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Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

Phone: (509) 465-9052 910 N Washington St Ste 107, Spokane, WA 99201 View Additional Email Addresses http://www.madisonspokane.com/index.htm



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Description

Property management of rental property owned by private rental income property owners (landlords).


BBB Accreditation

A BBB Accredited Business since

BBB has determined that Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc. 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.

BBB accreditation does not mean that the business' products or services have been evaluated or endorsed by BBB, or that BBB has made a determination as to the business' product quality or competency in performing services.


Reason for Rating

BBB rating is based on 13 factors. Get the details about the factors considered.

Factors that affect the rating for Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc. include:

  • Length of time business has been operating
  • Response to 19 complaint(s) filed against business
  • Resolution of complaint(s) filed against business


Customer Complaints Summary Read complaint details

19 complaints closed with BBB in last 3 years | 4 closed in last 12 months
Complaint Type Total Closed Complaints
Advertising/Sales Issues 1
Billing/Collection Issues 7
Delivery Issues 0
Guarantee/Warranty Issues 0
Problems with Product/Service 11
Total Closed Complaints 19

Additional Complaint Information

BBB files indicate that this business has a pattern of complaints concerning failing to respond to issues reported by consumers and not allowing consumers to accompany the business during the final move out inspection. Further, BBB files indicate that this business does not issue a refund of deposit within 14 days of a tenant move out.


This business has responded to BBB's inquiry regarding this pattern of complaints.

The response was determined to be satisfactory to BBB and fully addressed and provided an explanation for all concerns raised by consumers in complaints filed with BBB




Below are excerpts from the business' response to BBB regarding BBB's inquiry.


* Regarding concerns from consumers about this business failing to respond to reported issues with property. -

Madison responded that they "encourage and welcome communication." They continue to state that in order "to prevent 'he said, she said" type problems, we require all disputes (and most other types of communication) be in writing." It was explained in their response to BBB that this business requires written communication to eliminate hearsay and handle only facts regarding disputes and other communications.


* Regarding concerns from consumers about this business not allowing consumers to accompany the business during the final move out inspection - 


Madison stated in its response to BBB that prior to move-in of any new tenants, photos of the property (estimated at over 200) are taken documenting the condition of the property. A CD with all photos taken and a move-in report are provided to the consumer upon move-in for their documentation.

On move-out of the tenant, the business states that to prevent any conflict and distraction or delay from the tenant, the business does not accompany the tenant on the final walk through. Instead, the business conducts the final move-out inspection independently of the tenant. After the inspection is completed, any repairs to the property not associated with normal 'wear-and-tear' are repaired. The cost of these repairs are charged against the tenants' security deposit. "The tenant is sent a final accounting sheet listing all deductions from the deposit line-by-line and is given copies of all receipts. We even provide before and after photos if requested."


* Regarding concerns from consumers about the business not providing a refund of deposit within 14 days of a tenant move out - 

Madison responded to this concern, referencing the Revised Code of Washington (RCW) 59.18.280. According to the state of Washington's website "Within fourteen days after the termination of the rental agreement and vacation of the premises... the landlord shall give a full and specific statement of the basis for retaining any of the deposit together with the payment of any refund due the tenant under the terms and conditions of the rental agreement." 

Simply stated, a landlord must either provide a full refund of a tenant's security deposit unless a full and specific statement is provided to the tenant stating why the landlord is withholding all of, or part of the security deposit. This notice must be postmarked no later than 14 days after the final move-out.





BBB highly recommends consumers review the Washington State Attorney General Office's resources prior to leasing any property in Washington State to understand a tenant's rights in Washington. Consumers may find this information here.

BBB also recommends consumers reviewing the following tips prior to and after renting property in Washington State:

* Upon move-in, fully document and take pictures of, the condition of the property being rented, ensuring that any damages are well documented and submit a copy of the report to the landlord for their files;
* Correspond with the landlord in writing whenever repairs or issues occur with the property to ensure every communication and attempt to communicate are documented;
* On move-out, fully document and take pictures of the property after thoughtfully cleaning, marking any damage or additional wear and tear that is different from the move-in report, and submit a copy of the report to the landlord for their files;
* Ensure that you provide a new address to the landlord upon move-out for future correspondence from the landlord regarding the security deposit.


Customer Reviews Summary Read customer reviews

22 Customer Reviews on Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.
Customer Experience Total Customer Reviews
Positive Experience 13
Neutral Experience 0
Negative Experience 9
Total Customer Reviews 22

Additional Information

BBB file opened: March 16, 1993 Business started: 03/05/1984 in WA Business started locally: 03/05/1984 Business incorporated 03/05/1984 in WA
Licensing, Bonding or Registration

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

Real Estate Licensing-WA
Olympia WA
http://www.dfi.wa.gov/cs
Phone Number: (360) 664-6500

Washington Secretary of State, Corporations Divison
801 Capitol Way South, P.O. Box 40234, Olympia WA 98504-0234
http://www.secstate.wa.gov/corps
Phone Number: 360-753-7115
Fax Number: 360-664-8781

Type of Entity

Corporation

Business Management
Mr. Eric Bessett, President Mr. Ronald W. Dickerson, President
Contact Information
Principal: Mr. Eric Bessett, President
Principal: Mr. Ronald W. Dickerson, President
Business Category

Property Management Real Estate Rental Service Real Estate

Alternate Business Names
R. W. Dickerson Management and Company, Inc

Customer Review Rating plus BBB Rating Summary

Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc. has received 0 out of 5 stars based on 0 Customer Reviews and a BBB Rating of A.

BBB Customer Review Rating plus BBB Rating Overview

Additional Locations

  • 910 N Washington St Ste 107

    Spokane, WA 99201

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BBB Customer Review Rating plus BBB Rating Overview


BBB Customer Reviews Rating represents the customers opinions of the business. The Customer Review Rating is based on the number of positive, neutral and negative customer reviews posted that are calculated to produce a score.

Customer Review Experience Value
Positive Review 5 points per review
Neutral Review 3 points per review
Negative Review 1 point per review

BBB letter grades represent the BBB's opinion of the business. The BBB grade is based on BBB file information about the business. In some cases, a business' grade may be lowered if the BBB does not have sufficient information about the business despite BBB requests for that information from the business.
Details

BBB Letter Grade Scale

BBB Rating Value
A+ 5
A 4.66
A- 4.33
B+ 4
B 3.66
B- 3.33
C+ 3
C 2.66
C- 2.33
D+ 2
D 1.66
D- 1.33
F 1
NR -----
Star Rating scale

  Average Score
5 stars 5.00
4.5 stars 4.50-4.99
4 stars 4.00-4.49
3.5 stars 3.50-3.99
3 stars 3.00-3.49
2.5 stars 2.50-2.99
2 stars 2.00-2.49
1.5 stars 1.50-1.99
1 star 0-1.49

BBB Customer Review Rating plus BBB Rating is not a guarantee of a business' reliability or performance, and BBB recommends that consumers consider a business' BBB Rating and Customer Review Rating in addition to all other available information about the business. If the BBB Rating is NR then only Customer Reviews are used for the Star Rating.

Complaint Detail(s)

9/9/2016 Problems with Product/Service | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: The issue I am addressing today is lack customer service response to resolve an issue Madison is legally required to address. I leased a home through Madison for the past three years. At the end of my lease, Madison held my entire deposit, and actually charged me more. The list of charges they sent me (1) appeared inflated and unreasonable, (2) was not specific as required by Washington State Law under RCW 59.18.280, and (3) included charges for early vacate even though I paid through the end of my lease and vacating early was overwhelmingly to the benefit of Madison and the property owner. I have attempted to contact Madison multiple times to resolve these issues but Madison will not return my calls or emails. Below is a list of activity from the time I received disposition of my deposit. - June 21, received disposition of my deposit. - June 21, after review, I called Madison for clarification because the charges they sent did not add up, and I had an issue with some of the charges. The staff member that answered the phone instructed me to send an email to info@madisonspokane.com. I was informed I would receive a response in two-to-three weeks - June 21, I emailed Madison to (1) obtain a specific list of charges and (2) get an explanation regarding the early vacate charge. - July 18, I sent a follow-up email requesting to know when I could expect a response - July 23, I sent another email requesting that Madison respond to me no later than July 29, 2016. - July 23, I received an auto-response to that email stating the office is closed on July 22, but Candace Leach will be returning voice messages and emails on Monday and Tuesday. - July 27, I called and left a message on Madison's voicemail. - July 27, I called again and spoke with a staff member that transferred me to Candace's voicemail, to which I left a message. - July 29, I tried to call Madison but was unable to get an answer. Rather than leave another voicemail, I called the prospective tenant line. The staff member was unwilling to put me in contact with Madison senior staff, but did give me the extension to Pam, a property manager. - July 29, I left a message with Pam. - July 29, I called one more time. The receptionist answered, was unable to get me to a staff member, but provided me Candace's email address and recommended I email her. I have not had a response to any of the emails or voicemails I have left with Madison.

Desired Settlement: I would like Madison to contact me and work with me in a timely manner to resolve this issue and one other issue I need to address with Madison.

Business Response:

  1. My apologies for the delay in responding to the original tenant inquiry with our company.  That was a concerning lack of customer service on our part.
  2. Charges were legitimate, claims of the being "inflated and unreasonable" are laughable.  Home was left in awful condition.  There was damage, neglect and the unit was left in an extremely unclean condition.  Please see attached Move Out Condition Report. 
  3. The disposition letter sent on 6/14/16 was VERY detailed.  It included a summary sheet, tenant ledger, work orders and invoices.  If this isn't detailed, I don't know what is!  Please see attached Disposition 20160614. (Yes, there is a typo on the "Charges" total, but the actual "Amount Owed" at the end was correct.)
  4. The tenant actually received a pro-rated rent credit and was refunded part of the rent paid for the last month of tenancy.  We were able to secure a new tenant in an extremely fast manner considering the condition of the home at move-out and the work we had to put into it.  Please see attached Follow Up Letter 20160801.
  5. We were in contact the day the complaint was filed. Please see attached E-mail Correspondence.

Consumer Response:


Complaint: ********

I am rejecting this response because:

Two reasons.

First, the reason I submitted the complaint initially was their lack of contact with me regarding the issue.  The information on Madison's inflated charges was provided for context and to convey their legal requirement to respond.  I do appreciate their apology on the matter.

Of note, on August 5, 2016 I did send them a request for clarification on a charge, and conveyed issue with two other charges, and have yet to receive a response.

Secondly, I do find their charges were over inflated.  I anticipated some cleaning and yard fees, but not the extant at which they charged.  The home was not filthy and damaged, and I do not find the report actually supports that.  Additionally, they included charges for "miscellaneous repairs," of which I have requested clarification.  Their charges also included disposal of debris on the property that was present before I moved in, and their photographs included an item of interest to them that was also present before I moved in.  Whether I was charged for it I do not know.

