Residents at Astorwood Apts. facing eviction

Residents at Astorwood Apts. facing eviction

Frustrations are boiling over for Jake Lunsford and his neighbors at the Astorwood Apartments in Stuart.

"These people are trying to bully these people for every penny that they can because they know that they can," he says.

Notices left at their doors Tuesday only add to their frustrations.
"We have three days to pay them the rent of this month that we didn't pay," he says.

The letters say they face eviction if they don't pay.

Jake, however, says he has good reason not to give them a dime. 
He says mold, bug and rat infestations, structural problems and other issues have overrun their apartments - issues they say they've been complaining about for months.

RELATED: Stuart apartments deemed dangerous by city
The City of Stuart recently stepped in, finding a total of 19 code violations - forcing code enforcement to place orange danger signs on their buildings and scheduling a court hearing to discuss the matter. 
That court hearing was delayed till next month. 
“How am I supposed to have my family over for dinner when there's a danger keep out sign on my window, and you expect me to continue to pay thousands of dollars?” Lunsford says.

NewsChannel 5 pressed the regional property manger Kelly Davis on that very question not once but twice. 
Davis referred us to a marketing coordinator for the management company, Nicki London. 
Our calls to London were met by voicemail. 
Meanwhile, over Richard Youst's home, there's mold in his vents, cabinets, around his entire apartment.
He says his mother has been sick since July. 
"The doctor just declared it mold related, because now she has an infection," Youst says.
He is one of many here standing defiant -and refusing to pay up. 
"You want your rent money?" Youst says. "You got black mold, you got electrical, you got fire issues, you got rats in the attic. Like…c'mon."

Attorneys for the property management company, Friedman Integrated Real Estate, says that delay in the court date was to give them more time to put a repair plan together.

That plan could take 18 months to put into action - meaning residents could be waiting a while before any of these issues are fixed.

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