judgment - all three of which may interfere permanently with beautiful days in the neighborhood.

Payback's a bitch,

Ms. Demeanor

Ms. Demeanor is channeled by a longtime Manhattan vertical dweller and real-estate voyeur who writes under the pen name Jamie Lauren Sutton. She is here to commiserate, calm and correct. Please email your quandaries to [email protected] and put "Dear Ms. Demeanor" in the subject line.

See all of Ms. Demeanor's advice here.



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