I will likely pay the business for additional money they request, largely because I do not want this to drag out any longer and I do not trust the business.

Sincerely,

***** ***** 

8/3/2016 Billing/Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: Charges related to management of rental property. Expenses paid that were unauthorized and charged back.

Desired Settlement: Refund of $751.99

Business Response:

He has been in communication with me directly for the last several week.  Recently decided to escalate to small claims court.  See attached. 

***SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS REDACTED BY BBB***

Consumer Response:  
Complaint: ********

I am rejecting this response because:  I did not see the attachment from Madison.  I offered to settle this splitting the cost of the duct cleaning and Madison countered with an unacceptable offer to just make the whole thing go away.  At that point I decided to let the judge decide who is right.  

Sincerely,

****** *****

11/18/2015 Problems with Product/Service | Complaint Details Unavailable
11/18/2015 Billing/Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: I received a bill from the City of Spokane for $477.69 for a rental they had been managing for me. After attempting to call ****** more than once and not getting my calls returned I went to the business on August 31, 2015. I was told by ****** that the money for that bill had been sent to me by mistake after the tenants moved out. I was never contacted about this and asked to return the money so the bill could be paid. ****** told me there was a balance of $24.77 on their records so I would need to bring a cashiers check for $454.39 so they could send in the bill. I went to Chase bank at that time and obtained a cashiers check for that amount. I gave it to ****** with the assurance that the payment would be sent out by the next day. About 1.5 weeks later I received a bill from the City of Spokane showing that they had received a check from Madison in the amount of $189.24. I attempted to call Madison on 9/17, left a message for ****** who never returned my call. I went to Madison the next day. ****** was not in but I spoke with *******. ****, the receptionist, was also present along with 2 other ladies who I assume work in the office. In checking the computer I was informed that there was still an outstanding bill for some mowing that had been done and for their 10% commission.. Our renters moved out in the spring and we our selling the house so those bills should have been paid at that time. When I was there on the 31st paying my bill I was assured that this would take care of everything. She returned my house keys. I find it difficult to believe that after 4 months she was not aware of any other outstanding bills. The receptionist, ****, was present at that time and heard ****** tell me that this took care of everything, although I do understand that since she works with her she may not be willing to admit this. I feel this is a poorly run business. They don't return calls(I have called several times over the summer, none returned) and I believe that some of their practices are deceptive. I had informed them in January and again in March that we would not be renting the house again and would not need their services after the current renters were moved out.

Business Response:

To Whom It May Concern:

***** informed us she was listing the house for sale and would let the tenants out of their lease a month early to be able to keep their Spokane Housing voucher and our responsibility would be to close them out at move out.  They vacated on 4/30/15.  We proceeded to process all the charges associated with their move out.  They ended up having a balance owing of $251.48 after the security deposit was applied.  Included in the owing amount was an outstanding balance to the City of Spokane for $189.24.  The previous tenant came in on 6/1 and paid $192.62 and again on 7/1/15 and paid $58.86 which in turn settled their account. See Exhibit 1.

While the security deposit was sent to the owner on 5/15, we were receiving monies from a previous tenant that was in Collections (two tenants previous) that was paying the outstanding bills through the summer;  see Exhibit 2.

When ***** came into the office on 8/31/15, she asked for her amount to settle the account with us and talked about an outstanding balance with the City of Spokane.  Not realizing that she had not been paying the City of Spokane over the summer, (her responsibility as the house was for sale and we didn't receive duplicate copies), I gave her the amount to pay off what was owed in our system including the previous tenant bill at the City for $189.24.  She paid the $454.39 and her account was settled and all the bills were paid on 9/1/15 as agreed. See Exhibit 3.

Regards,

**** ** *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

8/23/2015 Billing/Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: We just received our security disposition and have one major concern. We were charged $270 for carpet cleaning but we already had the carpets professionally cleaned (as outlined in the lease) prior to moving out AND provided a receipt for this cleaning when I turned in the keys and remotes to the property. We should not be held responsible for covering the cost of duplicative carpet cleaning resulting from Madison's failure to properly record it already being completed. Madison has not responded to multiple emails and calls trying to resolve the situation. Their non-response to an issue that is obviously their responsibility is completely unacceptable.

Desired Settlement: We are requesting that the amount charged to us for carpet cleaning ($270) be refunded immediately as this was an obvious oversight on the part of Madison Property Management.

Business Response: A check for $297.00 was sent to the *******'s on July 28, 2015.

Regards,

**** ** *******, RMP®
President
Designated Broker

Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

8/18/2015 Problems with Product/Service | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: I took time off work to come look at one of their properties at 2 o'clock Thursday the 6th 2015. I physically went into their office to make this appointment 1 week prior to this date. I showed up to the property at 1:45 pm. I contacted the office at 2:04 pm to tell them no one showed up. She informed me that she missed an email several days prior and was supposed to reschedule my appointment but must have missed it. I have to take time off work to view any of their properties because they only show them Monday - Friday from 9 am to 4:30 pm. I have been wronged and lost money to be there. And they refuse to do anything to make up for my time lost. Manager stated "Maybe we aren't who you should rent from since we've already started off on the wrong foot." I suggested they at least wave an application fee to make up for my money lost and she only offered an apology.

Business Response: To Whom It May Concern:

First, let me again offer apologies to Ms. **** for the mistake on our part.  We strive for excellence, but sometimes mistakes are made.  There is no excuse and I sincerely apologize for the inconvenience Ms. **** experienced due to our error.

In this instance, when Ms. **** called in and the mistake was realized, our receptionist apologized profusely.  She explained to Ms. **** that the unit wasn’t ready to show and would call her when it was ready (as well as offered alternative properties in our inventory). After listening to Ms. ****** response and the receptionist determining she was not going to be able to offer an acceptable solution, it was apparent that it was time to escalate this matter to the next level.

At this point one of our property managers got on the phone with Ms. ****.  Once again a sincere apology was made and it was again
explained that the unit was not ready to show.  At this point Ms. **** continuing to complain and berate the property manager as well as make unreasonable demands.  Two things became readily apparent during the course of the conversation: 1) No amount of apologizing or accommodation was going to satisfy Ms. ****; 2) The harshness and vitriol of Ms. ****'s verbal tirade with two of my team members clearly identified her as the type of person with whom we choose not to do business.

Prospective tenants sometimes forget that while they are evaluating us, we are also evaluating them; from the very first phone call through the end of the screening process.  If they are rude, inappropriate or lash out verbally, my team is instructed to let them know we may not be the right management company for them and encourage them to look elsewhere.  As a business we have no obligation to provide service to those who act inappropriately (in person or over the phone), make unreasonable demands and/or mistreat our team members.

In this instance, Ms. **** had a very legitimate reason to be upset.  We understood this and were trying to offer viable solutions at her convenience. However, she would have none of it and continued her verbal tirade, eventually hanging up on the property manager. 

The receptionist and property manager both handled the phone call in a calm, appropriate, professional and acceptable manner according to all witnesses in the office.  After receiving two sincere apologies for an honest mistake (that we admitted and owned-up to), her reluctance to accept any solutions and her verbal abuse, Ms. ****’s request that we waive the application fee (should she apply) was declined.   

Had Ms. **** responded in an appropriate and decent manner, we would have gladly waived the application fee to accommodate her inconvenience.  We routinely make appropriate concessions when we make an error.  However, after our interaction with Ms. **** it was determined she would not be a good fit for our company. Therefore, it made no sense to waive an application fee as an encouragement for her to submit an application.  

I once again apologize to Ms. **** for the inconvenience she experienced in dealing with our organization and wish her the best moving forward with other landlords and/or management companies.

Regards,

Eric B******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.


Consumer Response:
BBB,

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.


Whoever the person is that responded to my complaint wasn't involved and doesn't understand what had actually happened. The receptionist did not offer to compensate for my time at all. She did apologize and took full responsibility. She also offered to reschedule so I could see the property when it was ready. And I explained to her that I had to request time off to make the original appointment because of their unreasonable showing hours. At which point she transferred me to someone who had more authority in the situation. This woman was completely unwilling to compensate me for my time. I specifically asked, "If the very least they could do is wave a few of our application fees?" At which point she told me she could not. The response to my complaint was a flat out lie. And as far you them judging me for how inconvenienced and upset I was, really shows how terrible of a business they are. They were right about one thing, I absolutely would not be a good fit to rent from their company, after they flat out blew off my appointment, and turned around and lied about the actions they took towards resolving my issue. I have nothing more to gain by fighting this argument but I will continue to let people know the truth about Madison Real Estate and Property Management. They are an awful company and have no hesitation to completely screw people over whenever they can.



Regards,

**** ****

8/18/2015 Problems with Product/Service | Read Complaint Details
X

Additional Notes

Complaint:

My roommate and I found a house on the Madison website and notified them that we were extremely interested in renting from them. After touring the house we decided that it would be a great fit for us. My roommate was dealing with a woman named Erin, who informed us the current tenants were going to be given another month to move out. About a week later my roommate was contacted stating that current tenants would be out by the 15th of June and we would be able to move in by the 1st of July. **** specifically told my roommate at that time we should put in our applications immediately, but we should wait on the deposits until the applications came back. In response, we turned in our applications the very next day. Two weeks later, we still had not heard anything and my roommate contacted Madison for follow-up and was informed that another applicant had put in her application fee and as well as deposit (which we were specifically instructed not to do), so they were going to give her the house. I then contacted ******* at Madison and expressed my extreme frustration as to how this situation was handled, especially because at this time, we had both given our notice to our respective landlords and now we were stuck with no place to live after the first. He apologized for the inconvenience and offered for us to look at another property, but there was nothing else that fit our budget, size, and area of choice. It was at that time that I asked for a refund for our application fees, $80 in total. He told me that he would look into it and give me a call back. At the end of the week I yet again had not heard back and had to be the one for follow-up again. ******* stated that he spoke to his accounting department and they would make the decision as to whether we received the application fees back. He then stated that they were non-refundable, which is when I informed him that his company would not have received my application fee had we not found this house. Our conversation ended with him telling me that he would see what he could do and that he would contact me, that was about a month ago, and yet again, I am left without a response and follow-up.

Desired Settlement: I would like my 80 dollars to be refunded from the application fee. I thought about asking for the extra 138 I had to pay my past apartment complex for allowing me to stay longer despite the fact my contract was terminated until I was able to find a new place to live, but at this point, it's not even worth that fight. I would just rather never recommend anyone to do business with Madison Real Estate and Property Management and receive the refund that is rightfully mine.

