Saturday, July 26, 2008

Equity Residential engaged in unfair and misleading practices

Equity Residential (NYSE: EQR), one of the largest publicly traded owners and operators of residential housing in the US has been alleged in fraudulent practices and overbilling its customers.

I personally have been a resident at one of the Equity Residential Properties apartment complexes in California for over two years. Over the course of my residency at Equity Residential I have encountered numerous problems which were caused by negligent accounting practices and incompetency of the property management at my complex.

My first problems started when I, at the end of my initial lease term, requested a transfer into a larger apartment. I was told that in order to move into a new apartment within the same complex that was controlled by the same management, I had to put in a new deposit. When I asked the management at Equity why they simply could not roll over the deposit from the old apartment to the new one, they didn’t give me a legitimate explanation, but said that it was how they decided to do it.

After I put in the deposit on the new apartment and moved I expected a check from Equity Residential as their apartment management had assured me that a check would be arriving shortly in the mail.

The check never arrived. A month later I went to the property management office to inquire about my security deposit. A leasing specialist at Equity Residential pulled out my record and informed me that a bill would be arriving in the mail shortly and that after they have cleaned out my $800 security deposit in some bogus charges, I still owed them some amount, which was around fifty dollars if I remember correctly. I asked what the charges were for, to which Equity Residential leasing consultant said that the charges were for carpet cleaning and that it was usual business for Equity Residential to deduct money from its residents’ security deposit to pay for carpet cleaning. A leasing consultant giggled and said I got lucky that my carpet was still brand new and that because of that Equity Residential decided not to replace carpet at in my old apartment at this time.

She said I would have been charged additional amount for replacing carpet in my whole apartment and would have owed Equity Residential even higher balance.

When I inquired about the carpet cleaning bill, the leasing consultant presented me with a bill from the carpet cleaning company. The charges were around $300 and when I asked about the remaining balance of my security deposit after the carpet cleaning charges, she seemed astounded. She said that my deposit had been rolled over to the apartment I was currently occupying. She contended that because the security deposit on the old apartment was for some reason higher by $300 than the deposit on the apartment I was currently renting ($800 – on the old apartment v. $500 on the new apartment), after deducting carpet cleaning charges from my security deposit, I still owed Equity Residential Properties some money.

I pointed out that I had in fact put down a second security deposit, but the leasing consultant contended there was no record of me putting down a brand new deposit on the new apartment lease.

Needless to say, I was trying to involve my attorneys, and after showing Equity Residential management receipts from cashier’s check for the new security deposit, they finally agreed to send me some money, which it took Equity Residential another month or two to come up with a check.

Luckily for me, I have not had much interaction with Equity Residential until now when my lease came to its expiration again.

A month before the expiration date of my lease, Equity Residential notified me that my new lease would be increased by $141 ($1,260 v. $1,119). I went to the property management office to see if I could move to another apartment of the same size at a lower rate. The management staff said they did not have anything available cheaper than that until I showed them Craigslist advertisement for the same apartment complex where Equity Residential claimed the rent for the same size and type of apartment nearly two hundred dollars cheaper.

A leasing consultant pulled out the rate sheet and found several vacant apartments and apartments about to become vacant that were priced cheaper than my renewal rate. She said that vacant apartments were priced lower than renewal rate in order to get new residents in. But knowing that I would not be getting my $500 deposit back and may even end up with Equity Residential coming after me for more money in bogus charges (as a quick research of court records showed Equity Residential highly litigious practices with respect to its renters), I decided to save myself a headache and renewed my lease at $1260/mo.

Immediately after signing a new lease agreement, I asked Equity Residential accounting department to calculate my rent for the month of July 2008. I asked to calculate the prorated rent at $1,119/mo for the first eight days, add up the prorated rent for the remainder of the month at the new rate, and add the water and garbage bill that Equity Residential includes into the monthly rent. The amount of calculations came up to a figure that was for rent alone higher than my new rent and together with the water and garbage was around fourteen hundred. When I first looked at the itemized calculations, I could not understand why my rent alone, which was supposed to be lower than the new rent, was listed higher than my monthly rent at the new rate. Additionally, the utilities bill was nearly $65 for water and garbage, which was twice as high as it had been historically.

