HOUSTON – Life after the flood has led to quite a smackdown between tenants and landlords in Greenspoint.
Yep, both sides have come out swinging.
“People are struggling out here,” resident Matthew Taylor told reporters at his apartment complex. “Some people have lost their whole everything. ”
But property owner Steve Moore says he’s giving residents a break. “Every resident that was flooded we gave 25 percent off May rent,” he announced.
But some residents say they are being thrown out.
“And I’m getting charged the full amount, plus late fees, then I come home and get an eviction note?” two-year resident Mary Vasquez confronted Moore. “How fair is that?”
Moore says his landlords are doing a great job.
“There is no property management company that manages low-income properties in Houston that does a better job,” Moore insisted. “…That’s more dedicated to the residents than we are. None. Not even close.”
But a group called the Texas Organizing Project says many residents are up in arms over how they are being treated.
“Unfortunately nothing has been resolved,” one rep declared. “Many residents are stuck between a rock and a hard place.”
“I have a hole in my wall through to the next neighbor’s apartment,” Taylor described. “I have wires hanging out. Everything is just not livable.”
Vasquez claims after she complained about none of her appliances working, she was still charged full rent. “And you’re demanding me to pay you rent, and this is my last month on your lease?” Vasquez questioned. “And then your manager is treating me like crap?”
Moore says most residents are cooperating with management. “To be a landlord– a good owner– in this neighborhood is a tough job,” he said. “It’s a very tough job.”
“He’s lying through his teeth,” one resident charged. “And I don’t think that’s right.”
“I have nowhere to go,” Vasquez explained. “My husband’s been out of work for two weeks due to the flood.”
So what’s Moore’s response to the disgruntled residents?
“There’s always going to be some that fall through the cracks,” he confessed. “I guarantee that we’re not perfect.”
Yeah, it sounds like you can sure that again.
Perhaps both sides can call it a draw before things get ugly!
This story originally appeared 5/18/2016 on CW 39.