Business Response:
To Whom It May Concern:

It is always our intention and process to be as clear as possible when explaining how prospective tenants may reserve a property.  Specific details are below, but in short, we do caution them on the risks of placing a holding fee as well as the risks of not placing a holding fee. Clarity on this point is critical and all team members are trained on the policies and procedures.  Additionally, this process is brought up and discussed routinely in our daily and weekly team meetings.


Ms. ******* agreed to following written conditions by signing her application on 6/12/15:

• Properties are able to be reserved on a first-come, first-serve basis with the submission of a Holding Fee in the amount of one month's rent plus $75 in and must be submitted with an Application and Application Fee. Should the application be denied, the Holding Fee will be refunded to the Applicant. If approved, the Holding Fee becomes non-refundable and will be applied to any monies owed (rent, deposit, admin fees, etc.) upon move-in.

• Holding / Reserving Property -  Properties are held and reserved for prospective tenants based of the date and time of the submission of a Holding Fee.  The Holding Fee must be accompanied by a completed and paid application for all parties applying to rent to property. The Holding Fee will be refunded if the tenants do not pass screening criteria and are the application is rejected. Once a tenant has passed the screening criteria and been accepted to rent the property applied for, the holding fee becomes NON-REFUNDABLE and will be applied to monies owed at time of move-in.

• In order to evaluate the various applications it is necessary for Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc. to expend time and cost in credit reports, criminal reports, and other administrative cost. Hence, our policy that the application fee is NON-refundable. If your application is approvable, but not the approved one for the property for which you are applying, you may consider applying for other available properties that we may have, without payment of an additional application fee. 



By agreeing to the terms above, Ms. ******* acknowledged that she read the specific actions she would need to take to reserve a property.  Regardless of her recollection of any conversation, she acknowledged that she understood the process to reserve a property.

Additionally, as stated above, our staff is trained to specifically outline the conditions on which a property may be reserved.  This is especially true for Erin who is at our front desk and answers the phone.

Ms. ******* got her answer, did not like it and proceeded to keep calling back with the expectation we would change our mind through multiple phone calls.  Unfortunately, to continue the conversation in some cases ceases to be productive.

Please see attached phone log which shows we communicated with her on five occasions during this process and she called into our office a total fifteen times.

We regret that Ms. ******* did not view her experience with our organization as satisfactory and wish her the best in the future.

Eric B******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc. 





  


Consumer Response:
BBB,
We offered to pay the hold fee but, once again we were told specifically by your associate named Erin that we should wait until the applications cleared and also that the previous tenants had vacated as planned. Your associate Charles also apologized about the miscommunication of the situation and admitted that it was your companies error. All I would like is our application fee back, I have no desire to do business with your company and the only reason that I even contacted the BBB is because once again your associate Charles said that he would contact me and he failed to do so. That is the only reason that I called repeatedly because I continued to get the run around from your associates. If you would like to stand by your bait and switch and horrible business practices of course that is your business. I just want our money back because we followed what we were instructed to by your associates.
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.


Regards,

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

7/2/2015 Billing/Collection Issues | Complaint Details Unavailable
6/29/2015 Advertising/Sales Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: Madison real estate verified that an address in which we wanted to rent was pet friendly on multiple occasions, so my room mate and I each sent in an application with a $40 non-refundable application fee ($80 in total). After wasting over a week of our time we could have been using to look for other places to live, Madison real estate denied us because of our pets after telling us over the phone and during a viewing of the property that pets weren't an issue and it was a pet friendly rental. They also claimed as rental criteria 2 times the rent in income but denied us because of concerns about "too low" of income. Rent was $795/month. We make in total $2500/month, all we needed according to the criteria is $1600/month of income to be eligible to rent the property. Another example of their false advertisements.

Desired Settlement: I want to get a full refund of all the money we tied up in their bate and switch realty scheme. They are refunding me $870 dollars for holding fees, and we want the $80 dollars in non-refundable fees because they never would have gotten that $80 if they hadn't of lied about their pet policy.

Business Response: We apologize for the trouble these applicants encountered.  There was no lying, bait and switch or anything else nefarious that occurred.  It was a simple mistake of not having complete information in the listing and not some plan to cause inconvenience for anyone.  Please understand that when mistakes occur it causes more work for us, so we have no incentive to create any problems or cause anyone any trouble.

Once we discovered the mistake, we tried to find an alternative property in our inventory that would work for the applicants but were not successful.
The holding fee and application fees have already been refunded as of this response.  In all cases where mistakes like this occur through no fault of the applicant, all deposits and refunds are returned as soon as possible.  When we make mistakes, we step up, correct them and make things right. 
Regards,
**** ** *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

Consumer Response: BBB,

I have reviewed the response made by the business in reference to complaint ID ******** and find that this resolution is satisfactory to me. It wont be until some time next week that my 80 dollar application fee will show up on my bank account. If I don't see it by Friday next week, what should I do? 

Regards,


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

4/1/2015 Problems with Product/Service | Complaint Details Unavailable
10/8/2014 Billing/Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: We rented from Madison Real Estate and Property Management (MRE) for a 1 year period from 6/22/2012 through 6/30/2012. When our lease was coming to an end, we had the choice to renew our lease, rent somewhere else, or consider buying a home. We chose to get away from MRE as soon as possible. We received a statement and (partial) deposit refund on 7/15 after moving out on 6/30. The summary page said to call if we had questions and when we called we were laughed at for having tried to call instead of communicating in writing. At that point we knew that our problems with dealing with MRE were not even close to being over. We sent an email to them later that evening (7/15) to see who we should contact about our questions, and how we should contact that person. We sent another email to them about it on 7/21 due to no response. They replied on 7/22 asking for “specific questions” to the deposit without saying who to contact. I replied with those specific questions on 7/22. With no response from MRE after one more week, I sent another email on 7/29 reminding them. Then I sent another email on 8/3 to remind them, again due to no response. And I sent another email on 8/5 reminding them once more (yep, due to no response). After no response at the end of business on 8/6 I changed my game plan. Phone calls obviously weren't working. Emails obviously weren't working. So I sent a certified letter giving them one week to give a reply with answers to our questions or I would sue, which arrived to them on 8/7. Finally, on 8/19, rather than suing, I sent another email begging them to reply. Still no reply, so I went in person to their facility towards the end of business on 8/21. At this point we probably should have just sued them. Instead, I called them after I left work on 8/21 to see if they were still open and to see if the person I was emailing was still there. The receptionist said the person was still there, and still would be when I got there 10 minutes later, still within normal business hours. After arriving, the receptionist told me that the person was, in fact, not there and had gone home for the day! I told her that I wasn't leaving until I had the chance to speak with that person. Suddenly she came out of the back room! I explained to the person about me sending 7 emails and 1 certified letter since we had moved out, without any answer from MRE to my questions on the bill. I reviewed the charges and how I felt they were inaccurate. She verbally admitted that the new account water bill fee ($10) was indeed charged in error, and that they would be sending a response to me by email the next day. And this time they did actually reply! And to my surprise, two business days later we even received actual paper copies of their email! And it was written that they would give us the credit for the $10! In their response, their excuse for withholding the $10 was, “this may be a new charge that [the water company is] doing that we were not aware of.” This is just plainly not true to any extent. I contacted the water company and was told that this charge has been in place “prior to 2000.” The water company also said that MRE has even paid that fee “a number of times” in the history of MRE having accounts with the water company. On top of this, MRE requested copies of our rental water bill statements on the day we signed the lease, and MRE was aware through those statements that we were charged, and paid for, the $10 fee on our first bill. And to add more, MRE was the property management company for 30 different active accounts with the same water company on the day we signed our lease. MRE knew that this was not a new fee. They knew that it was included with every initial statement when the account changes responsible parties. To top it all off, the fee is even mentioned on the water company’s website very plainly and clearly. Two weeks later after their reply we still had not receive the $10 credit they promised to credit. Perhaps they meant that we would have a $10 credit towards our next rental, knowing full well that we would never rent from them again? Even the form of the credit was not clarified. Rather than send any more emails, which history showed would be unanswered, I sent a second certified letter on 9/10/2013 (MRE received it on 9/12) giving them until 10/1/2013 to return the money owed us, or face litigation. RCW 59.18.280 states, “If the landlord fails to give such statement together with any refund due the tenant within [14 days] he or she shall be liable to the tenant for the full amount of the deposit.” As such, and to be in compliance with state law, we are requesting the remainder of our deposit be returned for the time and trouble we have gone through in trying to get our money back. This month (6/30/2014) will be 1 full year since we moved out and we still have not received any other communication from them about when or how they will be giving any credit, even though they said this credit would be given. They failed to comply with the state law. While they did give a statement, it was not a full statement. It was not a specific statement. And they failed to provide a portion of the deposit that was due to us, the tenants, within the specified time-frame. When I brought this to their attention the day we received the initial partial refund, all they really had to do was reply within a reasonable time and return the $10. I likely would not be pursuing the remainder of our deposit if they had done this, although it was still a failure to comply with the state law. Instead, they ignored our multiple attempts to communicate and resolve the issue, most likely hoping that we would forget about it. But because of the intentional refusal to return the money owed to us, we are asking for the remainder of the full deposit according to the state law. If we must take this to court, we will ask the court to consider awarding "...two times the amount of the deposit for the intentional refusal of the landlord to give the refund due."

Desired Settlement: Our desired outcome is for them to comply with RCW 59.18.280 and return the remainder of our full deposit, totaling $440.04, due to their failure to “provide a full and specific statement” as well as failing to give “any refund due the tenant.”

Business Response: First, let me apologize that Mr. and Mrs. ******* were communicated with in a timely manner.  We strive to respond to all requests in a reasonable amount of time but occasionally we fall short or things get missed.  This appears to be one of those instances. 

Let me run through the time frames of events as evidenced in the attached document:

6/30/13: Lease end date
7/1/13: Tenant delivers keys to office
7/4/13: Move-out condition report completed
7/12/13: Final disposition sent to tenants (including all invoices and ledger outlining all charges in detail)
7/22/13: Tenant submits questions about deposit in writing (via e-mail)
8/22/14: Response outlining all charges (and the mistaken $10 charge) mailed to tenants

After reviewing this case and the tenant ledger it has been found that we did not issue a refund for the $10.00 mistakenly charged to the tenant.  A check for the $10 plus an additional $20 ($30 total) for inconvenience, mailing costs and inadvertently holding the funds will be mailed out to the tenant by July 11, 2014 via certified mail.

I do apologize for the inconvenience and that the mistaken charge did not get returned to the tenant in a timely manner as it as it should have.  However, this was not an intentional refusal to return funds; it was a simple oversight due to a flaw in our process.  In our opinion this mistake does not constitute a violation of RCW 59.18.  Additionally, a full and complete accounting was provided to the tenant as of July 12, 2013, despite the claims of the tenant (see attached).  The amount of $440.04 owed by the tenant will not be refunded.

