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In Eastern Washington, North Idaho and Montana

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A BBB Accredited Business since

BBB has determined that Douglass Properties meets BBB accreditation standards, which include a commitment to make a good faith effort to resolve any consumer complaints. BBB Accredited Businesses pay a fee for accreditation review/monitoring and for support of BBB services to the public.

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Reason for Rating

BBB rating is based on 16 factors. Get the details about the factors considered.

Factors that raised the rating for Douglass Properties include:

  • Length of time business has been operating.
  • Complaint volume filed with BBB for business of this size.
  • Response to 5 complaint(s) filed against business.
  • Resolution of complaint(s) filed against business.
  • BBB has sufficient background information on this business.

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Customer Complaints Summary Read complaint details

5 complaints closed with BBB in last 3 years | 1 closed in last 12 months
Complaint Type Total Closed Complaints
Advertising/Sales Issues 0
Billing/Collection Issues 4
Delivery Issues 0
Guarantee/Warranty Issues 0
Problems with Product/Service 1
Total Closed Complaints 5

Customer Reviews Summary Read customer reviews

2 Customer Reviews on Douglass Properties
Customer Experience Total Customer Reviews
Positive Experience 1
Neutral Experience 0
Negative Experience 1
Total Customer Reviews 2

Additional Information

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BBB file opened: January 19, 1993 Business started: 01/19/1958 in WA Business started locally: 01/19/1958 Business incorporated: 09/01/2007 in WA
Licensing

This business is in an industry that may require professional licensing, bonding or registration. BBB encourages you to check with the appropriate agency to be certain any requirements are currently being met.

These agencies may include:

Department of Revenue Washington State
Department of Revenue ( Public Records Division), PO Box 47478, Olympia WA 98504-7477
http://dor.wa.gov/content/Home/Default.aspx
Phone Number: 800-647-7706

Type of Entity

Corporation

Contact Information
Principal: Mr. Harlan Douglass, President
Business Category

Property Management Apartments

Alternate Business Names
Center Court Apartments Harlan Douglass Properties Sullivan Court Apartments

