North Portland Apartment Owners Sued By 19 Tenants

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North Portland Apartment Owners Sued By 19 Tenants

The new owners of the North Portland Melrose Apartments have been renovating units since they purchased the complex in 2016, but have now been sued by a group of current and former tenants, according to reports.

The tenants’ sued alleging unsafe living conditions.

“Current residents describe living in substandard conditions surrounded by persistent mold, cockroaches and numerous other violations of local and state rental housing laws,”  Pamela Phan, an organizer with the Community Alliance of Tenants, which has been organizing in the complex for three years, told news.

The community alliance of tenants wrote a letter in October of last year to the Melrose saying, “It is within our rights, as outlined in the Oregon Landlord Tenant Law, for our housing to have a base level of safety. For the past year, our units have not complied with the law or with our rental agreement. Given the numerous communications regarding these outstanding repairs, we understand that you have had ample time to make such repairs.” The group also alleges retaliation by owners.

Reports say that prior to the purchase by the new owners, the previous owners had allowed the property built in the 1970s to fall into disrepair.

Owners who were sued say they are continuing to make improvements

Dan Lavey, a spokesperson for the group of owners who purchased the property in late 2016, denies any allegations of retaliation and told news that, “While nearly half of the residences were renovated in just a few months, further work remains to ensure that every residence is improved to meet the expectations shared by our residents, owners and city officials.

“To expedite the renovation process, in November, the difficult decision was made to give residents living in un-renovated units official notice that they will need to seek different housing arrangements,” Lavey said in a statement.

Lavey says 30 tenants have been paid an average of $4,000 in relocation assistance to date. He says owners offered an additional $200 for moving costs and streamlined the process for tenants who wanted to move into a different unit within the complex.

“We’re certain that the renovations that have been completed combined with the expedited improvements yet to come, will make The Melrose a better, safer and healthier community for everyone,” said Lavey.

Last year, Portland landlords, who lost the first round in a lawsuit against the Portland tenant relocation ordinance back in July, have file an appeal to the judge’s ruling. It is still pending. Read more here Landlread mords Appeal Ruling In Tenant Relocation Lawsuit


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