We have adjusted our process so that moving forward the bookkeeper is copied on any deposit dispute responses so that entry of any refunds is double-checked by both the maintenance and accounting departments.  This should prevent this sort of thing from happening in the future.

Lastly, I once again apologize to Mr. ******* that our communication was lacking and we will strive to do better in the future. 

Regards,



**** *. *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

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]

BBB,

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.

You “occasionally” forget to respond to complaints to your tenants?  My complaint of you not responding is not something new about Madison Real Estate (MRE), simply read the BBB reviews and the reasons for your BBB rating.  Also, when I was being ignored for the 1st 6 weeks after we moved out, I called the property owner, for whom you managed the property we rented.  Yes, I’m sure you already heard from him about me having to contact him directly to help me.  I had to leave a message the first time in the evening, but he quickly called back THE NEXT MORNING.  He told me of his own frustration in trying to do business with BBB.  He surprisingly (well, not so surprisingly) couldn’t get anyone to return his phone calls or emails.  He had tried several times, in multiple methods, and he failed to get a response as well.  So, that “instance” of MRE not responding to requests in a timely manner wasn’t just with me as a tenant in that initial period, but also the property owner. Also, the new tenants in the same home have had several issues in getting simple repairs done, and they threatened to sue you for your lack in response.  The neighbor just down the road from my new house had the same issue, with you not responding to his requests for simple repairs when he first moved in.  These are just a few of the MRE tenants that I know.

Now, in your time frame of events you forgot to include ALL OF THE OTHER attempts I made to contact you, including via certified mail.  I would have sent the specific questions sooner, but I had no information on who the correct contact person was supposed to be.  The original summary page said to call you, and when we called we were laughed at and told to do everything in writing but didn’t give us a person to contact.  I asked the Maintenance Manager, and she never told me who the correct person to contact was, but she asked for the specific questions.  I emailed those questions the same day she (finally) responded to me. It took me 2 emails (7/15 and 7/21) just to get the correct contact person before sending the questions.  I am attaching all documentation I have about our attempts to contact you. 

In your reply to my BBB complaint you said that on 7/12/13 the “Final disposition [was] sent to tenants (including all invoices and ledger outlining all charges in detail).”  I frankly disagree, and the invoices (see attached) confirm this.  Nowhere in it did you outline the charge for YOUR new account fee, and you charged us for YOUR new account set up fee, which was not outlined in the ledger.  Therefore, the disposition DID NOT outline all charges in detail; hence, the failure of the landlord to “give a full and specific statement of the basis of retaining any of the deposit” (see RCW 59.18.280).  You attempted to provide the full statement, but you did not actually send a full and complete statement (mistakenly or intentionally).

You were correct in part of your reply: “… [MRE] did not issue a refund for the $10.00 mistakenly charged to the tenant.”  That says it all right there.  YOU failed to give “any refund due the tenant within 14 days.”  It has been a full year now.   The law states it clearly that if this happens, the landlord “shall be liable to the tenant for the full amount of the deposit.”  It doesn’t say anything about exceptions for “mistakes” or otherwise.  It really is that simple, and I can’t see why you feel that you failing to give any refund due does not constitute a violation of this RCW 59.18.  There aren’t very many sentences in the RCW.  It isn’t hard to get lost in there.  Now, if you had offered the $10 plus an additional $20 for inconvenience the first time around (after my first 2-3 attempts to contact you, or even when you replied nearly 8 weeks after we moved out), I might have actually let this slide. 

After you finally replied and admitted that you failed to provide the full deposit due to us, you yet again failed to deliver by not actually sending the refund.  I guess that was another one of those “instances” where you fall short?  I even sent you a reminder via email and certified mail 2 weeks later to forward us the money due.  You simply ignored (again) that certified letter also.

I then sat on this for several months, researching MRE’s past, and nearly filed small claims to pursue the owed full amount of the deposit.  I wanted to give MRE one last chance, however, by going through the BBB.  Listed below is a time frame of events for this process:

6/7/2014: Complaint filed with BBB

6/8/2014: Complaint sent to MRE with request to respond within 10 calendar days (a time frame that BBB felt was appropriate to wait for a response)

6/17/2014: BBB sent second request for business to respond

6/23/2014: BBB sent third request for business to respond

6/27/2014: BBB advised MRE that their accreditation could be revoked if they don’t respond

7/1/2014: MRE requested a 5-day extension to reply

7/7/2014 (morning): MRE’s time frame was exceeded for a response, MRE notified

7/7/2014 (afternoon): MRE gave 1st written response to BBB complaint, claiming they will send a $30 refund to us

Wow, I must have terrible luck with MRE.  It took you one full month, 5 notices AND threats of your BBB accreditation being revoked to get a reply from you.  I seem to be involved with all of your “instances” in which you fall short. 

I also find it very interesting that it wasn’t until BBB got involved that MRE admitted that this “mistake” was their mistake.  In your first reply to me you avoided any responsibility of it, and stated that “this may be a new charge that we were not aware of.”  That letter was signed by the “Designated Broker and/or Managing Broker.”  Then I brought forward the truth about the situation, and only then did you admit that you made a mistake.  Trying to skirt the issue is just terrible business habits.  You knew it was not a new charge.  You were completely aware of the charge.  You outright lied to us to cover up your mistake.  Nowhere in that first reply did you even hint at apologizing for not refunding the money.  And then you had another one of those “instances” and never sent the refund you admitted to owing us.  You never even apologized for lying to us, but tried to downplay this whole thing as an instance of a mistake in which MRE fell short.  

You said you have adjusted your process so “that entry of any refunds is double-checked by both the maintenance and accounting departments.  This should prevent this sort of thing from happening in the future.”  The very first person that I emailed to discuss deposit concerns was ****** ******.  She signed her email with her first name, and then listed her job functions directly below that.  It is very interesting that she lists herself as being “Maintenance Manager” as well as “Accounting”.  Your process “adjustment” that you mentioned isn’t really an adjustment at all.  You make it sound like a change will take place where two separate departments are overlooking the issues, but evidence shows that no actual change can occur if the same person wears both hats.  It sounds good on paper, but when all the details are brought forward it is very clear that it’s just words.  I’m calling your bluff again.

Now, the RCW doesn’t require the intentional refusal to refund the deposit.  For the full deposit to be returned per the RCW if you fail to give “any refund due the tenant” within 14 days, no intention is mandated to be proved at all.  For you to not have to repay the full deposit, you must prove that circumstances "beyond your control prevented you from returning the deposit."  It is quite simply if you fail to return the full deposit due the tenant.  No other qualifications.  The intention qualification is requisite to be proved only for double the deposit to be returned, in the courts discretion.  If intentional refusal is proved, then you could be liable for up to two times the amount of the deposit.  We can go there if you want; all evidence put together shows beyond a reasonable doubt that this was more than a simple oversight.

However, I know mistakes happen.  Let the facts stand where they are for your intentions.  When there are that many mistakes and lies with one transaction it’s hard to believe that this was merely a mistake.  Intention is difficult to prove, so I will leave that one up to the judge.  I am simply requesting that you comply with the state law as it is clearly and simply written.  If we actually receive the $30 check you mentioned, I will count that towards the total of our remaining deposit to be returned. Let's just hope that I am not a participant in your next "instance" of MRE falling short.

I am still requesting that you return the total of our full deposit as it became due on 7/15/2013 because of your failure to comply with state law and your neglect in returning our deposit, and for making us suffer through your lies and prove you wrong.


Regards,

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

Business Response: To Whom It May Concern:

My sincere apologies.  Our bookkeeper apparently misinterpreted the response, an honest mistake.  An additional check for $10 will be issued in our next check run.

Regards,

**** *. *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

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]

BBB,

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.

[To assist us in bringing this matter to a close, we would like to know your view on the matter.]

Please add the following to my BBB complaint about Madison Real Estate.  Thank you!
 
I am curious why Madison chose to wait past their BBB-recommended time frame once again in order to tell me that they again made an "honest mistake" in not sending the amount they said they would send.  Did Madison not "change your process to prevent this sort of thing from happening in the future?"  How many times can this business screw up and get caught trying to wrongfully withhold money without thinking they will have to pay a penalty for it?
 
I am also curious why they chose to not comment on my rejection notice.  The points I would like them to respond about are listed below:
1. Why did you take so long in responding to my initial inquiries after our move-out?  I sent several emails, 2 certified letters, 2 phone calls and 1 personal visit to your office.  For a business to say they strive to respond to all requests in a reasonable time then it shouldn't take nearly 6 weeks to get answers to simple questions.  
2. Why do you not make it more clear to your tenants how they should contact you about inquiries regarding their statement?  We can make a calculated estimate that it is so a few of them will just drop off and forget about the inquiry and you get to keep your unlawfully-withheld monies.
3. Where in your final disposition to us do you mention the wrongfully-withheld charge?  If you provided a full and specific statement, as required by RCW 59.18.280, then this should be in it.  How was it "out of your control," as the law demands for you to prove for you to not be liable for the full deposit due? Otherwise, you are in default of state law on two separate facets (not giving the statement and not returning the money due).
4. If the first "mistake" was not intentional, and you realized the mistake after my several attempts to contact you, why did you yet again fail to send the money the second time, even after you said you would be sending the refund?
5. After ignoring my BBB complaint to the point of almost having your BBB status revoked, you said you would be sending a $30 refund check via certified mail.  If you really didn't intend on keeping our measly $10, why did you only send $20 when it came time for it? Another "honest mistake" I guess.
6. How is your process going to be adjusted (as you hinted in your first response to BBB) so that two different departments review refunds to avoid "mistakes" when the same person is over both departments?  What, exactly, are you changing in your process to avoid this in the future?
7. If you try to communicate in a reasonable amount of time, why does it take so long to get any reply from you about your BBB complaints?  You have consistently waited until after the BBB-recommended time frame to respond.  When you don't even communicate to the BBB in a timely manner, how should the tenants and landlords expect to be treated?
8. What would help anyone reading the BBB complaints want to do business with Madison when you have been proven that you don't communicate, that you steal money, that you ignore requests about the theft, that you lie about the reason for the theft, and still lie about changes in your process?
 
In a different complaint from BBB about Madison, from 6/27/2014, you replied that "younger college students...need to be held accountable" because they "feel as though they should be able to live without rules and standards."  Madison, I hate to say it, but it's not just the young college students that need to be held accountable and cannot live without rules and standards.  Professional businesses should do the same, if not more so.  You are trying to avoid your own accountability because you know that you are going to pay for it.
 