Additional Locations

  • 10 E Mayfair Ct

    Spokane, WA 99208

  • 10015 N Colfax Rd  Apt 27

    Spokane, WA 99218 (509) 534-7368

  • 10024 N Colfax Rd

    Spokane, WA 99218

  • 1919 W Pacific Ave

    Spokane, WA 99201 (509) 220-1017

  • 1921 W Pacific Ave

    Spokane, WA 99201

  • 203 E Sharp Ave

    Spokane, WA 99202

  • 2127 W Buckeye Ave

    Spokane, WA 99205

  • 214 E Nora Ave

    Spokane, WA 99207

  • 215 S Conklin Rd

    Spokane Vly, WA 99037 (509) 891-7368

  • 2715 E 36th Ave

    Spokane, WA 99223

  • 2918 N Hogan St

    Spokane, WA 99207

  • 3008 N Napa St

    Spokane, WA 99207

  • 3406 S Grand Blvd

    Spokane, WA 99203 (509) 838-6902

  • 4606 N Assembly St

    Spokane, WA 99205

  • 507 E Nora Ave

    Spokane, WA 99207

  • 511 S Sullivan Rd

    Spokane Vly, WA 99037 (509) 922-9008

  • 539 E Hawthorne Rd

    Spokane, WA 99218 (509) 466-2818

  • 5420 W Barnes Rd

    Spokane, WA 99208 (509) 465-5483

  • 5454 N Driscoll Blvd

    Spokane, WA 99205

  • 6014 N Ruby St

    Spokane, WA 99208

  • 6109 N Lidgerwood St

    Spokane, WA 99208

  • 6109 N Lidgerwood St

    Spokane, WA 99208

  • 6120 N Colton St

    Spokane, WA 99208

  • 6121 N Lidgerwood St

    Spokane, WA 99208

  • 6203 N Lidgerwood St

    Spokane, WA 99208

  • 636 E Magnesium Rd

    Spokane, WA 99208 (509) 467-7368

  • 7007 N Nevada St

    Spokane, WA 99208 (509) 489-4535

  • 711 E Sharp Ave

    Spokane, WA 99202

  • 815 E Rosewood Ave

    Spokane, WA 99208 (509) 489-4260

  • 857 E Lyons Ave

    Spokane, WA 99208

  • 901 E Holyoke Ave

    Spokane, WA 99208

  • 910 E Holyoke Ave

    Spokane, WA 99208

  • 925 E Sharpsburg Ave  Apt 104

    Spokane, WA 99208 (509) 484-7368

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Additional Phone Numbers

  • (509) 464-0623(Phone)
  • (509) 489-1185(Phone)
  • (509) 489-2787(Phone)
  • (509) 999-7368(Phone)
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Complaint Detail(s)

11/5/2013 Problems with Product/Service | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: this company did not do a good job during or after the seven years I lived there. I recently moved out and am not getting any of my deposit back. this seems unfair after seven years of living there. they are charging an obscene amount for cleaning and carpet washing when it was cleaner when i left than it was when I moved in. The carpets needed replaced when i moved in. They had carpet in the kitchen that was stained and very worn at move in and charged me an additional $50 for power scrubbing them when i moved out. When talking with their billing department they were trying to charge me extra for a power bill that I had already paid. One of their agents cut me off while i was talking and when i attempted to explain that i was talking and not interrupting her as is my right to do as a customer she continued to talk over me. Several of my minor repair requests throughout the seven years living there never got taken care of. The information I gave the prior manager when we moved in regarding what was wrong with the apartment was not properly recorded causing them to charge me with things that were already wrong when i moved in. over all the experience with the company was "******" as i told the representative on the phone. I did not call her names or anything just explained how i was feeling and she hung up on me.

Desired Settlement: Train your people better and be nicer to your customers. I spent nearly $35,000 on rent in 7 years at the same location that should count for something.

Business Response:

**** ****** first contacted our billing office on October 7th, 2013 regarding his bill. It was explained to him that his level of cleaning did not meet up to our standards or level of cleaning we require before we allow another tenant to move into the apartment. I have 55 pages of pictures of how he left the apartment, so I confirmed that his cleaning was not enough and the apartment needed to be professionally cleaned.

Also attached as part of his lease agreement is a charge rate sheet that breaks down possible charges upon vacating the apartment and we give residents (including ****) another copy of it when they give their notice to vacate, so we are VERY upfront about the possible charges before they sign the lease and as a reminder when they vacate.  We have a cleaning company come in and clean and we have carpet cleaning companies go in and do the carpets, so we only bill our former tenants the amounts we were billed. 

He also states information he gave the prior manager when he moved in regarding what was wrong with the apartment was not recorded. At move in our Manager does a Possession Property Condition Report with them as they go through the apartment and he signed off on it acknowledging and agreeing to the condition of the apartment, so I am not sure where that could be incorrect and he never mentioned any of that on his phone call. Again he did sign agreeing the conditions were true and correct.

As for the **** Power bill, when a tenant moves out and **** Power is not paid they bill us, so per the terms and conditions of their lease we also forward those charges on to them and pay the ****. If we don't pay it, **** Power will put a lein on our property and that is NOT how we do business. On October 7th when our billing person finished talking to ****, she contacted **** and they stated their was still a balance due and that **** did not pay it as he claimed he had.

Today when he called all he wanted to do is spout off, yell, cuss and was very rude. I tried to explain to him that **** previously told us it was un-paid and tried to tell him another employee was calling **** as we were talking to see if she could verify if it was now paid or not and he would not listen. If someone calls and asks questions, we have the right to be able to speak and answer the questions, but **** was so rude, he would let me start talking and then he would interupt and not let me speak, so I did speak over him to try to get him to realize we were trying to confirm it for him while he was on the line, and in fact we did confirm it was JUST paid. When he finally started listening he was aware it was confirmed and he was told that amount would be credited and it was credited and he was emailed a new statement. So I feel we did handle his request and was able to reduce his bill, even though he did not try to co-operate with us or our employees.