When I pointed out to the Equity Residential accounting that even a child could see the discrepancy, they agreed to recalculate the amounts, which came to a more legitimate figure. I wrote a check to Equity Residential which included both my monthly rent and utilities, and left immediately after Equity Residential leasing consultant accepted the check. Here is what the calculations came to:

$1,119/mo/31 daysX8=$288.77

$1,260/mo/31 daysX23=$934.84

Total Rent for July 2008 $1,223.61

Water and garbage bill $65.49

Total Rent and Utilities 1,289.10

A staff member at Equity Residential wrote a note with the calculations which I kept.
Approximately two weeks after Equity Residential accepted my check, I received a three-day notice to pay or vacate that Equity Residential staff pinned on my door. I was away for vacation, and the humiliating note stayed on my door until I got back in town.

Having had enough of problems with Equity Residential, I sought advice from several attorneys, who have suggested that I keep proper records of the happenings.

As my August rent payment came closer, I received another threatening note from Equity Residential suggesting that I owe them for the water and garbage for the month of July along with the rent and utilities for August, and that no partial payment will be accepted.

I was in the hopes that once Equity Residential reviews its records for their accounting errors, they would get off my back. That didn’t happen.

Today, making my way out of my apartment building I saw a note pinned on the hallway billboard where residents post lost cat and moving sale notes. The note said, “Stop! Have you looked at your utilities bill?” Basically, another resident of Whispering Oaks, which is my apartment complex owned by Equity Residential suggested that we (renters at Whispering Oaks) have been charged for boiler fees, and other fees in addition to water and garbage that Equity Residential have been regularly passing onto its residents without our expressed consent and our permission, and which was not a part of our lease agreement.

Looks like further investigation into Equity Residential’ and Whispering Oaks’ unfair accounting practices is much needed. I will update this blog as investigation moves along. Don’t forget to subscribe to my fee reader to get the updates of this investigation.

101 comments:

  1. I hate Equity Residential. I live in one of their apartments, and several similar things have happened to me. They throw that 3-day pay or quit notice without a thought. Current residents always get renew rates which are way higher than their advertised rates, frequently exceeding 10%. It's clear to me they prey on the idea that it is painful to move, that they have you in a box, and would like to take full advantage. Not exactly a respectable way to make money.

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    Replies
    1. does anyone have a class action law suit started? I am ready to join one, I have suffered all of the same things rom Equity Residential? K

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    2. I would join, too. Equity residential is nothing but a pack of unethical fraudsters. With no shame, no honor and no common sense. I lived in an equity residential townhome for more than five and a half years, never been late in my rent payments, always paid in full. they consistently tried to take advantage of you, first with a renters insurance that I had already provided proof that I carried sufficient insurance, and yet, they signed me up for one of their insurance. When I moved out,nthey charged me for replacement of the carpet -- for a carpet that was older than 7 !!! years. They also charged me for paint, though they never painted the house while I was there. And to add another icing on the cake, they charged trash, sewage and water double in the last months. I had sent them three letters by certified mail, aksing for an explanation of why the double charge in the last month and I never got a reply. Instead they simply referred my withheld payment for the double charges to a collection office. ompanies like Equity residential need to be taught a lesson. The only language they understand is economics. As long as there are consumer that move into places like that and let them get away with their fraudulent practices, they will continue.

      It is time for a change. And I can only advise anyone reading about Equity Residential to simply NOT move into their property. They are crooks of the worst kind.

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    3. I'm in this place is out of control the abuse needs to stop..

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  2. Equity Residential: San Diego are a bunch of crooked scum. They definitely prey on the idea that it is painful to move, I have been hit with 2 10% + rent increases in 3 years I have lived here. They raise the rent above their advertise rates, and just enough to make it not cost effective to up and move.

    I am finally done with these crooks at the end of this month. (hopefully) I got hit with a 23% rent increase with their month to month option which was disclosed to me less than 60 days prior to the end of my lease. They are forcing me to pay it because I did not put in my 30 day notice,30 days before the end of my lease. I thought the end of my lease was just that! Apparently not. They hold tenants hostage by threatening to mess up their credit. It just a big rip off and I hope some day someone rises against these big corporations that think they can just bully people around by threatening their reputation. Someone Please file a class action against this company and put an end to their bad faith practices.

