CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A south Charlotte woman said she's been forced to live in her one-bedroom apartment with mold, leaky pipes and booming, industrial-sized de-humidifiers despite repeated attempts to resolve the issues with the management team.
Amanda Gaston lives at Anson at the Lakes off of South Boulevard.
She said she discovered a problem with her pipes leaking from the HVAC unit on Saturday, June 18, with puddles covering the bathroom and closet floors.
The next day, she discovered mold growing on the baseboards.
Gaston has a mold allergy.
She submitted a written maintenance request to the apartment complex but didn't receive any reply until she followed up again on Tuesday.
"I'm allergic -- I'm losing my voice, I was getting a rash," Gaston said. "When the maintenance guy opened up the HVAC unit, he just immediately started coughing like crazy. I started coughing like crazy and I'm sitting probably 15 feet from where the HVAC unit was so clearly there's mold."
Gaston said the worker then put a hole in the closet wall to access the leaky pipe.
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The apartment complex then contracted Servpro to clean and restore the unit.
Servpro technicians came out Tuesday night but didn't have the proper equipment to remove the mold, so they put up sheets of plastic over the doorway to create a containment zone.
"The containment area is basically my bedroom, a bathroom -- and I live in a one bedroom one bathroom apartment," Gaston said.
Servpro also left two industrial-sized dehumidifiers: one in the bedroom and one in the bathroom.
"It is a lot more than just background noise," Gaston said. "It is very, very loud. It's like being in a warehouse or some kind of industrial plant... I can't use the shower because there's a large piece of machinery in there, and I'm afraid it might get electrocuted."
Gaston said she works from home and has a cat who is terrified of the machines.
"I can't have phone calls for work because of the noise," Gaston said.
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WCNC Charlotte reached out to the company, which provided the following statement via email on Friday, June 24.
"We have been working with the resident to remediate the issue and we expect the matter will be resolved soon," a spokesperson for Bell Partners said.
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"You get to go home at the end of the day to your nice, cooled house or apartment and we have to stay in this," Gaston said. "That's not fair."
After Gaston and WCNC Charlotte reached out to the company, Gaston received an email on Sunday, June 26, stating the company will reimburse her for hotel stays.
The company said it's also going to grant Gaston's request to terminate the lease without penalties. She'll also be credited rent for any days she did not live in her apartment.
"The situation has been resolved to the satisfaction of both parties. The unit has been remediated, and Bell Partners and the resident mutually agreed to a release from the lease," a spokesperson for Bell Partners said via email on Monday, June 27.
WCNC Charlotte reached out to Gaston after receiving that statement. She says she received the offer verbally but has yet to see the resolution in writing.