C Tann-Starr's Outside Blog


Is It Really About The Census Or Something Else Entirely...

Is It Really About The Census Or Something Else Entirely...

I've unplugged the house phone. Seems Census Workers have lost their minds. They keep leaving me quality control messages, some of them back to back.  Each one  claims they are  checking the work of  someone  else. Each one claims they did not receive the forms that I filled out, placed in the envelop they provided and mailed to them the same week I received the package. Each one asks for the  same information about the four people living in my house on April 1. 

Did I just do the census four times? Yeah... One by mail, one done by Mike when a worker showed up at our door,  one done by me when a worker showed up at our door and one over the phone.

Quality assurances my a$$.

You people think you're going to receive another answer if you bug members of the household enough. Not true. It's our home. We know who lives here...

Four people live in my apartment. It's a small apartment. I don't have room to hide anyone under the bed. We don't have a pet. We have not had visitors. No one slept over on April1st. It's just us two parents and the two little minions. Got it? Good. I am not answering another Census question. Seriously...

You people need to find the original forms that I sent you.

You need to process the original forms. If you don't find it and process it then you are incompetent.

There. I said it.

Stop calling my house wanting to check the facts because the fact of the matter is you have lost your tiny little minds if you think I am going to call you back because you can't figure out how to count four people.

We are done.

My phone will remain unplugged. I have a funeral to attend and we have better things to do than to listen to your messages about the people living in my household and your need to check the work of Census contractors who are not supposed to take a census when people tell them we turned the paperwork in. 

What I want to know is why they all claim they never received the paperwork. Why do they all have the same lame line? Is it really about the census or something else entirely?

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Comment balloon 25 commentsC Tann-Starr • May 22 2010 08:14AM


Is it possible that this is a scam by someone calling a lot of homes trying to get personal information?

Posted by Bill Travis, Broker/Owner (Captain Bill Realty, LLC) over 10 years ago

"We don't have a pet . . . "

ROFL C! Maybe you should F with them and tell them of the litter of puppies that was born at midnight on . . . April Fools!

Please light a candle for me when you are there . . .

Posted by Candice A. Donofrio, 928-201-4BHC (4242) call/text (Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker) over 10 years ago


Good point you make! " Is it really about the census or something else entirely?..."

Posted by ASHEVILLE REALTY REFERRAL RESOURCE 828-776-0779, CONTACT janeAnne365@gmail.com ( REAL ESTATE REFERRAL NETWORK ) over 10 years ago

I sent mine in quickly so it would be over and done with.

Like Bill said, could be a scam. I thought that if you mailed it in you were done. If you didn't they would come to your door. I didn't hear a thing about calling.


Posted by Missy Caulk, Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate (Missy Caulk TEAM) over 10 years ago

I am getting bugged about a house next door. They won't answer the door when the worker comes, clearly you can see they are home. I told each worker that knocked on MY door about them that I can't help them. Now I will do as my neighbors do, I will not answer the door. Not a problem EXCEPT the dog goes ballistic when someone even thinks about pulling in the driveway.

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 10 years ago

The scams and crap associated with this census is ridiculous. Could it be just so people have a job?

Posted by Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty, Fifteen Years Experience in Brevard County (Bucci Realty, Inc.) over 10 years ago

Very frustrating for sure!    I wrote a post about the beligerance of people toward census workers per a friend of mine's daughter....but seeing your other side of the story really sheds a different light on it....I think I would do the same thing in your situation...I have barely been home in the time since I sent in my paperwork and was visiting my husband out of state for 2 weeks so if they have knocked I wasn't home...and I only have a cell phone so they haven't gotten a hold of me if they were trying!!! 

Good Luck!

Posted by Deborah Byron Leffler BzyBee Real Estate Lady! (Keller Williams Realty Boise) over 10 years ago

Val, you may be on to something because I have never had census messages the likes of these before. My kid had the phone so I was searching their bedroom in an attempt to answer it when the first message came. As soon as it was left, the phone started ringing again and it was the same guy leaving the same message as if he were reading from a script. He left two names to ask for. Then a chick calls about us not turning our paperwork in. They were like the three stooges doing phone ballet. Then one hour later the bell rings and a chick is standing there with the forms. Some neighbor let her in. She goes away then my phone starts ringing about checking workers work. How creepy is that? Very...

Candice, will do. I am still trying to explain it to my kids. Now Noah is telling me he doesn't want to die. I am such a wuss (LOL). What have I done? I don't know how to explain death to the learning disabled... It's their first funeral and very important to me so I may have to call a gal pal to help him with the concept since I am inept at it. Stephen is completely clueless and running around with a Kotex doing a victory dance for opening the package (sigh). It is going to be a very long day...

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 10 years ago

If you already filled it out then ignore them. They could be scam artists. 

Posted by J. Philip Faranda, Broker-Owner (J. Philip Faranda (J. Philip R.E. LLC) Westchester County NY) over 10 years ago

janeAnn, I am not in the habit of giving people a hard time about their job but this is ridiculous.

Missy, the calling is what freaked me out because they are persistent with it. Having a third worker show up at my door is overkill. 

Andrea, the dog above me has been bugging out. I think the worker is sitting on the steps. All of the "H" apartments are next to the steps. That's why we swapped out our peep hole for for a more  expensive one that provides a peripheral view. I can see if someone is on the steps before I open my door. 