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  3. Don't worry there is another Residential complex doing the same thing which is under a class action lawsuit "Olen Properties" which has many apartments under it name.
    (Palm Beach Counties)

    Whalers Cove
    Quantum Lake Villas
    Sanctuary Cove
    Manatee Bay
    Delray Bay
    Villas Of Juno

    (Broward Counties)

    Club Mira Lago
    Players Club
    Club Lake Pointe
    Weston place

    I worked for this company for 5 years and know first hand of there collection practices. They spend 24/7 suing /or being sued by someone at the orders of the owner I WANT A MINIUM OF 15 LAWSUITS FILED PER MONTH NO EXCEPTIONS!

    BE AWARE READ THE LEASE AGREEMENT THOUGHLY BEFORE SIGNING. PLUS BE AWARE OF THE EARLY CONCESSION $ THEY GIVE TO YOU FOR SIGHING A 13 MONTH LEASE! YOU HAVE TO PAY IT BACK IN FULL EVEN IF YOU ARE SHORT FULL FILLING YOUR LEASE TERM BY 1 DAY!

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  4. Equity Residential is operated and publicly traded by Nazi-style cunts. Wal-Mart treats it's consumers with more dignity and respect. Such a comparison speaks volumes about Equity's illegal and unethical practices.

    Make no mistake, given the outcome of recent elections, change is on the way. Mark my words, these scuzzy dirt-bags will go down in a ball of flames. What goes around, comes around. I can't wait until Equity executives are so bad off, their thieving asses will be on their knees, begging for a section-8 roof over their heads. God-Damned shit eatin' motherfuckers!

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  5. How does one prompt an investigation into another equity property located in Campbell CA for the same issue?

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  6. To adress your question RE: investigation, my first stop would be Fair Housing. I think they have a department that deals with tenant-landlord issues. They can also direct you to the proper authorities. Also, try contacting local television stations. They have departments that deal with consumer and tenant issues and bring awarness to the community.

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  7. I am trying to network with others that have fallen victim to unfair business practices by equity residential for a class action lawsuit. If you have been forced to pay an unreasonably high month to month rent increase and were not given 60 days notice, please email me at equityresidentialclassaction@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes,recently I often check my credit report and saw $868.00 amount send to collection agency from the property MGMT used to live for the last 3years and moved out last December.never receive any letter or bill from those guys but collection.
      tadwol2me@yahoo.com

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    2. Even worse, the property manager at Skyline Terrace, ca. Forged my neighbor's signiture on the doc you sign when you move in stating the defects. My friend is a contract attorney and a Notary public!!! How stupid is my manager, plus she was having an affair with the head maintence guy who is married w/kids!
      my friend had to leave after a $400 increase (remodeled unit prices)was given. All my neighbors are gone, units remolded, asbestos abatement? Equity has never heard of it apparently

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  8. This is happening to me and my roommate right now at an Equity complex in Virginia. We have been hit with our second $83 rent increase, and a surprise $200.00 security deposit that we have no clue is for. Also, our water bill has skyrocketed from $40 to $145, blamed on a faulty toilet! Please help...

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  9. Buzznut and NOVA423 - we're about to file a suit against Equity here in Arlington VA area.

    They have tried to extort several different amounts from us due to the 60 day notice requirement. Is your email address receiving any other inquiries or cases?

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  10. Hi! Am I glad I found this sight!

    Equity has done so many things to me. But the latest is when they entered the wrong storage unit in their computer, and year later, after I had been paying for the storage unit, they threw it all out. They went against Wa State law regarding abandoned property. they said they wanted to rnet the unit to another resident, but didn't know whose things were in there. So, the tossed them!! They admit fault, and say they are very sorry, but the insurance company is giving me a hard time getting the money. I have an attorney who specializes in commercial property wo wants to take the case, but he also wants a 40% contingency fee, which I have been trying to avoid. Looks like I should just move forward with it. I would LOVE to be part of this class action lawsuit as well.

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  11. Yes, Anonymous, I am gathering information on people California at this time to present a case.

    Please email me at Equityresidentialclassaction@gmail.com with your contact information:
    name, email, and property you rented from.

    I am specifically looking for people that had a fallen victim to Equity Residential's failure to provide the required 30 to 60 day notice (they usually provide 45, when they are required to provide 60). This occurs when they attempt to strong arm you into another lease term by threatening an unreasonably high month to month rate. They break the law with this month to month rate because they are required to give 60 days notice for rent increases in excess of 20% in CA. They also fail to properly serve these notices. When confronted, the property manager will tell you that it actually isn't a rent increase because the option to renew the lease is usually less than the 20%.