You owe us the full amount of our deposit back, end of story.  Not just the $30 ($20 you actually sent back).  If you don't comply with the state law and return the full deposit due to us then you should saddle up for a rough lawsuit ahead.  It's a shame that all of this is over an attempted $10 theft.  If you had dealt honestly with us from the start of our lease and/or fixed your "mistake" the first time around, we wouldn't be going through all of this.
 
This is my final message to BBB about your dishonesty and lies.  **** also has plenty more similar reviews for readers to see.


Regards,

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

Business Response: To Whom It May Concern:

Attached is the copy of a check to the *******s for an additional $20 (and the envelope it was sent in) sent from our office.  We have now sent them $40 (Chk #***** for $20 on 7/8/14.. and Chk #25061 on 9/25/14) to compensate for any trouble the *******s had in receiving their $10 refund for utility transfer charges.  

The above however does not negate the fact they did not leave the property in an acceptable condition and were charged accordingly (photos attached).  We will not be refunding the cost for cleaning and/or repairs.

Regards,

**** ** *******
President
Madison Real Estate and property Management, Inc.

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]

BBB,

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.

[To assist us in bringing this matter to a close, we would like to know your view on the matter.]

Regards,

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

 
Madison Real Estate, did I miss the post where you addressed my questions regarding your habits of lying and deceiving and trying to ignore people that bring this information to your attention?  I have asked several questions in prior posts, and not once did you respond.  In fact, you almost LOST YOUR BBB ACCREDITATION a second time because you failed to respond to them in a timely manner.

At least TRY to answer the questions.  You can't just ignore that fact that the questions were asked simply because you don't know how to WEASEL YOUR WAY OUT of those lies.

Please see posts from 7/9/2014 and 7/28/2014 for the questions that you have completely failed to answer.  AND ANSWER THE QUESTIONS--TRUTHFULLY THIS TIME.

I accept the repayment of $40 as a partial repayment, and we will deduct this from the total refund that is legally due to us.  Because Madison failed to return the full deposit due as required by RCW then they are fully liable for the full amount of our deposit. The landlord-tenant laws are there to keep the landlords from illegally withholding our deposit and to institute a consequence when they do this.  The consequence for such a choice, clearly stated in the RCW, is that they now have to refund the full deposit.  Their only way out of that consequence is to show that this was due to “circumstances beyond the landlord's control” that prevented them from returning the full refund.  It was very plainly within the landlord’s control, they just chose to not refund the money the first time, or even the first 10 times that I requested that they do so.  I have been trying to get this straightened out through the BBB, but Madison doesn't even respond to them in a timely manner (see below).  I feel like I am trying to reason with my 10 year old child when trying to deal with Madison, attempting to teach consequences for lying and dishonesty.

Thank you for bringing up the issue about the grass in the flowerbeds and weeds in the lawn by attaching a picture of it.  This is a whole different issue that again shows your dishonesty! *** ********* bullied us at the beginning about the grass in the flower beds and weeds in the lawn by saying that it was not something that he would put on the move-in checklist, despite us asking for it (among several other damages/issues that he refused to put on the checklist).  We naively signed the checklist still.  Upon move-out, however, THEY CHARGED US to have the grass removed from the flower beds.  THEIR OWN PICTURES of our move-in clearly SHOW GRASS in the flowerbeds and weeds in the lawn.  Yet THEY STILL CHARGED US to have this removed at the end of our tenancy.

Here’s the kicker—when the new tenants moved in, guess what was on their move-in checklist?!  Yes, grass in the flower beds and weeds in the lawn--the same grass and weeds that were there upon us moving out that we "paid" to have removed.  They charged us for fixing something that was already there upon move-in, and then they didn't actually have the services performed.  I also spoke with those tenants after they suffered under Madison’s thumb, and guess what?!  Madison charged them to have the grass and weeds removed, which, of course WAS NEVER DONE!!

Madison, answer the questions posted on 7/9/2014 and 7/28/2014 as well as the issue with the grass as stated above.  I dare you to try to give an honest explanation for your several lies and deceits.

In the meantime, we will still await for you to comply with the state law and return our full refund because of your dishonest business practices and lies.  Currently, the remaining total is $400.04.

10/8/2014 Problems with Product/Service | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: A few years ago, I contracted with *** ********* of Madison Real Estate and Property Management to manage the renting of my town home at **** ** ********* ***** ******* ******* ** *****. He has not performed due diligence as promised in that contract. For example, the contract states that the renter would "clean up the exterior of the property . . .". More than once, the homeowners association sent me an official request to clean up the landscaping around the town home to bring it into compliance with the rest of the neighborhood. Mr. ********* assured me that he would have the work completed and would bill the tenants to clean up the yard. He never fulfilled that promise. July 31, 2014, Mr. ********* and I terminated our management contract. My town home was vacated with a large front picture window broken, the interior of the home dirty and greasy, and the exterior an overgrown mess of weeds and dead plant debris. My phone calls are not returned, nor are my emails, nor my keys, nor my garage door openers, Mr. ********* and his staff are in "avoidance mode". I do not know what Mr. ********* is doing with the damage deposit paid by the tenant who vacated my property on July 21, 2014. Madison does not honor its contracts, does not have the civility to communicate with its clients, and makes promises that are never kept. I think the citizens of Spokane trust that the businesses permitted to operate here are ethical.

Desired Settlement: My first desired outcome is that the large broken picture window in the front of my town home be replaced with a new unbroken window pane. Second, the town home needs to be thoroughly sanitized with carpets shampooed, floors mopped, bathrooms scoured, kitchen and appliances brought back to the cleanliness in which I turned the property over to Madison. Third, the landscaping needs to be restored to a groomed appearance in compliance with the rules and regulations of the ******** ***** Homeowners Association. Fourth, I want my house keys, my garage door openers, and the counter top microwave returned to me. Fifth, I expect no apology nor communication from Madison once these desired outcomes are finalized. I will be delighted to have this nightmare business relationship behind me.

Business Response: To Whom It May Concern:

We have been in communication with Ms. *********.  Please see attached e-mail string.  

The main point of contention is that she wanted to let people into the unit to use at their convenience before our move-out process was completed.  She would have put herself and us at risk and allowing people into the unit prior to the move-out process being completed could have voided any recourse against the former tenants.  We are trying to protect her whether she realizes it or not.  Please see attached e-mail dated July 25, 2014.

We would have gladly handed over keys to Ms. ********* at any time had she signed our release stating that she was taking control of the property and alleviating us from any liability or responsibility for her actions moving forward.  She did not do this and in fact a representative of hers came into our office AFTER this complaint was filed to pick up the release for her.  We had e-mailed it to her prior but had not received it back from her.

Lastly, all of the items requested in her "Desired Settlement" are things we do in the normal course of business on dozens of move-outs each month. All cleaning and repairs are charged towards the tenant and completed up to the amount of the tenant deposit.  Any further expense is the owner's responsibility to forward funds to us and we then pursue the former tenant for reimbursement (up to and including collections if necessary).  Please see detailed move-out condition report documenting deficiencies at the time of tenant move-out.  A detailed set of 298 photos taken at the time of the move-out condition report can be provided to the BBB upon request.

Lastly, all accounting will be done and provided to Ms. *********.  We operate and account for all trust funds according to state law and provide a transparent, open and complete accounting for all funds.  However, as always, we do need reasonable time to complete this process.

Regards,

**** *. *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

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]

BBB,

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.

First of all, after doing business with Madison Property Management for over three years, they fail to spell my name correctly.

Second, the email they submitted to you dated July 25, 2014 was created after the fact specifically for you to think there was an "email string" between us of some sort.  I NEVER received any such email in my inbox nor delete file nor spam file.  They made it up so you would think they communicated with me.  They did not.
Third, I have spent over $350 so far by hiring a laborer to bring my town home's landscaping up to the accepted standard of the ******** ***** Homeowners Association.  Said laborer has billed Madison Property Management, but of course, they have ignored it too.  I have also had the downstairs toilet fixed by a plumber because the last tenant left it so that it would no longer flush.  That came to over $200.  Now I am having the large front picture window replaced and am expecting a bill in the neighborhood of $500.  Madison Property Management is holding a damage deposit of over $1500 from the last tenant who moved out July 21, 2014.  How long does it take Madison Property Management to release to me that damage deposit since they have made absolutely NO effort to clean the filthy mess the last tenant left nor to make any repairs they choose to neglect.  
Fourth, Madison sent me a copy of a release to sign to end our contract to do business.  It was impossible to print it out on my computer.  However, I would not have signed it anyway because it stated that I would have to release Madison from any "past, present, or future" liability regarding my property.  To me, that meant they wanted me to release them from the mess they are supposed to clean up when a tenant vacates.  Madison has done nothing and continues to hold onto the damage deposit earning interest on that money the longer they can keep it.  
Fifth, Madison is lying to you in the same way they lie to everyone.  They have not met their due diligence obligations with me and yet they are proclaiming total innocence to you.  It is so sad that Spokane is such a "good ol' boy" town.  Since moving away, I have come to realize that in Spokane, the "good ol' boys" can conduct business any way they want to and get away with it.  Perhaps I can get a fairer hearing at the State level.  I sense that I have wasted your time and mine in the pursuit of fairness in Spokane by appealing to the Chamber of Commerce which sides with business owners.
     Sincerely,
           ******* *. **********   

Regards,

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

Business Response: First, my apologies if we misspelled Ms. **********'s name.  As someone whose name is frequently misspelled (and mispronounced) I understand her frustration.  It was a simple oversight that would have been corrected if brought to our attention.  However, after reviewing our system, the spelling is the exact same as in this complaint.  So I'm not sure what she has been looking at for three years.

No e-mail was or ever has been "made up."  Anything submitted was printed directly from our e-mail program.

As far as damages and cleaning, it is hard to properly assess and bill a tenant for these items when an owner allows people into the property prior to all repairs and cleaning being done.  We were in the process of cleaning and lining up repairs.  However, her actions and demanding the keys to her property makes it a bit difficult to do our job.  Since Ms. ********** has decide to complicate matters, it will take time to sort out the mess.  The tenant's deposit will be distributed appropriately as soon as possible.  As far as holding on for extra interest, I'm sure that must be a joke.  Holding on to the deposit for 30 days would net us roughly $1.30.  Hardly worth the hassle.

The last point made about "good ol' boys" and the Chamber of Commerce siding with business owners shows a misunderstanding of this process.  The BBB is not the Chamber of Commerce but rather a consumer advocate.  Not sure how to respond other than to point out the facts.

I could go on about the discrepancies in Ms. **********'s story and list the numerous facts she has conveniently omitted, but will stop here unless asked for further information.

