This property management company is poorly managed and allows faulty operating practices. They are non-responsive and corrupt.
I moved into an apartment in Waterford Square in November of 2012. The employees seemed pleasant at first and showed me a model apartment laid out like the one I was to rent. When I got the keys, I found my unit to be decrepit, totally unlike the model. Caulk was piped over old, moldy caulk in the bathroom, the walls and doors were covered in several layers of paint. The cabinets were water damaged and the plumbing fixtures were rotting and moldy. Despite the obvious flaws, I was a courteous tenant; I paid rent on time and kept my unit clean. One day in August of 2013, my water would not turn on. I also noticed water seeping up through my bathroom floor. I called the emergency maintenance line and the voice mailbox was full. I emailed the property management in a panic. They banged on my door an hour later and opened it with their keys. They told me the apartment next to me had flooded. I showed them the damage. They told me the water would be on in a few hours. That was not true, however. The water was not on for over 24 hours and I had work the next day. When I was moving out, I noticed serious mold forming in the corners of my closet which is situated next to the apartment that flooded. For these and other reasons, I decided I would not renew my lease which was to end on the 9th. I knew this because the property management had left a flyer on my door telling me so and that I could renew, but the notice included nothing about termination. In late September, I emailed property management to inform them I would not renew. I gave them well over 30 days' notice. They told me I was to give 60 days' notice and I would have to pay a hefty pro-rated amount of rent to fulfill the 60 days even though I was planning to leave well before the 30 days' notice I was giving them. I looked for my lease to verify this and it was nowhere to be found, although I had every other piece of paperwork from the day I signed. I asked for a copy to be emailed to me. They did not respond. I asked two other times after this without a response. Finally, on November 1, 2013, my dad and I went into the office and asked for my lease. I told them I had requested a copy several times. They informed me they did not provide electronic copies. When I asked why no one had responded to my email to tell me I would have to pick up a copy, the woman said she had not seen my correspondence and did not know I had asked. She provided my lease with original signatures which was evidence that they had forgotten to do this in the first place. They did not apologize or provide a compromise for the exorbitant amount of rent they had requested for my apparent "failure to provide sufficient notice" that I did not intend to renew my lease. If I had been provided a copy of my lease, I would have done so, but because they failed to do this when they were supposed to, I had no idea. Even a neighbor of mine informed me she also never received a copy of her lease. These instances and others show that Waterford Square is irresponsible and operates under faulty and shoddy practices. The issues with my apartment posed a health hazard and were due to no fault of my own.
I would like a refund of my pro-rated November rent. I will pay the regular pro-rated amount up to November 9, 2013 when my lease was to end, but I would like a refund of the increased pro-rated rent from November 10, 2013 - November 28, 2013 due to the fact that I never received a copy of my lease which would have informed me of the move-out policy. I also never received a courtesy reminder of the 60-day notice policy which I believe is standard practice for most property management companies.
This is regards to case # xxxxx. First we would like to take the opportunity to apologize to Ms. xxxxx for any inconvenience and dismay you have experienced from Waterford Square. We hate that you no longer want to call Waterford Square home, in the legal binding contract you have signed with us it does state we need a written 60 day notice to vacate. The flyer that was sent to your door was a courtesy reminder about your lease expiring and it also restated our policy about the written 60 day notice in bold letters. Due to fair housing laws we will not be able to change any policies stated in our legal contract between us the company and tenants. Attached to this response, are copies of the flyer sent to your door and your legal lease with Mrs. xxxxx initials and signature. Again we deeply apologize for any misunderstanding.
Final Consumer Response
(The consumer indicated he/she DID NOT accept the response from the business.)
I would like to begin by expressing my complete shock upon reading Waterford's most recent response in reference to my complaint. Waterford's admission of responsibility for causing this apparent confusion clearly reflects their shaky, inconsistent procedures and lack of organization. These faults are further evidenced by the following false assertions made by Waterford which I have quoted and addressed below:
1. "As it states in Ms. xxxxx response she did receive our friendly renewal notice that clearly states we require a written 60 day notice."