All that said, we have a ZERO Tolerance to cussing and do not have to put up with an abusive caller. I advised him I would disconnect the call if he continued and did just that. Maybe **** should learn how to respect people trying to help him on the phone and learn to let them actually answer questions asked, so he would know it was being resolved. Finally, if we didn't do anything, I do not believe someone that acts in the manner he did today on the phone would have stayed living in our apartment for seven years. And yes I do confirm he lived there for seven years, so he just wanting to complain because he isn't getting his deposit back, but again with 55 pages of dirt and damages I feel our billing person did a good job at keeping his costs down due to the seven years he lived there and only charged him minimal amounts for what needed done to make the apartment rentable for a new tenant.

His comment of his desired settlement of train your people better and be nicer. I can only say our employees are not here to put up with his abusive behavior, nor do they have to put up with any foul languange. Our employees are very well trained and he must not have had a problem with the employees to stay seven years.

Below is a break down of charges on his account and believe after a review of them you will also find they are NOT excessive.

10/3/2013  Pictures & Developing 7.06   7.06 448534
10/3/2013  Apt. Cleaning 135.00   142.06 448535
10/3/2013  Extra Cleaning 25.00   167.06 448536
10/3/2013  Carpet Cleaning 65.00   232.06 448537
10/3/2013  Rescreen D/R screen 36.96   269.02 448538
10/3/2013  Repl missing entry light cover 11.80   280.82 448539
10/3/2013  Power Scrub Carpets 50.00   330.82 448548
10/4/2013  **** Past due amount and current 70.78   401.60 448557
10/4/2013  :Security Deposit credit (300.00)   101.60 448558
10/24/2013  Reverse vera charges was paid per **** Water and Power (70.78)   30.82 449363

Sincerely

****** ****

Collections Manager

Douglass Properties

Consumer Response: [To assist us in bringing this matter to a close, you must give us a reason why you are rejecting the response. If no reason is received your complaint will be closed Administratively Resolved]

****** ******** ******:

I have reviewed the response made by the business in reference to complaint ID *******, and have determined that this does not resolve my complaint.  For your reference, details of the offer I reviewed appear below.

they wrote a letter with blatant lies

the bill was paid on October 5th they did not check with **** at that time. The representative did not even attempt to tell me that another employee was contacting ****. She interrupted me and then told me to not interrupt her. If they contacted them on the 7th and the bill was paid on the 5th why was it not taken care of already?

I did ask a question and it was not answered i asked for a verbal break down of my bill they refused to give it. I have not received a new statement as they say i have. They put my bill in their response to the complaint, that is the first i have seen of the revised statement. The charges are excessive cleaning an empty apartment should cost less than $50. I was not an abussive caller for saying that i felt the company waqs treating me "*******" i was trying to describe how i was feeling with the lack of good service during the entire seven years i lived in that apartment. As far as why i stayed seven years is i could not afford to move i burrowed a large sum on money from a family member who told me they wanted me out of there so much they were willing to wait as long as it took for me to pay back.


Regards,

****** ******




Business Response:

We emailed **** ****** the revised statement right after speaking to him at the same email address he has listed on his complaint, so if he did not get it from that, he might need to check his junk mail as sometimes mail does get rejected depending on how he has his email set up and that is not any fault of ours or something we can control in any way. Also I might point out it was the same day he filed the complaint and the same day we responded to his first complaint, so maybe that is why he didn't see the one from us too. Either way, he was advised of his balance on the phone and emailed an updated statement.

Everything I stated in my first response still stands in this response, so I don't think their is a need for me to repeat all of that information and our stand again. It is obvious a company can not please all people at all times and he is apparently one that we will never please. Also I am not sure what his point was with the comment that he stayed because he couldn't afford to move out and he borrow money to move in from a family member that didn't care how long it took him to pay them back, they just wanted him out of their place, but it does show maybe we are not the only ones **** ****** has a problem with or is unreasonable with.

As for my first response not resolving his issue, I believe all he said other than complaining is that we need to train our people to be nicer, so I am not sure what response he wants from his complaints.