Regards,

**** *. *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

Consumer Response:

To:  *************, BBB
     The reason I am not content with the outcome of my complaint #******** is that Madison Property Management has never really answered my question as to why they refuse to honor their contractual promises to fix any problems created by the tenant they rented my town home to.  For example, the last tenant broke the large f***t living room window, left my town home a greasy, hairy mess, left one of the toilets unusable, and left the landscaping a mess of debris and weeds.  Madison retained a damage deposit of $1550 from **. ***** ******, my last tenant who moved out of my town home on July 21, 2014.  Since that time, *** ********* of Madison Property Management has stopped all communication with me and has done nothing to fix all the problems created by the last tenant they put in my town home.
    Here is a summary of the bills I have had to pay to restore my town home to a decent state as of October 2, 2014:
     Large broken window replaced = $429.06
     Landscaping cleanup = $350.00
     Broken toilet repaired = 203.81
     Cleaning and shampooing of carpets = $250.00
     Refrigerator not working, repaired = $198.12
 
     Plus, Madison Property Management has refused to give me back my garage door openers and keys to the entry doors, so I had to have the locks changed for another $150.
     It is now October 2, 2014.  How long does it take them to take care of these items?  What are they doing with the $1550 damage deposit?  Why do they refuse to communicate with me?  Why do they refuse to answer my questions when they respond to you?  How 
can they stay accredited with the Better Business Bureau when they operated so dishonestly?  
     Thank you for forwarding my emails to Madison Property Management.  **** ******* has responded to you, but has not answered specific questions such as "where is the money"?
          Sincerely,
               ******* **********

9/26/2014 Problems with Product/Service | Read Complaint Details
X

Additional Notes

Complaint: I am the owner of a residential property that was managed by Madison Real Estate and Property Management. My contract with Madison was terminated on August 9, 2014 for multiple violations of our contract agreement by Madison Real Estate. I terminated the contract as per the terms sited in the contract via certified mail. On Aug. 1, 2014 I spoke with the president of Madison Real Estate, **** *******, in regards to when I would receive documents essential to the management of the property (lease agreement, home inspection and tenant deposit). Mr ******* told me I could get them on the termination date of the contract. On the morning of Friday, Aug. 8, 2014, I called Madison to find out when and where I could get the documents. I was told no instructions were left for them by **** ******* to give me any of those items and they wouldn't give them to me without his instruction. They said they had no way to contact him but they would call and let me know when **** returned to the office. I did not receive a call back. I called back just before closing that same day and talked to the vice president of Madison Real Estate, *** *********. *** ********* was very rude and told me I would get them when they felt like giving them to me and there was nothing I could do about it. It has been 10 days now since the contract terminated and I haven't heard from them or received any of the requested items.

Desired Settlement: I receive the requested documents as soon as possible and the report of this behavior is made accessible to the public.

Business Response: To Whom It May Concern:

Let me address the assertions in order-

1. Contract Issues: In the effort to clean and repair Mr. *****'s rental home in order to show the home and place a qualified tenant quickly, we conducted work on the property.  This was done in order to rent the property quickly.  We did not intend to upset Mr. *****, only look out for his best interests.  We did find and place a tenant quickly saving Mr. ***** extended vacancy time and giving him income much quicker than otherwise would have occurred.  In addition to that, WE PAID HIM EVERY PENNY WE SPENT ON HIS PROPERTY DURING THE TURNOVER PROCESS (OVER $1,000).  WE PAID TO HAVE HIS PROPERTY CLEANED AND REPAIRED OUT OF OUR POCKET.  So, not only did he get cleaning and repairs done quickly and get a good, qualified tenant placed quickly, HE PROFITED FROM OUR EFFORTS BECAUSE WE WERE TRYING TO DO THE RIGHT THING.

2. Conversation on August 1, 2014:  We did speak and I explicitly told Mr. ***** that he could pick up keys as of the termination date but that the lease and final accounting wouldn't go out to him until about 14 days after the termination date (we technically had 30 days to get everything to him).  We got out the documents promised within the 14 day timeframe I expressed to him on the phone.  This is our standard practice and we have never to my knowledge had a complaint about it.  Mr. ***** had the tenant's contact info and a copy of the lease sent to him upon tenant placement, so there was no issue in managing his property during our turn-around window of 14 days.  To address the communication issue further, Mr. ***** also sent a letter stating that he did not receive a return phone call when requested about the mistake listed in paragraph 1 above.  That was untrue as well.  I left two messages in two consecutive days after his request (apologizing for our oversight and making sure he was satisfied with our refunding $1,000+ to him).  The answering machine was his wife's voice stating both of their names, so I know I did not have a w***g number.  I never received a return call from him.  

3.  No Return Call on August 8, 2014:  We work 12 and 14 hour days in the summertime, many times out of the office at properties (in other words, doing our job).  This is especially true the first ten days of the month when turning properties around to get them ready for rent is very time sensitive.  Expecting a call back in less than 8 hours, from a person doing time-sensitive work out of the office, during the busiest time of the month, is unrealistic in our business.  Mr. ***** was told by me what to expect and when to expect it in our phone conversation on August 1, 2014.  He was told by our office staff what the process was and when he could expect documentation and accounting.

4.  *** ********* Rudeness:  Mr. ***** was belligerent and demanding.  Mr. ********* was firm as Mr. *****'s demeanor was very hostile.  I would not consider Mr. ********* to be rude, but he can be very direct when necessary.

As far as Mr. *****'s desired settlement, he now has the documents promised, in the timeframe promised to him by me personally in the phone call on August 1, 2014.  Additionally, I too wish this report be made public so anyone considering to do business with Mr. ***** will be aware of how he operates.

Neither myself nor my company are perfect.  We make mistakes and when we do we own up to them and try to rectify them as best as possible (such as paying for work even though it means we will lose money, like in this instance).  However, there are times when someone is unreasonable and cannot be satisfied under any circumstances.  Unfortunately, this appears to be one of those times.

Respectfully submitted,

**** *. *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

Consumer Response: <st***g>[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]</st***g>

BBB,

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.

[To assist us in bringing this matter to a close, we would like to know your view on the matter.]

Please see attached.

Regards,

**** *****

Business Response: As I stated in my original response, we made mistakes but did everything in our power to correct them to no avail or satisfaction on the part of Mr. *****.  He came out far ahead both financially and in peace-of-mind due to our efforts.  His lack of communication on the outset (not returning my two phone calls) and misunderstanding of a prior phone conversation is disappointing.  I'm not sure what else to do at this point and hope he finds satisfaction elsewhere.

Regards,

**** *. *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

Consumer Response: [A default letter is provided here which indicates your acceptance of the business' response. If you wish, you may update it before sending it.]

BBB,

I have reviewed the response made by the business in reference to complaint ID ******** and find that this resolution is satisfactory to me. 

Regards,


**** *****

8/22/2014 Billing/Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: We have been tenants of Madison Real Estate for quite some time now we moved in ***** **** *** on March 8, 2012 originally with ***** *** **********. A few months later ***** *** ********** was taken over by Madison Real Estate that when the issues start to begin. We woke up to an eviction three days to vacate notice I called everyday day three times a day to get an answers which I never got for almost a month until i filed a complainant then we got an answer. Same issues with maintenance it took many calls to get our Air Conditioner fixed after i did the required email of issues we had a bird in our kitchen that was not considered an emergency to them but was an issue to us because that caused us not to be able to cook because it was in our kitchen vent over the stove. I am writing because we requested a walk through but was denied we cleaned inside out top to bottom yard work as well. Some of the things that were stated in the condition report were things that were cleaned before we left , we also took pictures we feel like we are being taken advantage of because we moved out of state the condition of the resident was in better shape then it was when we moved in. Granted the minor wear and tear through the home.

Business Response: To Whom It May Concern,

I personally met with the ******'s the afternoon prior to their departure.  They were concerned about getting their full deposit back, so I spent time explaining what I look for on a move-out property condition survey.  Specifically, I said to make sure the home was cleaned so there was no hair, wipe out drawers completely, clean behind the refrigerator and under the stove drawer (two common missed areas), etc.  They told me they were in the military, so I expressed that if they left it like their commanding officer would expect them to leave base housing, there would be no issues.  They said they understood and it would be left in very good condition and cleaned extensively.  

I conducted the move-out condition report and took the move-out condition report photos.  While there was no major damage and the home was left in overall good condition, the cleaning was substandard at best.  Please see attached photos (first attachment) memorializing the condition of the unit the day they turned keys in to our office.

In their previous BBB complaint, the issue of the complaint did not inhibit their ability to cook or use the stove and was reported to our emergency after-hours call center.  It was correctly deemed to NOT be an emergency and they were told we would follow up with them on Monday, which occurred as promised (please see second attachment).  So a non-emergency issue reported on a Saturday and corrected by the following Tuesday (less than 48 business hours later; again, please see second attachment), a quick turnaround by anyone's standards.  Yet, they proceeded to file a BBB complaint.  

As with the previous BBB complaint, the current complaint is also without merit.  We were doing our job correctly and held these tenants accountable for the condition in which the property was left.

Regards,

**** ** *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

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]

BBB, 

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.
Upon our move out the condition of the rental unit was left in great condition our problem is, when we moved to the unit it was very dirty with rat droppings, blinds and floors were not cleaned. This was a transfer property from ***** *** ********** there were no before pictures ever taken and showed to us before we moved in we were to;d to do the cleaning our self and we would be reimbursed for that so we did just that this was told to us by ***** who showed us the unit and also seen the place and set rat traps in our place and our neighbors place as well. There were issues that we called in to maintenance the front door needed to be painted the issue with the bird and replacing the vent. As tenants we kept a clean place and upon the move out did extensive cleaning we do not feel that there were over 600 dollars of damage besides the normal wear and tear. We asked on many occasions for a walk through to take care of any issues before hand we were denied we have just had to many issues and not enough answers on time with this company. 

Regards,

Natalie ******

Business Response: The tenants stated that the place was dirty upon move-in.  They said they were told to clean and that they would be reimbursed by the prior management company.  Since there was no indication in their response that the reimbursement did not happen, we assume the reimbursement occurred.  However, even reimbursement didn't occur, the cleaning items listed in the move-out condition report are not the same items listed by the tenants. Therefore, they created additional cleaning items/charges based on their occupancy.  I refer all parties to this complaint to the attached move-out condition report and move-out photos taken the afternoon tenants returned keys to our office.

