Ionia Residents Surprised By Eviction Warnings

By: Brian Johnson Email
By: Brian Johnson Email

85 renters, many of whom are elderly, some on fixed incomes and others receiving government aid to pay for housing are being told they'll have to find a new place to live if they don't pay their rent. The problem is, they did. Confusion between the old and new management companies have residents worried about their future.

"I thought what the heck is this," said Marcia Sweet, who lives at the apartments.

"I couldn't believe it, because I sent them my rent," said Phyllis Redvict, another resident.

The renters at Bellview received a "demand for possession" notice. It's the first step in a two-month legal process that landlords take to evict bad renters.

"Today's my birthday," said Redvict. "And I got an eviction notice."

For residents like Redvict, who receive government aid to help with the rent, the notice came as a shock.

"They should have checked into the housing thing before they sent out all these notices," she said. "You know some of these people are really old. What if they got the notice and had a heart attack, you know?"

Redvict is not alone in her frustration. Just a few doors down, Marcia Sweet's husband is struggling with cancer.

"Just a little more stress than I needed. Yeah, basically. And he didn't need it at all, so, it just adds to the day-to-day stress that we have right now." said Sweet.

Mark Hentamn, the owner of MTH, the property management company, said the company is dealing with the issue right now and reviewing it's information. He said the only reason why the legal notices were sent to many of the resident's was as a first step in the legal process to protect the building owner. He says any property management company would do the same.

Some of the billing issues were caused by poor communication during the management company changes that happened on August 1. He said the previous company that managed the buildings didn't give them all the records showing tenants had paid. MTH had sent out the notices before the company was informed off all the payments.

"I don't think it's necessary to send that stuff out, they should be more on top of it so that they know that you've paid your rent for heaven's sakes," said Sweet.

The renters hope MTH will resolve the billing issues, before taking paying renters to court.

Some of the renters we spoke to complained about cockroaches in their apartments and other maintenance issues. MTH says it's doing it's job.


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