    This is where they try to bend the law:

    What if you are unable to sign on to another year lease?

    What are you left with?

    A 20% + rent increase; plain and simple!

    This is totally unethical and illegal. Anyone who was forced to pay this "month to month" rate in CA and it was more than an 20% increase should be entitled to their money back plus a punitive damage award if the management did not give them the sufficient 60 days notice, and properly served the notice.

    I am sure that a Jury of 12 peers will also see it the same way. Dont you? I know I would if I was on that Jury!

    Equity residential needs to be punished for these unfair, predatory, unethical business practices that are strangling people that are already enduring a multitude of financial difficulties in the current economic slowdown.

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  12. Hello,

    I recently was notified that I my lease was terminated because of a noise complaint and moved out when my lease was up.

    I then received a call (today) from Equity telling me that a bill was going to be sent in the mail for carpets, ect.

    When I moved into the unit, the carpet was already used. A friend told me that according to state law, carpet has to be replaced every two years.

    I am extremely nervous for the bill and I dont know what to do. We paid Equity a 250 re decorating fee, a 500 security deposit, and a 300 pet fee at move-in. I am not asking for any of those deposits back but I am questioning how they could bill us.

    Please help me with any information.
    Tony
    airforcetony@aol.com

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  13. Honestly they keep sticking my with fees and other such bullshiot because they don't have their shit in order

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  14. To the VA equity renter. My husband and I made the mistake of renting from The Prime, and equity apt in Arlington. We noticed their utility costs are are 3x as high as when we were in another building in Arlington. Do any VA equity renters know if there is any action against this company? I think we are all being forced to pay other costs we aren't responsible for.

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  15. I use to work for equity and I do feel the pain people are going through and went through, I myself is going throug fair employment and housing to get these people on track. I am with you all. They charged me extra fees when they threw me out after my employment ended. They are very cruel and unfair. I want to see them go down.

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  16. Anonymous that posted the above...are you in CA? If so I would like to hear your story

    Equity residential needs to be punished for these unfair, predatory, unethical business practices that are strangling people!!!!

    If you are in CALIFORNIA and were charged a "month to month" rate or were evicted prior to the end of your lease and charged a "month to month" increased rate, and/or were improperly served a notice, I would like to know about it.

    Please email me at

    Equityresidentialclassaction@gmail.com with your contact information:
    name, email, and property you rented from

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  17. Has anyone had this happen? Every so many months EquityResidential ER. Posts a pay or vacate notice on my door, claiming they did not receive payment. However, my bank automatically pays my rent through their bill pay system. The first couple of times I just paid the fees, because I didn't have the time to investigate. My bank has offered to pay the late fee. However it keeps happening. When I talked to my bank this last time they suggested I personally hand ER my rent check and obtain a receipt. Consequently, the check always seems to arrive the day after I paid the late fees and the rent. My bank supports me and believes this may be a scam to collect add'l money from tenants. In the end it was their word against mine--so I paid. This is the first time I have ever had problems with a company claiming I did not pay my bills. I do not want my credit ruined, because as you all know this is what they threaten. But I'm frustrated and prepared to fight. If I had known there were so many complaints out there I would have commented long ago. If anyone has had this experience would you please respond. Thank you and good luck to you.

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  18. I think Equity Residentil is breaking the law big time. I had to file complaint based on discrimination. They also failed to make necessary repairs and maintenance. They do everything possible to get an extra buck for you.
    I think this is time they pay us back, and we need to file as many complaints as possible including the class action lawsuit. They will be investigated, and hopefully, we'll be awarded the compensation.
    If you'd like to discuss this, you can e-mail me at otabi76@yahoo.com

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  19. Are there any guidelines for coming up with month to month rent figure after your lease expires? I gave notice to move out one month before lease expires, and said that would be living there for two additional weeks after the lease ended. They increased the month to month rate by $275!! (I pay $1620 on 1 year lease, and the same apt currently is being rented for $1350 to $1450. I expect month to month to be higher, but why is it so HIGH? Let me know what you all think. I can be reached at aomathur@yahoo.com.

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  20. I have bad credit because of the false accusations made by equity residential from 5 years ago!

