WHEN Clayton Crowe walked in to inspect an apartment he had been renting to a tenant, he "wanted to throw up".
The floor was barely visible beneath piles of filth, and paint had been splattered throughout the studio.
The Bazaar St apartment at the former Post Office Hotel once had polished floors, freshly painted walls and a double bed. After six months of renting the room to a man, it resembled a garbage dump.
"I'm disgusted," Mr Crowe said looking around the room. "It makes you want to cry. You rent out a place in the centre of this beautiful town, ask for no bond, and this happens."
Mr Crowe described the tenant, who was an artist, to be the "tenant from hell".
He had no choice but to ask the man, who still owes him money for rent, to leave.
"He poured paint down the sink, we had to rearrange the plumbing," Mr Crowe said.
"As soon as I walked in on Saturday, I wanted to throw up. I had no idea what was going on inside there that whole time."
The hotel owner said repairing the studio apartment would cost him thousands of dollars.
Though the trashing of his property has left him feeling like a hit in the guts, the optimist is looking to rent the space again, hopefully to someone more respectable.
"I've been renting places for 45 years and have never had anybody do this," he said.
"It makes me worry about how many other locals are living in squalor."
The resident artist was due to evacuate yesterday, but as his mess is still there, he has been given an extra day.