Sincerely

****** ****

BBB's Final Determination: Business offered a resolution. Consumer did not pursue further with BBB and the matter was assumed to be resolved

12/13/2012 Billing/Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: I lived at the Lusitano apartments for 3 1/2 years and moved out the end of August 2012. In April of 2012, I paid rent on the 2nd day of the month which resulted in a $72.50 late fee. Upon finding out about this late fee, I called the Lusitano officer manager (*******) and was told that the late fee would be waived and to not worry about it since up until that date I had never had any late payments. I was also told someone would contact me if there were any questions or the fee could not be waived. When I moved out the end of August 2012, the late fee was still on my account balance and I again inquired about it and management said they would look into it and let me know if it was still going to be an issue. Again, I was informed that there would no longer be a late fee on my account. I received my final bill in the mail a couple months later with the late fee still on my account. I called about it and was told by the collections manager that since there was a late fee waived back in September 2011, they would not waive an additional late fee in April of 2012. I had never been late up until that 2nd day of April, 2012. In September of 2011, the Lusitano manager had put my check in the "late" pile and when I received a late fee and called her on it, she apologized and said they incorrectly put my check in the "late" pile. She told me she knew I had paid on time and that there was no late fee. When they reversed the late fee off of my account, they did not make notes, therefore it showed up as a late fee reversal; not the mistake that was the apartment manager's that she had to correct. My frustration lies in the fact that I was not late in September of 2011 and as an excellent resident of 3 1/2 years, my one-time late fee in April 2012 should have been waived due when management told me it would be. I do not feel that the late fee of $72.50 is justifiable.

Desired Settlement: I would like Douglass Properties to honor their commitment in waiving the late fee of $72.50. I was told numerous times that the fee would be waived and I relied on that. I would like my balance to reflect $0 owed.

Business Response: ******* ***** was on a lease agreement that has the clause "rent is due on the first and will be considered late on the 2nd" and that "tenant will be charged the 10% late fee if rent is paid after the 1st of the month." This can be found on page 1 section 5 of her lease agreement. I spoke to ******* ***** on several occasions regarding this part of her lease and she acknowledges she paid her rent late and was aware of the late fee. After the first conversation, where she claimed the Manager ******* told her it would be waived, I contacted our Resident Manager ******* ******* and asked her for her side of the conversation. ******* ******* response was as followed: "

"she had asked if we would be willing to remove it because she was great resident for almost 4 years and never paid late, I told her I would look into giving her a 1 time oops! But then I also let her know when she moved out that since it was in April and she asked for the fee to be taken off in August, that it was most likely going to still be a charge, so she may not get it waived."   Then even though I received this information I contacted ******* *******'s boss **** to see if she was willing to waive the late fee and she stated "No she was not willing to waive the fee, due to the fact a waiver was done in September 2011 and our policy is to only allow one waiver every twelve month period, so she would not be given another waiver until after September 2012."

 

Our stand is based on the facts of ******* *****'s account, which are clear we received her September 2011 rent received on September 2nd 2011 and we waived the late fee on September 6, 2011 and then her April 2012 rent payment was received on April 2, 2012, thus only 7 months after a late fee was waived on her account, and the Resident Manager states she did not guarantee it would be waived, but stated she would look into it. Our decision is also based on page 6 section 41 of the lease that states "neither the landlord or any representative can make any promises outside of the written lease contract" and due to Collection Rules & Laws and the Landlord Tenant Rules & Laws we must treat all tenants the same and not show preference, so we must stick to our policy of one late fee waiver per twelve month period.  I have personally discussed this with ******* ***** numerous times and she does not want to accept her responsibility for paying late, so also per the terms of her lease agreement her account was turned over to an outside collection agency on 11/21/12 due to her lack of payment or refusal to pay.

Thank you

****** ****

Collection Manager

Douglass Properties dba The Lusitano Apartments

###-###-####

collections@spokane-rentals.com

Consumer Response:

[To assist us in bringing this matter to a close, you must give us a reason why you are rejecting the response. If no reason is received your complaint will be closed Administratively Resolved]

Better Business Bureau:

I have reviewed the response made by the business in reference to complaint ID 9310156, and have determined that this does not resolve my complaint.  For your reference, details of the offer I reviewed appear below.

