Residents at East Hollywood apartment building complain about deplorable living conditions

- Shocking and deplorable living conditions at an East Hollywood apartment complex now have the city involved and residents begging for help.

They say their apartments leak and flood every time it rains and that management has done nothing about it. But management says they've gone above and beyond to help

Residents here say its like a water park when it rains and the problem going on for months with no action from management.

The building is located at 1100 block Westmoreland it may look fine from the outside, but once you step inside it's a whole other story.

It began with water seeping through every part of the ceiling. And it ended with part of that ceiling collapsing.

Adrian Guerrero has lived at 1144 Westmoreland for the past nine years. And like many of the residents who call this building home an early December rainstorm left his apartment in ruins.

He says instead of making repairs management only removed and demolished.

Matilde Castillo has lived here for eleven years and she says her apartment has needed repairs since September.

On October 18th the city ordered her landlord to repair her roof for a lack of waterproofing and two months later this is what it looks like after the rain.

This is now reality for many of the residents living here some of whom have to just sit outside because their apartments are no longer liveable.

In late November before the rainstorm the city issued an order to comply to building management for code violations and ordered repairs to be done by January 2nd.

An attorney representing building management told FOX 11 that residents have denied management access to their apartments and said in part:

'The most affected units, which are units # 1, 6, 7 and 5, have temporary housing ready, waiting and available for their temporary location. For units #2, 3, 4 and 8, we can have similarly comparable units ready as soon as the tenants advise that they are ready to go.

Similarly, we have licensed and bonded movers ready to be at the tenants’ disposal to assist them in moving their belongings.'

But residents say that just isn't true.

Joe Aguilar (Mom is resident of 30 years), 'They offered that we were gonna get $200 per diem, that we were gonna get relocated from a hotel, and that we were gonna get an assurance to come back after all the repairs were done but that promise was done in bad faith, they never went through with it, and now we’re all here in limbo, we don’t know what we’re gonna do.'

Statement from the attorney:

'As you’ll see in the attached email to the tenants’ attorney, Daniel Lavi, as of last week, the landlord and manager have made offers to the tenants over and above what is required of the law. The tenants do not have a right to demand placement in hotels and the apartments we have offered are either equivalent or better than their current premises. In addition, while landlord has refunded the tenants' December rents, this is NOT in lieu of relocation costs, but in addition to, which, again, is in excess of what is required under the law.

The landlord has made offers to the tenants to relocate permanently and generously offered amounts in excess of the Los Angeles RSO statutory minimums. That offer was rejected. The landlord has now made offers to relocate temporarily, and we are still waiting for a response from tenant’s attorney, who has not contacted us today.

The facts are that the landlord and management have been extremely proactive in a difficult situation not of their own making. When the roof was damaged, the landlord and manager hired a licensed, bonded, insured roofer to repair it. The roofer did an incomplete and negligent job, after which L.A. suffered heavy rains last week, now necessitating further repairs to the units.

However, there is no way to know the extent or appropriate scope of the repairs without the tenants permitting the landlord access to inspect the units to make such determinations with their contractors and insurance adjusters, who will ultimately be performing and paying for the work, respectively. The tenants’ refusal to permit entry after a legal notice was posted is in violation of the law (Civil Code s 19454) and their leases, and directly interferes with the landlord and manager’s attempts to service the renters and their units.

Further, the reason the 3 day notices were posted is that because of tenants’ refusal to permit lawful entry, the landlord simply had no other option. We have numerous witnesses to this unlawful behavior, including members of the LAPD.

The landlord has posted new 24-hour notices to enter to inspect the apartments on Sunday, December 16, 2018, for entry tomorrow, December 18, 2018 (see attached images). The tenants are REQUIRED by law to permit entry. However, if the tenants do not permit entry again, we will have no choice but to post new 3 day notices to cure or quit, and then proceed with eviction.

The landlord and management are doing everything they can to get these tenants’ apartments repaired as soon as possible and as efficiently as possible. Apparently, the tenants are getting advice from others which is contrary to the law and appears to be in the interests of these third parties and not in the tenants’ best interests.

If they choose to follow such unwise advice and proceed in violation of the law, they are leaving the landlord and manager with no choice.

The landlord and management want what is best for all parties, and that is for the tenants to be relocated at no cost to them with minimal interference and to get their apartments repaired quickly.

However, to accomplish that, the tenants and their attorney have to cooperate. To date, we have not seen any cooperation from them, but rather, to their own detriment, only interference with the landlord and manager’s attempt to service their units.

As discussed earlier, the above and attached are the ONLY statements/documents I am placing on the record. Any other conversations or statements were off the record and I am expecting that no other statements or documents will be used, as per your legal and ethical obligations.'

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