SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Two months after an exclusive KOLR 10 Investigates report exposed holes in their lease agreement and their garage ceiling, renters Kevin Aderholt and Madison Allen have a dry roof.
“We wouldn’t be sitting here on this new couch in this new place if it wasn’t for KOLR 10,” said Allen.
Oakridge properties manages the townhomes that Gordon Elliott owns. KOLR 10 Investigates dug into the couple’s rental agreement, which showed the landlord promised to repair mold issues and the garage roof by winter. But by February, their garage at Deeswood Village unit 1615B was falling apart, covered in mold, and leaking rainwater.
“I feel like we were robbed of our first six months here,” said Allen. “It wasn’t a pleasant experience.”
New to Missouri and unsure where to turn for help, the pair reached out to KOLR 10 Investigates for a way out.
Attempts to improve safety at the Springfield townhouse labeled with a dangerous building warning began in early February. But repairs fell short of city standards. KOLR 10 Investigates obtained the report for an inspection done later that month. It showed the beam in the garage was installed incorrectly, the deck post was not in compliance with the building code, and the garage ceiling was still leaking.
Oakridge Properties has since credited the couple almost $5,000 to move out and into a new home under different management. The director at Deeswood Village, Barbara Withers, confirmed they let the couple out of their lease and refunded their rent for January, February, and March, and paid $1,800 in moving expenses.
“I feel like now being out of there, a weight is lifted off our shoulders,” said the couple. “I’m sleeping better at night. I don’t think any of that would really have happened if it weren’t for y’all. We’re grateful.”
In a letter, Withers said maintenance workers couldn’t maneuver around the couple’s dogs and that’s why managers asked the renters to vacate. That same letter says the roof repairs are done now, but still need approval from city inspectors.
Although the unit, which has yet to pass a city inspection for the repairs, is showing up online available for rent now, Withers said the property is not rentable in its current state. Withers said it’s common practice to list units on the market once previous renters move out regardless of whether they’re move-in ready.
Springfield city inspectors are scheduled to visit the property again on April 22 to check for building code compliance.
“We appreciate KOLR 10 for taking the time to hear our story and caring about us enough to get our word out,” they said. “We really did feel cared for.”
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