I do not agree with the way Douglass Properties is handling this matter. I was NEVER late in September 2011 and if they were to follow their own policy, they would reverse the April 2012 late fee due to the one free waiver per year. I have attached a letter from them where they gave me 10 days from November 14, 2012 to pay or dispute the claim. I have disputed it and after reading Douglass Properties' response to my complaint, the manager said she turned me over to an outside collections agency on November 21st. She did not even grant me the full ten days to pay or respond. They are being dishonest with this claim and my excellent tenancy of 3 1/2 years should prove that I would never ignore a late fee for months like they are claiming.

Regards,

******* *****



 

Business Response:

Responds to complaint id 9310156 rejection.

At this point, I feel we are at a stand still and further disputing this debt with Ms. ***** has not achevied anything. in my opinion as a debt collector and the person Ms. ***** has spoken too, I believe Ms. ***** from the very beginning does not want to accept our answer or the fact everything I have stated is all documented on her account and more importantly documented by the lease agreement she signed, which is a legal binding contract.

We did give her 10 days to respond or dispute, but when I had the conversation with her, she didn't just dispute the debt, she responded with a flat out refusal to pay the amount owed. We handle refusals to pay by either filing legal action or turning them over to outside collections, based on whichever is most cost effective for both our company and our previous tenant, yet still affords us the right of collecting the debt owed to us. Had she offered a solution to possibly resolve the issue or acted in a manner which would indicate she wanted to try to come to an equal resolve of the matter it would be different story, but from the beginning she has refused to pay and seems she just wants us to write off her balanace or she wants to avoid the debt or delay her responsibility to pay according to the terms and conditions of her lease. Mrs. *****'s length of tenancy does not change the validity of the debt owed to our company, but it is appreciated none the less, plus the length of tenancy does not prove that she would or would not ignore the late fee.   

Again, we view this as a valid fee, based on the legal binding contract ******* ***** signed with Douglass Properties. A valid late fee was waived on her account in September 2011, so the April 2012 late fee is a valid fee and is due to Douglass Properties. We are not required to waive any of the fees, but did waive the September 2011 fee as a courtesy. The result of her actions of refusing to pay, is what resulted in the status of her account being turned over for outside collections. Had she remitted payment within the ten days or responded with just a dispute letter or conversation, she would have been given the ten days and being that it was already turned to collections, I would have pulled it back from outside collections, plus when we turn accounts over to outside collections, it takes them time to set up the account in their system and contact the debtor, so by the time that is done the ten days would be past. We have responded to each one of Ms. *****'s contact's to us with why this debt is valid and payment of this debt is due. Finally, unless we remove the balance on her account Ms ***** will never be satisfied with our response and we are not willing to remove a second fee on her account.

Thank you again for your time.

****** ****

Douglass Properties    

 

BBB's Final Determination: Business offered a resolution. Consumer did not pursue further with BBB and the matter was assumed to be resolved

7/14/2012 Billing/Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: This complaint is in no way against the property agent, ****** *******, who was always been friendly and helpful. That being said, however, Douglass Properties has demonstrated shady business practices on more than one occasion. While a student at Gonzaga University in Spokane Washington, I rented though them on two separate occasions. Both times, upon ending my lease, I received billing statements saying I owed money for damages. As part of my lease agreement, I paid a $350 non-refundable "redecorating" fee which is supposed to be used to to cover "repairs necessary to restore the property to its pre-lease condition." The first year, I was charged for drip pans and received the bill 3 months later. This past year, I received a statement saying I owed the company $50 in touch up painting, and $6 to replace two outlet covers. When I called a representative about these charges, I was told that the "redecorating" fee covers basic repairs and painting for the apartment. What I don't understand is why my $350 fee does not cover these costs. In addition, these apartments were built in the 60s and have never been updated. My apartments were always well maintained and the apartment manager even made a comment about how clean they were upon vacating both premises. I feel the company takes advantage of college students who are no longer in the area and have no recourse in dealing with these specious charges.

Desired Settlement: I want the bogus charges dropped from my account.

