A Melbourne woman who rented her home for over two decades was shocked when her landlord called to say she can keep it.
Jane Sayner started hunting for a home to rent over 23 years ago and she never dreamed something like this could happen to her.
She spotted a two-bedroom unit with a garden in St Albans, north-west of Melbourne, that looked just perfect and she has no regrets about moving into the neighbourhood.
For more than two decades, she paid $200 per week, most of the time in cash as her landlord, John Perrett, preferred.
The elderly man, who used to be a pharmacist, but was also an active community member and a philanthropist, never asked for more money. He was a good landlord, Sayner explained.
When the woman moved into the house, there was nothing in the yard. But she, a garden lover, planted numerous plants in it, making it a beautiful, colorful garden.
A few years ago, while Perrett had already moved into a nursing home, battling Parkinson’s disease, he called her and told her the most unbelievable news. She was getting the house for free.
“I got a phone call from him one day and he said, ‘I want you to talk to my solicitor, he is here at the moment and can you give him your full name because I’m leaving you the unit’,” the woman recalled in an interview with 9NOW.
Sayner couldn’t believe her ears. She even questioned herself- she thought maybe she had misunderstood something or misheard John’s words.
But it was true. Perrett, after more than 20 years of seeing how much this woman loved his property, decided to let her have it without paying anything.
Sayner was so happy to finally have her own house. This would be very helpful and it would actually make retirement possible for her.
Up until then, she still had to work to make ends meet. But having her own house helped her save some money and eventually retire.
But this house was not all the man had. Perrett, who passed away in September 2020 when he was 86, proved to be a millionaire, although Sayner knew nothing about it.
John Perrett, who was an only child without close relatives, never got married. He worked for years as a local pharmacist, and then he eventually sold the pharmacy and invested the proceeds well in shares.
This move seems to have brought him a lot of money. So much so, that the local hospital inherited from him more than $19 million.
“Words can almost never describe how unselfish and incredibly generous (Perrett was),” Professor Nigel Toussiant from the Royal Melbourne Hospital said.
Perrett received a kidney transplant at the Royal Melbourne Hospital some three decades ago. It seems that he had such a positive experience with them that he wanted to help the hospital.
“That was a life-saving gift, I guess, to take him off dialysis and he was obviously grateful for the care that he received, for all the doctors and nursing and medical staff to look after him at the Royal Melbourne Hospital,” Toussiant told 9Now.
As for Sayner, she’s now retired and living it up in her garden thanks to Perrett’s kindness.
“I thank him still, every day of my life … just privately, I say, ‘thanks John’,” Sayner said.
Images source: Youtube