We recently received this note from a Bay View renter who was having problems with getting his landlord to repair his apartment. Thankfully, this renter found Community Advocates' Housing Department and the assistance of our Housing Advocate, Jo-el. Here’s the note:
Since signing on to my current leased home in Bay View this past March, I have encountered a battery of issues inclusive of electrical, plumbing, ventilation, landscaping, and others which at the worst point led to the city turning off the water. I lived out of a hotel at my expense for more than a week.
My rent has been paid monthly on time without hesitation, but even today not one single item on my 30-day move-in inspection submitted to the landlord with April 2019 rent has been addressed. After not getting any response from the landlord other than the expectancy of rent being paid on time, I then decided to turn to legal counsel. This brought attention but no solid resolution. I was then advised to contact Community Advocates. I had heard of them before and their success with assisting renters in need of consultation on rent matters, but I assumed that my income bracket and neighborhood wouldn’t qualify for their assistance.
On the advice of a friend I went to the Wisconsin Avenue location after being in the hotel and spoke with a rent abatement advocate named Jo-el, who informed me that income or neighborhood is not a deciding factor for advocacy from Community Advocates. I spoke with him in detail regarding the ongoing issues, followed his advice to contact the City Inspector, who then came to the Bay View residence and did a full inspection, which resulted in a battery of violations, which require permits, re-inspections, and code compliances per the City of Milwaukee and the State of Wisconsin to be met no later than November 21, 2019.
Soon after the city inspection, Jo-el completed a home inspection visit to complete my rent abatement application. As a result, a portion of the upcoming rent was abated. Repairs are to be completed by November 21, 2019, and if not, I can apply for the Rent Withholding program. If and when approved, the reduced rent would to be paid directly to the City (Department of Neighborhood Services) into an escrow account.
Thank you, Community Advocates, and Jo-el for exceeding my expectations with advocacy.