Business Response:

Response to complaint #9111292

****** ***** called me on July 3rd, 2012 wanting to know why she is charged for touch up painting when she paid a redecorating fee. I explained to her the terms of the lease shown on page 19 of the lease, which is the "Charge Rate Sheet" where under # 1 "painting the walls", it explains she would be responsible for full painting or the touch up painting if she lived in the apartment less than a year, which she only lived their for nine months. I also explained on page 2 paragraph 10 where it explains any damages on the vacating property condition report that is not on the possession property condition report when they move out would be their responsiblity for the cost of fixing or replacing.  I further explained on page 3 paragraph 17 explains they are responsible for the Utilities until the last day of the month they reside in the apartment, which is their case is the last day of the lease. I have attached a copy of her lease, so you can see these terms yourself.

Our position stands that we charged per the terms and condition of the lease agreement she signed with our company and therefore all the charges are valid and stand. We offer payment plans if that will help them out with paying their bill of $69.75. As for her insulting accusation that we "demonstrated shady business practices" and 'our company takes advantage of college students" we have 34 apartment communities with over 1694 apartments, by LAW we treat ALL residents per the terms and conditions of the lease agreement they sign regardless of age, sex, creed, ect and since she previously lived with us she should have already known she would be charged for damages, painting and un-paid utilities per the lease agreement, but our Apartment Manager explains all this information to them when they sign the rental agreement and they are given a copy of the lease with all the terms. 

It is unfortunate that she is trying to evade her financial responsibilites per the lease, but again we are willing to work with her on payments.

Thank you 

****** **** 

Collection Manager 

###-###-####  

BBB's Final Determination: Business offered a resolution. Consumer did not pursue further with BBB and the matter was assumed to be resolved

1/12/2012 Billing/Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: On September, 3rd 2011, I moved out of Parc Grand Apartments, **** ** ***** **** *** ***** Spokane, WA 99203. I thoroughly cleaned the apartment with a number of people helping me. When I did the walk-through with the apartment manager she said the apartment was left in fine condition and did not indicate in any way or ask for any monies towards any cleaning or damages. She signed the paper showing that no damages had occurred during my tenancy. Unfortunately, two months later I received a bill from the apartment owners (Douglass Properties) asking for $80.00 to cover additional cleaning costs. I dispute this. In the invoice they included from Dynamos Multi-Tasking, they itemized the following: "2 Bedroom unit. Kitchen very dirty. Dirty handprints every where including inside the refridgerator and drawers." This statement is not true and is unsubstantiated. There were no dirty handprints left on the kitchen when we left. There was also an additional charge from Clean Rite Hi-tech carpet & Upholstery Care for stain removal. According to the company there is no way for me to dispute this and they plan to send my account to an outside colletion agency. I do not have photographs of the state I left the apartment but I do have 4 eyewitnesses, who all agree that the apartment was left in stellar condition. I would have been happy to pay the additional money if needed, if the manager had pointed out what was still dirty when we did the final walk-through. As it was, I thought it had been taken care of. Also, I have no way to know who was in the apartment between the time I left and the time the apartment was cleaned. I don't feel that these charges are fair.

Desired Settlement: I wish for Douglass Properties to drop these charges, cease efforts to collect, and send me a written confirmation to that effect.

Business Response: I am in receipt of your letter of complaint from Ms. *********** dated 01/03/2012.  I offer the following explanation for the activity on the account of Ms. ***** ***********.

First, we did receive a dispute letter from Ms. *********** dated December 22th, 2011, this letter was mailed to and received in our corporate office on December 27th, 2011. I sent her a response letter on December 28th, 2011 with the invoices attached that we received from our vendors validating the charges. I also received a call on December 30, 2011 from her father John *********** whom was very abusive and hostile. I explained to him since he was not on the lease I needed something in writing from Ms. *********** authorizing us to discuss her account with him and he put her on the phone. At that time, I again explained the two charges and confirmed she received my letter and copies of the invoices attached.

Ms. *********** was on a lease agreement, which is a legal binding contract in which discusses damages or cleaning needed would be charged to the resident. Although she did not damage the apartment it was not clean enough for our standards so an apartment cleaning vendor was called in to clean the apartment and a carpet cleaning company was called in to clean a stain in the bedroom and kitchen. Both vendors’ invoices were attached to my response letter to Ms. *********** and both are in this attachment to you.   

