06/22/2015 11:37 EDT | Updated 06/22/2016 05:59 EDT

Landlord says evicted tenants wrecked and robbed her Bay Bulls property

A St. John's woman says she was devastated when she discovered that her evicted tenants had wrecked and robbed her rental property.

Francene Patey rented her Bay Bulls home to a man and his girlfriend in January, but she says they eventually stopped paying their rent — and even their light bills.

The former female tenant told CBC News Monday that she moved out of the house in April. But Patey says the woman's name is still on the lease and that she never told Patey that she was moving.

Patey says both tenants were given an eviction notice to vacate the property on June 18, but had asked Patey for an extra day to clean up. 

When Patey walked into the house on June 20, she was shocked by what she saw.

"He had basically taken everything, from our brand-new washer and dryer … curtains, curtain rods, light bulbs, our child's desk that was left there, another desk in the den. Holes in the wall, mouldings torn up. It was just devastating," she says.

Patey says the executive-style home will need repairs and have to be repainted.

The greenhouse was filled with empty beer bottles, car parts and garbage, she says.

"It's just ridiculous. I mean, we worked to have this piece of property, for them to come in and just destroy and walk away," Patey says.

Police are investigating the stolen items and are trying to track down the individuals, Patey says.

Meanwhile, she's taken the matter to social media. Patey has posted a picture on Facebook of her stolen washer and dryer and is asking the public to keep an eye out in case the couple tries to sell her appliances.

Protecting landlords

Patey says there should be better measures in place to protect landlords. 

"These people came with references," she says.

"There should be some kind of system put in place that people can go in and check people, that if other landlords have had issues, some kind of registry that, you know, 'We've had these issues, it's documented.' But you know you're going by a phone call based on a reference that could be anyone's mother, sister, brother. It's hard to trust anybody calling you."

Patey says she feels disgusted by the lack of respect that the couple showed for someone else's property.

She will address the issues of the significant amount of missing rent and the required repairs at an upcoming hearing with the local landlords and tenants' association on July 2.