Home & Garden Apartment Trouble!

lovemelon

O.G.
Jan 24, 2009
303
1
Okay I just want some advice from lovely TPFers!

I just recently leased an apartment and they promised me that there was a wood burning fireplace in the apartment. They had showed me a model of the apartment and said it was exactly like the model.

Come in move in date.... It DOES NOT HAVE a fireplace..... No woodburning or electric or anything.... A company owns that apartment complex and a few others.

The leasing agent said that he cannot lower my rent, because that is non-negiotable, but because they were at fault they would let me move in to another apartment with a fireplace.... The problem is it won't be open till Dec 16!!!!! That means I have to live for one month in this apartment and then transfer electricity, insurance, and move all my furniture when that months comes. They aren't offering anything except that I can move into that apartment and not pay a cleaning fee for the apartment I'm moving out of.

Just curious if you guys think this is fair? Or should I keep bothering them to give me another option? Or ask them to pay the costs associated with moving my furniture? Or just give up?

Honestly I'm a 95lb and 5'1 girl... I cannot move a coach down three stairs and up another three stairs (both apartments are on the third floor) and move a bed and mattress........ I cannot ask my parents as they live three hours away and my Dad has an upcoming surgery in Dec for a torn arm ligment. I also don't have currently in my budget to hire someone to move all these things for me as well.

I'm currently lost.... and need of help!

Thanks!
(I don't mind if I have to hear the harsh reality. If I can't do anything then it would be great just to hear that so I know what action is the best. Thank you!)
 

aklein

Member
Dec 30, 2007
10,683
2
Tenant laws and landlord responsibilities can vary quite a bit depending on what state you are in. Have you looked up what the tenant rights for your state are?
Did you get it in writing that the fireplace would be installed before you moved in? Was it in your lease? If it's not, you may not have much recourse.
I just want to make sure I am understanding this correctly, you didn't actually see the apartment you would be moving into. You just saw the model.
 

lovemelon

O.G.
Jan 24, 2009
303
1
I live in VA so I think tonight I'll research a bit on tenant laws. Yes, they didn't allow me to see the apartment until I signed the papers as it wasn't ready. And they only gave me the keys after I signed. They showed me a model and gave me a floor layout that has the fireplace on it. I asked them specifically if the model was exactly the same. They said yes its the exact same floorplan.

Thanks for your quick reply.
 
Jan 22, 2009
201,620
9,543
SoFla
I'm a landlord. it doesn't sound fair, but like aklein said, I'm not sure what the laws are in your area (& therefore, your remedy). if you didn't get anything in writing about the fireplace before you signed the papers (or in the paperwork you signed), I think you might be out of luck.

rental markets are tough right now, & finding a good tenant isn't easy. if you have excellent references & can prove your good rental history, I'd keep pushing them for more. remind them that they said the apartment would be the same as the model they showed you. it might be considered a "bait & switch" which might not be legal in your area.
 

CocoMeow

Member
Oct 23, 2011
926
1
Does it state anywhere in the contract that the apartment is to have a wood buring fireplace? Or anything that indicates something similar? There may be a landlord-tenant act phone number you can call and ask about your rights and what you can do.

Im sorry.. I know how frusterating apartment living can be. They always like to screw people around..
 

lovemelon

O.G.
Jan 24, 2009
303
1
Well the first application I signed didn't have any information about the apartment just the address. Then on move in date I had to sign the lease before I get the keys to the apartment. Once I got the keys I got to see my actual apartment. I mean I guess it's just the principal!

They actually did something illegal! They pressured me into the apartment because I put down the assessment fee or whatever. Well I just wrote my name on the paper and then I had second thoughts. Then they were like well if you just write your name you already started the application so you owe us $450 non refundable! I found out that this is illegal in my state as if the tenant doesn't rent within the next two months it has to be refunded!

I asked for a copy of the lease and they said that currently they didn't have one, but I can get it later when I signed!!!

I've just graduted in May and this is my first apartment. I just feel lost and in some ways duped/scammed... And my apartmentis NOT cheap at $1200 a month..... (although I guess most rental prices in this neighborhood run around this much)

I found a line that I can call to find out more about tenant laws....Ill update later with good news hopefully
 
Jan 22, 2009
201,620
9,543
SoFla
^it definitely sounds like they were being shady. I'm sorry you had to experience that. it also sounds like you may have some grounds against them. I hope that someone can help you with your state's laws when you make that phone call today.
 

lovemelon

O.G.
Jan 24, 2009
303
1
I found out that under tenant laws, what they did would be considered something in which I can file a civil suit against. And I should have been given the option to cancel the lease with no penalty.

I decided to try to reach the highest person of that company that owns the apartment.

I mean I just don't know if filing a civil suit is worth it..... Or the additional cost to move.... That's why I feel so angry that I can't do anything in this situation. (The fireplace wouldn't have been a big deal if they didn't treat me the way they did when I first signed the application)
 

bnjj

Jovi Junkie
O.G.
Apr 20, 2007
10,215
14
Bon Jovi Blvd.
Wow,they're certainly shady aren't they? They would not let you view your unit until after the lease was signed? I have never heard of such a thing. We own upwards of 50 condos that we rent out and no one has ever signed a lease without viewing the unit. How very odd.

Best of luck to you. I would continue to pressure them.
 

beachy10

Member
Mar 11, 2010
2,651
49
Planet Earth
Did you do a walk through to note any damages? They do sound very shady. I would not sign a lease without seeing the actual apartment first. Hopefully you can get them to pay for the move.