The lease agreement signed by Ms. *********** clearly stated in the lease agreement on page 2, section 10 regarding the property condition report and specifically regarding the possession property condition report and vacating property condition report that she is responsible for any damages and cleaning above and beyond normal wear and tear and normal cleaning, so as you can see from the invoices we did not charge her the basic apartment cleaning of $150.00 that we were billed, we only billed her the extra cleaning of $50.00. As for the carpet cleaning again as you will see on the bill we did not charge her the basic cleaning of $65.00 we only charged her the $30.00 extra for the 70% stain removal, in which both of the charges are supported by the vacating property condition report.

As for Ms. ***********’s statement of not knowing whom may have entered the apartment after she left it, she was present when the walk through was done and she signed it. So if anything had been done that was not supported by that vacating property condition report she would not have been billed for it. On the vacating property condition report where it discusses the living home, kitchen and second bedroom carpets it states “need shampooed” and although it is unfortunate that is not more clear, when it needs shampooed and our vendor goes out and cannot get the stains out with normal shampooing they do the extra stain removing and that is a tenant charge, our Apartment Managers do not always know if the stains can be removed with normal cleaning or if extra cleaning is needed until they see the results our vendor gets with the normal cleaning. In most of the areas on the vacating property condition report it is marked NC which per the legend on the bottom it means Needs Cleaned, which also supports the extra cleaning charges from the Apartment Cleaning vendor.

Our intent is not to have unhappy previous residents as we also look at them as possible prospective residents for the future.  However with that said, I have reviewed this account I find the charges are all valid per the terms and conditions of the lease agreement she signed. Therefore, although I understand Ms. *********** would like this debt to go away, in my opinion it is a valid debt owed to Douglass Properties by Ms. ***********. I litigate cases such as this on a weekly base and feel very confident we would prevail in court. So in closing I would just like to add we first billed her on 11/16/11 giving 14 days to remit payment, then sent a second bill and notice on 12/8/11 giving until 12/29/11 to remit payment and finally sent the dispute response letter on 12/28/11 giving her until 1/11/12 to remit payment, so although I am not sure why she keeps stalling when she has been provided the vendor invoices, I do want to make it clear we will pursue this debt to the full extent allotted by Washington State law and her contract, which states she will also be responsible for legal fees and/or collection fees if those actions are needed to collect the debt. Therefore payment is expected to be received from her in our office no later than 5:00 pm on 1/11/12 for her to avoid further action and additional costs. To resolve this matter, she can mail us a check or money order or have someone drop a payment off to us at our corporate office, or we accept debit/credit card payments over the phone with a 5% transaction fee. Should she wish to resolve this account she is more than welcome to call me at ###-###-####.

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Sincerely,

****** ****  - Collections Manager

Douglass Properties, Center Court Apartments,

and Crosspointe Apartments

 

*** * ******** ****** ******* ** *****

phone ###-###-####

fax ###-###-####

BBB's Final Determination: Business offered a resolution. Consumer did not pursue further with BBB and the matter was assumed to be resolved

12/29/2011 Billing/Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: I co-signed a one year lease agreement for an apartment. When one year expired, the property management did not require the tenant to sign a new lease but simply entered into a month-month agreement. No changes or concerns where discussed at that time with the tenant. The tenant continued renting for six months at which time the tenant vacated the property, paying a full month rent, cleaning the apartment and leaving the keys with the managment office on the 16th of the month. All power service had already been closed and transfered to a new location as of the 12th. The $500 deposit was not returned as both the tenant and myself understood it was for cleaning and repairing expected wear on the property. Two months elapsed and then both the tenant and myself received an invoice for cleaning and damages totalling $454.64. The invoice includes charges from the power company for dates after the tenant vacated, cleaning and minor repairs. However, the invoice does not show where the damage deposit was applied or even show as being a credit to the account. I left messages with the property but received no call backs. I then received a second copy of the invoice showing I needed to submit in writing my dispute within 21 days. I did this and four days later received a "revised" statement with a total of $300 additional charges for "month to month fee" of $50 per month. My complaint is this: as a co-signer for the one year lease, I do not feel responsible for any fees left accruing the account. However, I also feel this property is attempting to scam the ex-tenant for fees that should not be applied. She paid the $500 deposit, this covers the $454.64 of cleaning and repairs. At no time during the six months of the month-month period did the property manager notify tenant of additional rental fees. Nor were additional rental fees discussed at the time of her returning the keys. The fee was not included on the original invoice but only added after my letter stating the one year lease was over.