Gary, some of these people are very young. The woman who interviewed me still had her school's graduation  ring on her finger (LOL).

Deborah,  I understand our funding is tied into taking a good head count so I am trying to do my part like a good citizen but enough is enough. There is such a thing as overkill. At what point does trying to prove your are efficient turn into proving you are incompetent? Having too many people not know what the other people are doing does not instill confidence in people like me. I get a wee bit cranky when you disturb my naps for no good reason.

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 10 years ago

J Philip, you may be right. Having a clipboard and a cloth census saddlebag doesn't really mean they work there, eh? Hmm...

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 10 years ago

I am continually receiving calls from the census workers also, but on my listings!   Some are even occupied!

Posted by Joan Cox, Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time (House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373) over 10 years ago

Joan, I don't give anyone information about who does or doesn't live at a listing of my firm. You could say I was rude about it. I quote: "Not my job to do your job. This phone is in the do not call registry. Do not call me again. Remove it from your database." The click follows. I don't say another word. The rules state if I put them on notice and ask to be removed they are suppose to remove me. The only business a census taker has is with my household, not the household of another.

Can I be less rude about it? Yes, but then they don't listen to me because I am being nice (LOL).

Would I rather be nice about it? Yes... I always start out nice... the rude part usually comes later when they don't listen to me because I am being nice. :-)

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 10 years ago

That sounds very strange and not at all what I've heard from folks in our area. Good luck, and have a great Saturday!

Posted by Sam White, Integrated Marketing - Bryan College Station, over 10 years ago

Sam, New York City is a very interesting place. There are three empty apartments in my building that have no locks on them but the census workers are leaving forms taped to the doors about getting information from what are clearly vacant apartments. You can look right through the openings in the front doors where the  locks are missing. No people, no shades, no furniture, no locks but plenty of census forms (LOL).

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 10 years ago

Let me put it this way, I love my country but I fear my government...I am not buying into all this census stuff, I am surprised they are not being even more aggressive than they are. Keep that phone unplugged and enjoy your weekend

Posted by Gerry Michaels, GettysburgGerry Social Meida (Glasswork Media Arts) over 10 years ago

My husband is working for the US Census Bureau right now, and I can tell you that they're a little goofed up. I also get calls from Census workers on my listings. Soon as they begin to identify themselves, I interrupt and say What Street? Then I give them the information they want, tell them who was living in the home on April 1, rattle off my own business address and hang up. I mean, I feel for them -- they have a job to do, just like my husband -- but I don't have time for all those freakin' phone calls.

Posted by Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you (RE/MAX Gold) over 10 years ago

C, I have to tell you, I live out in the country, no peep holes here other than the fact there are 4 glass panes in the back door, and don't even go to the front door, LOL. That also has glass, is bolted shut because, I hate to admit it, sometimes when you open it the door falls off in your hands. Not always though, LOL. I can see them and they can see me, clear as day.

I can feel for these people, they are trying to do a good job. But sometimes it really makes you wonder.

I came from a rental this morning, lease signing. There were 2 notices from census workers, the apartment was vacant even prior to April 1. The landlord has told them many times, but they keep coming, LOL. Relentless, like bloodhounds on the trail of something gooooood.

I got 2 phone calls the other day from the same man, a very polite elderly gentleman, calling our office on a listing. I had no idea, couldn't give him any info. The agent is not available. The broker was out all morning up in the middle of nowhere, with no cell service. I told him when she got back she would return his call, took the info myself, then put him in her voicemail. Not an hour later he called again, I couldn't be mean, I mean, he sounded like he was about 100 years old, and he was trying sooooo hard. But ghesh... LOL.

The thing is, because of the climate, we are all afraid of falling victim to scammers. I would hate to find out that I gave info on one of our listings over the phone, then have the house vandalized.

Good luck with your son and the whole death thing, very hard indeed.

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 10 years ago

Yep-Unfortunately counting to 4 for some people is a very difficult thing.  Just like at a 4 way stop!  Good for you for ignoring them.  What ridiculousness! 

Posted by Brenda Mullen, Your San Antonio TX Real Estate Agent!! (RE/MAX Access) over 10 years ago

C.....I guess I'm lucky, we haven''t experienced any of these things.  Good luck!

cosmic cow

Posted by Carra Riley & Declan Kenyon, Helping people Transition at all ages! (Brokers Guild Cherry Creek Ltd) over 10 years ago

Another fine example of our tax dollars at work.  Perhaps change your number to a 900 number so they have to pay for the privilege of calling you? :-)

Posted by Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers, Haven Express @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty (Serving the Greater Phoenix and Scottsdale Metropolitan Area) over 10 years ago

C,  Tony took the words out of my mouth.  I am surprised you kept your cool through these 4 machinations.

Posted by Jane Peters, Los Angeles real estate concierge services (Home Jane Realty) over 10 years ago

Hahahahahaaaaa! Oh, the things I could say here but wont (LOL). It's nice to be employed so I guess I will leave them to sort it all out while I leave my phone unplugged for the weekend. Not having to talk to anyone has been kinda nice. I've been texting like a fiend (LMAO). ;-)

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 10 years ago

We keep having census workers show up at our model homes wanting a form filed out. No one can figure out that people don't live in model homes.

Posted by JL Boney, III, Columbia, SC Real Estate (Coldwell Banker) over 10 years ago

Oh my word... JL, that is too funny (LOL).

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 10 years ago

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