Regards,

**** ** *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

8/13/2014 Problems with Product/Service | Complaint Details Unavailable
8/4/2014 Billing/Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: We paid a security deposit of $1845 when we rented ***** * **** **** ******* ******* *** ***** from Madison Real Estate. We cleaned the house and had professional carpet cleaning and professional blind cleaning done. The house looked better than when we moved in. We turned the house over on May 31st, 2014 which was our last day of our lease. Madison Real Estate Sent us a letter postmarked June 12th, 2014 explaining that we would not be getting a refund and owe them $55. In the attached pages to the letter they had a breakdown of charges addressed to a different couple. They also sent us a move-out report that had various repairs or items on it with no charges of any sort on it. When I went in to the office on June 14th, 2014, the receptionist took the 2 pages that had someone else' name, address and rented address and took them back to a lady in the back. After a 8-10 minutes she came back and said the charges are actually yours we just put the wrong name and address on it. I asked her when I could expect a fully detailed statement of the charges since all but 1 charge was estimated and one repair was wrote as MISC REPAIR: Estimated $500 - To be reviewed. She responded that they would probably be around Thursday(06-19-14) the following week. On Monday June 16th I went in to the office with a demand letter for a full refund that stated they had a week to respond and 2 pages of estimated charge rebuttals. Madison Real Estate has not responded to my letter nor has given me a refund. According to RCW 59.18.280 the following statement is not being upheld. 'Within fourteen days after the termination of the rental agreement and vacation of the premises or, if the tenant abandons the premises as defined in RCW 59.18.310, within fourteen days after the landlord learns of the abandonment, the landlord shall give a full and specific statement of the basis for retaining any of the deposit together with the payment of any refund due the tenant under the terms and conditions of the rental agreement' They gave me a statement that was addressed for someone else and had 1 specific charge. The rest were estimated and to be reviewed. They also claimed there were many repairs that were needed. Most of these repairs were in fact the same as when we moved in and proven by pictures also. I also have copies of all the documents sent to us and that I have sent to them if they are needed

Desired Settlement: The business had a responsibility to give me a full and specific explanation of the charges against my security deposit within the time frame allowed. According to RCW 59.18.310 If the landlord fails to give such statement together with any refund due the tenant within the time limits specified above he or she shall be liable to the tenant for the full amount of the deposit. Now I believe they are responsible to give me a refund of my entire security deposit of $1845.

Business Response: Let me start by saying we try to be an equitable arbiter between owners and tenants.  We are not always perfect, but we strive to be fair and objective in all we do at our company.

Let me address Mr. *****'s complaints as I understand them and give our response:

1. "The house looked better than when we moved in."  I strongly disagree with this statement. The current owners bought this property as an investment.  They spend three weeks repairing and cleaning the home prior to us marketing the home for rent.  The *****'s were the first tenants to live in the home since the current owners purchased it and got it into rent-ready condition.  Attached are a few of the the 491 photos taken after the *****'s moved out. These photos are just a sampling of the condition in which the home was left, but should give clear proof the home was not left "in better condition" nor was it left in any acceptable condition at all.  The home was not clean, has massive amounts of pet hair throughout and the bathrooms had hair and residue left throughout as well.  Again, the attached photos are just a sampling, more photos are available if needed.

2. Accounting and Refund of Deposit.  It is standard industry practice, and a practice accepted by the courts, to give an initial disposition if a final accounting is not able to be produced in the 14 day time frame as outlined by RCW 59.18.280.  Additionally, the portion of RCW 59.18.280 that was not included in the complaint is the following: "The landlord is also barred in any action brought by the tenant to recover the deposit from asserting any claim or raising any defense for retaining any of the deposit unless the landlord shows that circumstances beyond the landlord's control prevented the landlord from providing the statement within the fourteen days or that the tenant abandoned the premises as defined in RCW 59.18.310."  Due to the condition the house was left in when the *****'s moved out, we were not able to complete the cleaning and repairs.  This is a situation "out of the landlord's control" and the exact reason this additional clause is part of RCW 59.18.280.  Therefore an initial disposition with estimated accounting went out withing the allowed timeframe (sent on June 12, 2014).  The fact that they came in with a "demand" letter for a full refund on June 16, 2014 is irrelevant to this process and their demand is not in accordance with the law. 

3. RCW 59.18.310.  This section of RCW Chapter 59.18 refers to Default in rent and abandonment of the premises by a tenant.  I am not quite sure why the reference was made to this section other than it is referenced in 59.18.280 in regards to tenant abandonment.  Clarification is requested.

As of this date, the tenant has only received an initial disposition.  These are estimated charges and are typically, but not always, higher than the actual charges.  However, we have to estimate figures to comply with the timeframe prescribed by law and these estimated figures are usually higher than the actual cost. Once invoices are received, charges are adjusted to reflect actual costs.  

A final disposition (full accounting) will be processed once all cleaning and repair invoices are received in our office.  Once the final accounting is completed and sent to the tenant, any disputes can be resolved through our Secondary Deposit Disposition Review process.  The tenant is welcome to contact our office to start that process if needed once the final disposition is received.

Regards,

**** *. *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

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]

BBB,

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.

1. "The house looked better than when we moved in."  I strongly disagree with this statement. The current owners bought this property as an investment.  They spend three weeks repairing and cleaning the home prior to us marketing the home for rent.  The *****'s were the first tenants to live in the home since the current owners purchased it and got it into rent-ready condition.  Attached are a few of the the 491 photos taken after the *****'s moved out. These photos are just a sampling of the condition in which the home was left, but should give clear proof the home was not left "in better condition" nor was it left in any acceptable condition at all.  The home was not clean, has massive amounts of pet hair throughout and the bathrooms had hair and residue left throughout as well.  Again, the attached photos are just a sampling, more photos are available if needed.

"Due to the condition the house was left in when the *****'s moved out, we were not able to complete the cleaning and repairs.  This is a situation "out of the landlord's control" and the exact reason this additional clause is part of RCW 59.18.280.  "

- When we moved in the house was not clean or in rent-ready condition. It also smelled of cat urine in the master bedroom and the stairway. This was being masked by over 5 plugin air fresheners. When the owners came to replace the dishwasher ******* even asked my wife if the house was clean when we moved in. When we moved out the house was clean and the only part of the house that was not cleaned was the little closet in the living room. We had the carpets professionally cleaned after we had already moved out of the house. It was left in an acceptable condition. There should have been no reason that, as you stated, for a company to come in and do cleaning and repairs, in a timely manner. If you had made a phone call to a cleaning company they would have been able to accomodate you within 2-3 days. There is a reason that your company doesn't allow a final walk-through as part of turning in the keys. One would only assume this would be so that you could sabotage their cleaning efforts. Where are the pictures of something that isn't a close up of hair in carpet? Where are the pictures that show there wasn't trash littered through-out the house? The house was in a condition that could have been cleaned in a couple hours by a cleaning company if needed. The house was not in a condition that you shouldn't have been able to complete the cleaning and repairs in 14 days. This claim that you are unable to have someone come in and have the house rent-ready in 14 days is bogus and was "in the landlord's control"


Regards,

****** *****

Business Response: To Whom It May Concern:

There were at least four vendors we had to coordinate with in order to get the home in rent-ready condition.  Between the time the keys were turned in on a Saturday, move-out condition photos were taken and report was written, vendors scheduled, work completed and invoices received for work completed; going beyond the 14 day timeframe was indeed reasonable.  Had the *****'s left the home in good condition, they would have easily gotten the disposition and corresponding refund back within 14 days.  This, however, was not the case.  

The statement that the home was "left in acceptable condition" is ridiculous.  The close up pictures of all the hair (pet and human) left behind is more than sufficient evidence to any reasonable person that the home was left dirty and in poor condition.   However, if the tenant would like us to provide the BBB more photos documenting the condition of the property at move-out we are happy to accommodate.  

In my previous response, I said I would provide all 490 move-out photos if needed to show the poor condition of the home at move-out.  Here is the dropbox link to view all 490 of those photos:

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

After reviewing the photos, there should be no doubt that the property was left in an extremely unacceptable condition at move-out.

Additionally I have attached the move-out condition report to further detail my assertion that the property was left in unacceptable condition.

Regards,

**** *. *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.

Consumer Response: BBB,

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.

We still have not received any final disposition and we are 2 months past? We also would like receipts provided for all vendors that you are saying had to be called. This still surprises me that any reasonable or respectable company couldn't complete cleaning of pet and human hair and patch a couple of minor holes in 14 days. You do have photos that a reasonable person would think are showing a cleaned house other than your close-ups of hair. You can definitely count on that we will never utilize your company for any of our future property managements and that we will never recommend or refer business to your unreasonable company. After your final disposition shows up we will decide if we have to take legal action since we are already in contact with a law firm.

Regards,

****** *****

7/16/2014 Problems with Product/Service | Complaint Details Unavailable
6/27/2014 Problems with Product/Service | Read Complaint Details
X

Additional Notes

Complaint: During the course of the management of my rental property, Madison has ignored some requests for information, collected and attempted to collect money that has not been authorized. **** ******* has also specifically not provided any proof of contract with myself to collect additional fees. Multiples attempts have been made at communication, and ultimately, Madison has ignored our disagreement and decided to collect money from my rental account without authorization. Madison has poorly managed my property over 3 years and continues to attempt to collect monies that are not authorized.

Desired Settlement: Full refund of monies that Madison has collected ($578.88), and to cease any additional attempts to collect unauthorized fees.

Business Response:

To Whom It May Concern:

We have repeatedly communicated with *** ***** as to the money owed to us for breaking his contract.  On December 20, 2013, *** ***** requested a copy of his contract and one was sent to him within two hours of his request (see attached Exhibit 1 that includes a copy of contract sent).  Additionally, he was confused as to the communications he had already sent in writing, so I’m assuming the lack of communication may have been an oversight on his part (see example of such in Exhibit 2).

At no time did we ignore requests for information (again, see attach e-mails referenced above) nor at any time did we collect any unauthorized money per RCW 59.18 (the Residential Landlord-Tenant Act).  The only charges he could possibly be referencing are the locksmith charges.  However, according to RCW 59.18.060 the landlord has the duty to provide adequate locks to the tenant.  That provision in the Code has been interpreted to include all locks shall be changed out after each tenancy at landlord expense.  This only makes sense from a safety and liability standpoint, as well as a legal matter.  *** ***** had hand-written a clause in his contract (tenants shall pay for lock changes) that is therefore in direct violation of RCW 59.18.060.  That clause is void due to the fact it is not legal.  Even if it had been legal, he saw the locksmith charges occur for three years and never made comment or complained until he breached his contract and discovered money was due to our company.

We have made our position clear to *** ***** on several occasions but he did not want to accept our answer.  His interpretation of the contract is incorrect yet he still is trying to argue otherwise.  We have even attempted to settle with him for a lesser amount than rightfully owed to amicably resolve the situation to no avail (see Exhibit 4 attached).

Additionally, once *** ***** cancelled the contract he realized transition to a new management company could not take place as fast as he had wanted. We graciously agreed to extend service for an additional month at time and expense to us to deliver new notices to the existing tenants.  We did this as a gesture of good faith to prevent his properties from being un-managed for a period of time.  

We have explained our position to *** ***** on several occasions and at a certain point arguing the same point repeatedly is not beneficial to anyone.  