Desired Settlement: I feel the best way to resolve this dispute is for the property manager to apply the $500 deposit to the original invoice for the minor repairs and cleaning of the apartment. All additional fees need to be dropped as this was not part of the agreement and myself excluded from the dispute as my obligations have been met.

Business Response:

<v:path o:extrusionok="f" gradientshapeok="t" o:connecttype="rect"><o:lock v:ext="edit" aspectratio="t">                        COLLECTIONS DIVISION

  *** * ******** *** ******** ** 99208

December 20, 2011    

Better Business Bureau

Attn: **** ********, Resolution Moderator

152 S Jefferson, Suite #200

Spokane, WA  99201

Re:       Ms ********* ********** case ID 8842500

Dear Mr. ********:

I am in receipt of your letter of complaint from Ms. ********** dated 12/12/2011.  I offer the following explanation for the activity on the account in which Ms. ********** is a co-signer for Ms. ******* ********.

First, we did receive a dispute letter from Ms. ********** dated December 6th, 2011, this letter was mailed to and received in our corporate office on December 8th, 2011, so the complaint she made with your office on December 12, 2012 only four days later, did not give us time to respond to her directly and when I received the complaint from your office, chose to respond to you and send her a copy of this response and to Ms. ********.

Ms. ********** has grossly misstated the lease agreement, which is a legal binding contract in which she and Ms. ******** both signed on February 12th, 2010. She is correct that it is a one year lease. However, the terms of this agreement page 1, section 4 was not only from March 1st, 2010 to February 28, 2011, it also has a clause to automatic revert to a month to month term with an additional $50.00 per month fee and is noted as a month to month fee, if a new lease is not negotiated when the lease term ends and clearly states it would be effective immediately without further or additional notice. It is explained at the time of the signing of the lease to the tenant and all co-signers that they are responsible until the tenant completes a new lease and qualifies on their own or moves out of the apartment and pays all fees associated with the account. Ms. ******** never completed or tried to qualify for the apartment on her own, so the original contract stands as the legal binding contract between all parties. We are under no obligation to require our tenants to sign a new lease, however obviously it is to our benefit to have tenants in a lease with terms, so we are guaranteed how long they will be staying in our complex.

As for the other issues, Ms. ******** and Ms ********** did not pay a deposit of any amount on their account, so her stating there was a $500.00 deposit is totally false. As for the utilities the terms and conditions of the contract states they are responsible until the end of the month of residency for both rent and utilities and any damages to the apartment, which is what we have charged for. Plus the “20 day notice to vacate” given by Ms. ******** also states she would be vacating on August 31st, 2011, so we hold her responsible for the rent and utilities until August 31st, 2011.

As for the damages not being part of the original agreement, that too is a gross misstatement of the lease agreement, as it is clearly stated in the lease agreement on page 2, section 10 regarding the property condition report and specifically regarding the possession property condition report and vacating property condition report. As for the lapse of time from move out to the previous tenant being billed, I have explained to Ms. ******** that the vacating property condition report was done as soon as she vacated and then there is time for us to get our vendors scheduled to go in and do the necessary cleaning and/or repairs and then time for them to bill us, however it all still gets verified with the vacating property condition report that is done right after the tenant moves out. 

Our intent is not to have unhappy previous residents as we also look at them as possible prospective residents for the future.  With that said, I have reviewed this account I find the charges are all valid per the terms and conditions of the lease agreement they signed and the charges stand. We are willing to take monthly payments from them as we understand it is not always possible to pay off a balance of this size at one time. Should they wish to resolve this account with a payment plan they are more than welcome to call me at ###-###-####.

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Sincerely,

****** ****  - Collections Manager

Douglass Properties, Center Court Apartments,

and Crosspointe Apartments

*** * ******** ******

Spokane WA 99208

phone ###-###-####

fax ###-###-####

cc/ ********* ********** & ******* ********

BBB's Final Determination: Business offered a resolution. Consumer did not pursue further with BBB and the matter was assumed to be resolved

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