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  21. Buyer Beware!
    After I moved out of Equity Residential Deerfield Beach,FL. They want me to want me to pay for electricity they consumed to keep the apartment air conditioned. I will be filing a formal complaint with BBB and other housing agency that will investigate their predatory business practice

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  22. I'm going through my own personal hell with these Nazis. I am moving on Labor Day weekend but they want to do a "pre-inspection" for the move. i've never heard of that in my life! What kind of condition do they expect to find a soon to be moved apartment? In this bogus letter includes a list of outlandish fees for items that may need to be replaced to turn the partment over. I once worked in leasing and never once did we ask for fees like this. It was just part of the turnover. I'm wondering if I can refuse the pre-inspection. It's on a Sunday! Ridiculous! - In Alpharetta, GA

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  23. It's amazing how many similiar complaints there are about equity. Someone out there need to protect our rights. I moved out of one equity apartment and had to pay back $1700 for so-called damage to the apartment. I couldnt afford to pay back that money and thy gave me over to a collection agency. Then, I moved into another Equity Apartment, stayed for 4 months and then was charged another $1172. I had to relocate, gave them 30 days notice and had to pay $455. That's ridiculous. My husband said I should seek legal advice. Initially I was told if I want to relocate coast to coast, you dont have to pay relocation cost. Guess what, I had to relocate after 4 months to northern california and I was asked to pay Equity $500. Okay,two days before moving out of my apartment I received a call from northern CA Equity apartments that I cannot move into the new apartment, because I still owe the previous apartments $1700, and I have to pay the $500 relocatiion cost. I was treated like a second class citizen. I was crying and felt humiliated. I could'nt break my lease, otherwise thy would expect me to pay them an additional $3500. I was lost, my family needed a place. So I maxed out my credit card to pay the $1700, $500 and &400 deposit at the new place. Someone should stop these unlawfull practices of equity. If you have any advice for me please email me at zeelkies@yahoo.com. thank you

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  24. We are scheduled to move into a equity residential apartment this week. I have found the staff unfriendly and high pressure since we agreed to move into the apartment. I felt the $400 upcharge on the security deposit was unfair. This site confirms my doubts regarding the complex and its unfair practices. I am filing a grievance with the fair housing authorities on Monday. Thanks for sharing.

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  25. If you were a victim of discrimination from Equity Residential, please, e-mail me at otabi76@yahoo.com. I have filed a grievance with the housing department for discrimination on a familial basis and Equity Residential is under the investigation now. They had to hire an attorney to respond.
    Please, e-mail me, and more complaints we'll file - the better.

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    Replies
    1. Which state are you in. As we have moved out of an apartment in Massachusetts and we have been slammed with a huge move out fee on top of our security deposit.

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  26. Equity Residential is very discriminatory against certain individuals if not an entire group of people. I will like to advise people to check out Apartmentratings.com and look at the number of complaints from tenants just like we are.

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  27. I live in an Equity property in NY and have been fighting with them for the past year ever since my utlilty bills have been rising by over 200%. Seems that this property is sub-metering our gas...however we have no legal recourse as they have found a loophole that allows it. Additionally, we have been subject to unfair fees...some neighbors pay one fee, some pay others, some pay none. This has been more the case since we had new management come in last year. I feel very helpless and am completely drained fiancially. Feel free to contact: mathomps1@hotmail.com to discuss.

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  28. I live in one of their NY properties and have had the foul smell of urine in it since i moved in 3 weeks ago. I have tried to get them to deal with it on a daily basis but they have delayed week after week. The smell is so foul it is giving my wife and i a headache and we never want to come home. does anyone know what we can do about this? mattjchua@yahoo.com

    thanks,

    m

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  29. I just moved out of Equity residential apt in GA , the lease was up on NOV 1st.I officially signed the papers on Sept 15 that I would not be renewing .I just got a phone call(Nov 5th ) saying I was supposed to let them know 60 days ahead of time. I only had a 6 month lease SO THEY KNEW I was leaving. I have NEVER heard of an apt complex needing more than 30 days notice.. I GAVE THEM 45.. they are now tacking on and ENTIRE half months rent for not signing the papers on Sept 1st( which no one told me about)even when I sat down to sign the papers on the 15th no one said anything about it.... i got the bill and on Nov 1st is when they added the fee.. Shouldn't they have told me about this on SEPT 1st or 2nd or HELL any time after Sept 1st.. This is ABSOLUTELY unethical

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  30. So glad I found this site! I am going through move out problems with the complex in Potomac Falls, VA right now. I never got a letter from them stating when I had to give notice, when I did, I was told there would be no fee. I have now moved out and am told they are keeping my entires security deposit and billing me an additional $100 for damages to carpet. I have yet to receive a break down of the charges, despite contacting the manager and asst manager several times. It was "mailed" however, I have gotten the threatening letter stating that if the balance isn't paid that it would go to collections, but not the break down of charges. Very unethical!