We have been accused of poorly managing the property (I disagree), accused of lying about property visits (I provided proof of the contrary in the form of dated photos, see Exhibit 3). 

When we are wrong, we take responsibility and do what we can to make things right.  The BBB has proof of this in previous experiences with our firm.  However, in this case, *** ***** knows his arguments will not stand up in court and seems to be attempting to intimidate us through the BBB.  

Once again, I will extend the offer of settling for a lesser amount than the $900.00 still owed but will not waive the fees entirely.  A contract was breached, for which there are consequences.  I will await the complainant's response.

 

Regards,

 

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

President

Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.


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]

BBB,

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.

First, I would like to set a precedence regarding this disagreement. I have never signed any contract or agreement with Madison, which can be seen in paragraph 1 in (Exhibit 1). The contract that I had signed with the previous company exclusively excludes any parties not mentioned in the contract. As far as I was concerned, there was no contract to breach, so ending the management of the property with Madison should have been simple. There was no confusion on my part, which *** ******* condescendingly implied. I had a contract with Prodigy, not Madison. It was only later on that *** ******* began to elude that he had drafted a document to transfer all previous Prodigy contracts to Madison.

*** ******* was not being truthful when stating, "At no time did we ignore requests for information..." *** ******* explicitly denied my request for proof that there was a legal transfer of the contract to Madison, (See Exhibit 2). Based on *** *******'s unwillingness to provide proof of the contracts transfer, I gave him the benefit of the doubt by extending the timeline, per the contract with Prodigy, to 60 days notice. Despite multiple emails to explain that I wanted to fulfill the contract, *** ******* would not accept the 60 days required by the contract with Prodigy to end the agreement. I emailed multiple times that my full intent was to complete the contract in full, and he would not give a direct answer. I began to get the impression that he was trying to avoid the 60 days so that he would attempt to say that there was a breach of contract, which is exactly what happened. (See Exhibit 3)

*** ******* has been unwilling or unable to provide proof that he has any legal contract to enforce, but has still felt free to charge me based on assumptions that he is owed money. *** ******* automatically deducted the "breach of contract fee" from the properties account, and has still been trying to collect more. Even if the contract was legally transferred, his interpretation of the contract was to try to collect regardless of our disagreement, see the termination fees in (Exhibit 4). Even if the contract was legally transferred to Madison, I made every attempt to fulfill the 60 day requirement, which was not a breach of the Prodigy contract.

*** ******* was resolved to not communicate anymore because he had already collected some of the “breach of contract money” that he felt owed. *** ******* has continued to attempt to collect an additional $900, see the “End of Managment agreement fee for Feb-Aug” in (Exhibit 5). My concern is that I will never see the money that Madison collected, and that *** ******* will attempt to send me to collections based on an assumption, which will cost me additional time and money. The only resolution suggestion that I have received from Madison is that they will collect money, not that possibly they are in the wrong.

I have been to the property a few times, which is rare since I live out of town. The few times that I have visited, there have been items that should have been caught if the property was being regularly visited. One example was a futon frame that was sitting by the dumpster for quite a while, and was never mentioned to me. In addition, each of the four recent tenants said that they were treated horribly and would move if Madison wasn't replaced. There have been also several occasions where units were not rented for several months, and after discovering that all of my current tenants feel negatively toward Madison, I have a guess why my units have not stayed rented. These issues are not the root of my complaint. Since I no longer work with Madison, my one remaining concern is the disagreement of owed money.

I don't believe that Madison has always tried to make things right. First there have been 19 claims against Madison through the BBB in the last 3 years, which may or may not have been resolved. The simple quantity is disconcerting. Then there are 4 customer reviews through the BBB, which are all negative as well. Then there are more negative comments on Yelp. As far as *** *******'s assumptions regarding taking this to court, his presumptions couldn't be more wrong. First, I don't have time to devote this issue to small claims. Second, I am more concerned with making sure that a mediated solution is pursued, which Madison has ignored. Instead *** ******* has chosen just to deduct the money directly from my properties account. Also, I think that it is an absurd statement that someone would try to intimidate a company by going through the BBB. The company’s complaints speak for themselves.

In conclusion, I point to the fact that *** ******* has no proof of a viable contract, and has been unwilling to budge. I am suspicious when someone is not willing to provide proof that a contract has been transferred, but still collects money from my account. There have been no consequences for Madison, because they manage the properties account. Madison felt obliged to collect what they felt they were owed, and continue to attempt to collect an additional $900 regardless of the facts. Based on the above facts, I believe that Madison should return the money already deducted from my property's account and discontinue pursuing the additional $900.


Regards,

***** *****

Business Response: First, my apologies in not responding in a timely manner.  I have been out of the office for a week and prior to that have been dealing with some health issues.

 
Let me address the points in order:
  1. *** ***** does have a contract with us.  His management contract with Prodigy was assignable and the management contract was assigned to us through legal means as of January 1, 2010.  There was no document drafted "after the fact" and no claim of such.
  2. Yes, I am denying *** ***** access to a legal agreement between Madison and Prodigy with sensitive and personal information.  If required to produce it through the courts I will, but not until then as it will take considerable time to redact all personal and private details contained in the contract.  However, *** ***** was notified in writing by both Prodigy and Madison of the assignment of contract via letters sent prior to the January 1, 2010 transfer.  The management contract clearly states the contract is assignable.  In addition, by allowing Madison to manage his property for over four years under the terms of the management contract, I would suspect the law would consider that consent and acceptance of a contact between the parties.
  3. We agree to disagree with *** *****'s account of the termination process as he requested a copy of his management contract from us, obviously not having a copy to refer to himself.  We provided a copy of the management contract in a timely manner.
  4. *** ***** is misinterpreting the 60 day termination clause.  He believes it is 60 days at will and the contract clearly states it needs to be 60 days before the anniversary to avoid penalty.
  5. We would have gladly attempted to address the futon issue, but *** ***** would like us to charge a tenant for the futon being left at the dumpster.  Without proof of who left it, who are we to charge?
  6. *** *****'s four-plex is in a college town.  It stands to reason that he is to expect periods of vacancy in the summer.  Full attempts were always made to market and fill his vacancies.
  7. In regards to the supposed tenant complaints, it is common for tenants to "throw us under the bus" to owners.  They want to portray themselves in the best light possible and make us out to be the "bad guy." Even more so when we are dealing with younger college students who need to be held accountable and feel as though they should be able to live without rules and standards.  
  8. As far as BBB complaints are concerned, we are not perfect and openly admit to that fact.  Additionally, we work in a business in which we routinely have two parties that expect to be satisfied (tenant v. owner) and we can typically only satisfy one party.  If we didn't have some complaints, we wouldn't be doing our job for the owners we serve. 
  9. Considering we manage 480+ rental units, turn over 200+ units a year and deal with approximately 370 owners, we have had a MINIMUM of 1,250 customer interactions in a three year period, 19 complaints isn't too bad.   Out of all of those interactions, having a complaint percentage of only 1.5% is pretty good in our estimation.  Especially when you consider that we are in an extremely contentious business in which we have an obligation and legal duty to hold people accountable for their actions.
  10. *** ***** should take notice that most of our complaints are disgruntled tenants who in most cases were held accountable for damages to property.  In such cases we commonly hear "if you don't give us our money back we are going to file a complaint with the BBB, Yelp, etc."  We work for our owners and will gladly take the occasional hit to our BBB record to do the right thing for our owners, even if the claims are false and meant to be malicious.  In a few of the cases, we were in the wrong, admitted so and refunded some monies to the tenant.  However, those cases are in the minority.
  11. One more time, as I have said in every communication regarding this issue, I am willing to look at any offer to settle this matter.  However, we will not drop it completely nor will we refund money rightfully owed our company under terms *** ***** willingly agreed to by entering into the property management contract.  I encourage him to make an offer of settlement of the debt owed and begin the process of negotiating a compromise before we are forced to take further action. 
Regards,
 
**** ** *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.
 
 

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]

BBB,

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.

[To assist us in bringing this matter to a close, we would like to know your view on the matter.]

Regards,
***** ***** 

**** *******,

 

I apologize for my late response. I have not been able to respond to the complaint due to family issues within the 7 days. I however wanted to let you know that the issue was not resolved.

 

My simple response to *** *******’s last post:

 

1.      He could have simply provided a copy of the legal document that transferred the ownership of the contract to Madison, and marked out any personal information of other clients. He would not provide any proof that he has a legal contract with me. It is fairly simple to hide information in a copy of a document.

2.      Why would I pay a business an arbitrary amount that I have no proof of contract. Any other business would not pay an amount to another company that would not provide legal proof of a living contract. Especially when the previous contract explicitly denies any other party from taking over the contract.

 

I do not believe someone should be paid on “Faith” that a company transferred a contract. That is foolish business practice. I am asking for simple proof that he has any right to the additional monies that he claims. I think the hesitancy to provide proof of a contract is suspect.

 

Thank you,

 

***** *****

2/19/2014 Problems with Product/Service | Read Complaint Details
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Additional Notes

Complaint: I went in to this establishment to resolve an issue with rent payment. I had received an email from one of their employees saying that we only owed $50.24 as a final balance. Since ******* only accepts a money order or cashier check you can see my frustration when I arrived to their location and find out that we owe $150.24. As I was trying to explain to them that we cannot just keeping driving in and out of Spokane from Cheney, an employee (Who's information I have) decides to literally yell at me because I "Interrupted His Sentence." I was treated incredibly poorly and I feel that something needs to be done about this. This isn't the first time that i have been treated poorly by them and i have a plethora of emails to prove it.

Desired Settlement: An apology is acceptable but i feel that the individual who yelled at me should have some sort of consequence for their action.

Business Response:
I was the person *** ******* referred to in his complaint.  Here are the details:

1- *** ******* and his roommate were almost one month late with their rent.
2- Our office had been working with them to get the late rent resolved.
3- When *** ******* came into the office I was at the front and he was being disrespectful to one of my employees (our bookkeeper).
4- I attempted to explain the situation and was repeatedly interrupted.
5- I raised my voice in the attempt to finish a sentence without being interrupted.  It was far from yelling, however *** ******* took the opportunity to escalate his rude behavior.
6- *** ******* stormed out of the office while his roommate stayed and got things handled in a somewhat more reasonable manner.

When anyone on my team is being treated in a disrespectful manner, I will not stand by and let it happen.  My bookkeeper extended every grace and courtesy available trying to work with ** ******* and his roommate, yet she got nothing but grief for it the day he was in my office.  Should anyone treat my employees in that manner in the future, my reaction will be no different.  No apology is forthcoming, nor is one warranted. 

**** ** *******
President
Madison Real Estate and Property Management, Inc.



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