Henrico woman upset with management’s response after apartment floods with fecal wastewater

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. -- A Henrico woman lost her home and belongings after she said her apartment flooded with wastewater Saturday.

“My hands and my feet were in fecal wastewater,” Alyse Rooks explained.

Rooks said a drainage issue at her Oakland Chase apartment contaminated the unit and her possessions as well as one other unit.

“When the plumber shows up they unclog the drain and more water surges into my apartment and what I now know is sewage wastewater,” Rooks said, “My apartment was already backed up from the sewage and then the storm came and flowed in afterward.”

Rooks said her insurance company deemed the unit a total loss and she was now living out of a hotel room.

“Everything I have worked for, everything that have been gifted and mementos from my family have all been contaminated with wastewater,” she said.

"I had to make emergency calls yesterday [Tuesday] to even get a response from the management,” Rooks explained.  “No one is sympathetic no one is empathetic no one gives me a timeline."

“My management office gave me three options.  I could be relocated or I can break my lease,” Rooks continued. "My relocation options were Mechanicsville. My other option was to pay an additional $200 to live in the apartments that are right here next door."

Rooks said she could not afford to pay for what she considered a preventable oversight.

“I think this was negligence,” said Rooks.  “There’s no way a drain gets clogged that bad without anyone knowing to destroy two whole apartments.”

The CBS 6 Problem Solvers reached out to the complex and its management company United Property Associates. As of this publication, no response has been received. Rooks did provide the CBS 6 Problem Solvers with an email response she received from UPA Wednesday evening:

Good Afternoon Ms. Rooks:

Unfortunately, unforeseen circumstances do arise in apartment communities that are not of our control. The Owner for The Villas of Midview is not responsible for loss rent relating to an occurrence at different property with different Owners. United Property Associates is the management company and not the Owner of either property. 

Additionally, UPA has to be consistent with its policies and procedures and follow the laws governed by the Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act.

If you would like to transfer to the Villas of Midview, you will be responsible to pay the current amount the units are leasing for at the Villas at Midview.

Oakland Chase would be responsible for the following:

  1. UPA will transfer you to Midview at the current rental amount for a 2 bedroom at Midview. (prices do vary based on different specifications of each apartment) 
  2. UPA will pay your moving costs to the new unit from Oakland (UPA will choose the moving company)
  3. UPA will pay your $600 security deposit in the new unit at Midview
  4. You may be eligible for the 5% preferred employee discount that is currently being advertised
  5. Your rent paid for the month of Sept. 2018 at Oakland will be transferred to the new unit at Midview, minus the number of days you still had possession the apartment at Oakland Chase.     
  6. You will receive your security deposit back from Oakland less any damages, if applicable.

Please let me know if you would like to terminate your lease or if you would like to transfer to the Villas at Midview.

Thank you,

________________________

Dana Jenkins, RAM

Director - Rental Division

United Property Associates

Rooks is currently living out of a hotel which is being covered by her insurance company.

CBS 6 News is working for you. Click here to email a tip to the CBS 6 Problem Solvers. Be sure to leave us your name, phone number and detailed description of the problem. You can also leave a message by calling 804-254-3672.

Need help? Contact the CBS 6 Problem Solvers.

Need help? Contact the CBS 6 Problem Solvers.