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    Replies
    1. How did you resolve the issue we have been slammed with a 500 $ bill and we are in Massachusetts

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  31. Hello all,

    Any one has any issues from the TarryTown, NY location?

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  32. 6 MONTH LEASE:

    Section 83.57, F.S.
    Termination of tenancy without a specific term - days of written notice required (prior to termination):

    Weekly --------- 7 days
    Monthly -------- 15 days
    Quarterly ------- 30 days
    Yearly ---------- 60 days

    For the lady who was told you need to give 60 days notice for a 6 month lease...Equity Residential was wrong..Get your money back from them!



    http://www.800helpfla.com/landlord_text.html

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  33. EQUITY APARTMENTS IN NYC ARE THE WORST. THE BUILDINGS WERE TRUMP PLACE. WHEN MR.TRUMP SOLD THE APARTMENTS TO EQUITY IT WAS DOWN HILL FROM THERE. AFTER 1 AM IF YOU GET LOCKED OUT OF YOUR APARTMENT YOU ARE CHARGED 50.00 BECAUSE THERE IS NO SECURITY BETWEEN 1AM-7AM.WITH THE RENT THAT IS BEING PAID IT IS HORRIBLE NO SECURITY IN THE EVENING. ALSO THEY RATER FIX THE APARTMENTS THAT ARE VACANT THAN THE PEOPLE HOW HAVE BEEN LIVING THERE FOR YEARS. THE MANAGEMENT DEPARTMENT " MR.IKRIM HAS NO PEOPLE SKILLS. HE IS VERY NASTY. IF YOU ARE ONE DAY LATE HE IS ALREADY CALLING YOU.THEY DONT CARE ABOUT THE PEOPLE. THEY ONLY CARE ABOUT THERE MONEY.

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  34. Our Equity Residential encounter was frustrating beyond belief. Our utility bills were outrageously high, and we had no say in how much we paid. For a 600 sq ft one bedroom (where we rarely used heat, and are really conservative on water) we were paying between 125-150 a month for utilities. That doesn't include electricity, which was another 25-30 a month.

    We were told upon signing that our appliances would most likely be updated. Not only were they not updated, but they continued to break. We're talking doors falling off, microwave not closing all the way, refrigerator shelves breaking. I asked several times for them just to be replaced and each time I came home with a note saying that it had been fixed with spare parts. Upon moving out, we said that they really need to replace them for the new tenants, to which they replied "Oh! I wish you would have told us and we would have replaced them for you."

    Our carpets were new when we moved in, and we specifically asked if we needed to have the carpets cleaned. Their response was, "Our cleaners do a very good job, and they only charge $25. You'll be fine." We are very clean people, vacuumed regularly, and the carpet only had normal wear and tear. The only signs at all were a small pink spot in the bedroom, and small dirt spots that only needed some suds to get out. When we got our move out sheet, we were charged $550 to replace the carpet.

    Their book keeping skills really are sub-par. We paid on January 1st for our January rent, and December utilities. On our move out sheet, they, again, charged us for Decembers utilities and deducted it from our deposit. We also received a separate statement for December and Januarys utilities combined saying that we owe the utility company directly. The topper is that the bill says that we, the renter, owe 2.47 per day, for 44 days. The total on our bill is almost $20 more than what that computes out to.

    Unfortunately, as renters, we have very few legal rights. Its all heresay. I no longer have access to past service requests to show how many times we had to have things fixed, NOR do I have access to previous billing statements since our building REQUIRES us to do all billing online. Once you're no longer a renter, you lose access.

    If anyone has any advice, please help!

    Kimbrebean@gmail.com

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  35. Chalk up one more unethical action by Equity. My daughter went in 2 months in advance to say that she was not going to renew her lease. At the time, they required her to sign a form, which unfortunately, she just signed. They gave her a form to RENEW her lease for signing. When she pointed out later that she had submitted in writing the statement that she was moving out, and said that the office employee told her she was signing a form stating intent to move out, NOT to renew, they said, "Oh, well. Too bad." She is now on the hook for the full lease until such a time as the apartment is rented. They told her they had found a renter as of 6 days into the first month she moved out. She got a call today, in which they told her the renter had supposedly changed his mind and wanted a different apartment, so she would have to pay rent until they manage to find someone to move in to her old apartment.