This statement is incorrect. In my response, I stated, "With regard to the courtesy reminder that they Waterford supposedly left for me, I did not ever see this document or else I would have noted the policy as I would have done similarly had my lease been provided to me when I had signed it. The only document I ever saw with regard to my lease end date was one that stated my lease was to end on November 9th and if I wished to renew it, there would be an incentive. However, this document did not state any deadlines for move out which is why I assumed 30 days was sufficient (this amount is common procedure in most complexes and is also suggested in NC law)." As I already explained, the notice I received only included my lease termination date and a description of a monetary incentive to renew my lease. This notice did not include any information stating, or even alluding to, a written 60-day notice to officially terminate my lease, as Waterford insists.
2. "We also let all new residents and renewal residents know that it is their responsibility to pick up a signed copy of their lease once management has signed and approved all documents."
This statement is incorrect. Waterford's policy may indeed be to "let all new residents and renewal residents know" that they must pick up their signed lease. Following the signing of my lease and other documents, I did return to the leasing office to retrieve all of the final information associated with my move into Waterford Square Apartments. I was provided a folder with a map of the grounds, a welcome letter, a preliminary breakdown of the move-in costs, and copies of the checks written to Waterford. Copies of the documents which I did receive upon my return to the leasing office will be provided, if necessary. A copy of the lease, however, was never provided to me even though I did, in fact, return to the leasing office (as described above) pursuant to Waterford's purported policy which they allege, as quoted above.
3. "On September 30, 2013 we received a written notice from Ms. xxxxx stating she will be moving out November 9, 2013 when her lease expires. We then responded to her email stating, yet again, that we require 60 days written notice which would push the move out date to November 28, 2013, to which Ms. xxxxx never responded. Please see the attached email correspondence between our office and Ms. xxxxx."
This statement is incorrect. As quoted above, Waterford stated that I did not respond to their email. Waterford even attached a copy of the supposed correspondence. I find it troubling that I also have a copy of this correspondence, which is attached, that includes my response to the very email to which, Waterford alleges, I did not respond. After I received Waterford's response email stating the requirements for my notice to vacate, I searched my records, several times, for a copy of my lease. When I determined that a copy of my lease had never been provided to me, I responded to Waterford's email stating, "Can you please email me a copy of my lease? To my knowledge, one was not provided to me upon move-in. Thank you." As evidenced in the attached copy of the email, I submitted my response on October 16, 2013. It was, in fact, MY email to which a response was never provided. Waterford's statement above is either a blatant lie, or simply evidence of their poor record-keeping and lack of organization.
I believe my responses to the statements submitted by Waterford provide substantial evidence of their negligence which proves that it was not I who failed to follow procedure. Waterford has not taken accountability for their mistakes and obvious fault in this matter. Again, for these reasons as well as those already submitted by me in reference to this complaint, I request that Waterford comply with the desired resolution which I originally submitted.
Final Business Response
We would once again like to apologize to Ms.xxxxx for the confusion and frustration regarding this situation. As it states in Ms. xxxxx response she did receive our friendly renewal notice that clearly states we require a written 60 day notice, which was attached in the last response from Waterford Square Management. We also let all new residents and renewal residents know that it is their responsibility to pick up a signed copy of their lease once management has signed and approved all documents. There is no negligence on Waterford's behalf. The resident failed to abide by company policy with a proper notice to vacate. On September 30, 2013 we received a written notice from Ms. xxxxx stating she will be moving out November 9, 2013 when her lease expires. We then responded to her email stating, yet again, that we require 60 days written notice which would push the move out date to November 28, 2013, to which Ms. xxxxx never responded. Please see the attached email correspondence between our office and Ms. xxxxx. Again, we would like to sincerely apologize for any confusion.