    Since she took on a much more expensive apartment, this is going to break her. Not to mention, they secured her signature under false pretenses. The employee even agreed that yes, she told her something false. But they say, "Too bad. It's legal. You signed it."

    My daughter has learned a lesson the very hard way, to never sign anything you haven't read completely. Unfortunately, I don't know how she's going to pay for this. It's unconscionable.

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  36. Equity is charging us a late fee for a utility bill. Our rent is paid in full. We have challenged the bill which has skyrocketed from 35 to 95 in a matter of two months. I am willing to join class action lawsuits against equity. Where do we apply?

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  37. I have been an Equity Tenant in the NorthEast and Equity has charged many people in our building late fees that they never adjusted, for rent that was not late, and as someone above said, would not adjust rates closer to market rent for tenants when the rental market took a plunge, boxing them in, so they would move, while offering outside renters market rent that they call 'preferential rent'. They get tax abatements for some of these buildings while wreaking havoc on tenant's lives and forcing them out of their Equity "Apartment Homes.' They thought at least in one building that tenants would not move due to the inconvenience, and even raised rents further, but in some buildings they had a bout a 85 to 90% turnover, so eventually they appeared to realize that it was a stupid move for their shareholders to lose so much rent and offered tenants lowered rents, about 200 hundred dollars above the new tenants. Had they done that earlier, their buildings would have performed much better financially for their shareholders, and they also wouldn't have harmed the tenants that had made their financial engine operate well for numbers of years.
    They appear to have some very bad regional management who don't know how to manage well at all, and only care about financial figures. The times shareholders/investors came to our building, management have gone into a frenzy to hide some of the structural problems, etc. so the shareholders could not see these. More importantly it appears they engage in illegal activity and as a public company, have not been accountable. There are a lot of problems, and eventually when found out, will hopefully be penalized, as they seem to grease a lot of palms,
    and also have theirs greased.

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  38. http://www.allbusiness.com/legal/trial-procedure-suits-claims/5601803-1.html

    This link shows Equity Residential announcing what they called for purposes of reporting to the shareholders, 'a partial victory,' for not having to fully have to pay the amount sought in a class action suit from tenants in Florida, regarding improperly charged fees. A decision in the case, appears to have been rendered in 2004. In other words, Equity did not want to say, they had their asses whopped, having to pay the tenants back $1.629 million of the money they had stolen from them, and all the legal fees to fight the suit.
    The State of Florida was not harsh enough. It seemingly has been a nationwide practice of Equity for years to charge improperly assessed fees, legal action towards clients, harassment, failure to remove the fees when shown they are not substantiated, and other situations that sparked that and other actions. The management and board of Equity should certainly as a public company, be investigated and prohibited from these practices. The system seems not to work, and corporate crooks are allowed to linger and prey on people for 'shareholder results.' Either they should be hit in their pocketbooks harder, or perhaps some jail time would be in order for the management and the board. These are times that corporate entities should be stopped from illegal activities and for people to lobby for that. This company knowingly steals and tries to see if they can get away with it until challenged. This is not the type of company the U.S. should reward with special tax and other incentives. If they themselves or their families were subjected to the effects of the practices that they engage in, they would be the first ones to cry about it.

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  39. Equity sought to obtain money back lost due to what appears unethical practices, from their insurance company!! Read message for the benefit of their shareholders below, and the suit brought by their tenants in Florida.

    Equity Residential Responds to Ruling in Florida Class Action Suit.
    Publication: Business Wire
    Date: Tuesday, December 7 2004

    CHICAGO -- Equity Residential (NYSE:EQR) today issued a statement addressing its partial victory in the Palm Beach County class action case of Yates, et. al. v. Equity Residential. The lawsuit, filed in late 2002 and tried in August 2004, challenged the enforceability of certain charges
    that Equity assessed residents who terminated their leases early or failed to give notice of their intent to vacate at the end of the lease term. The challenged practices were discontinued over a year ago. On December 1, 2004, the Circuit Court issued a ruling that certain charges were unenforceable, ordered Equity to establish a class fund of $1.629 million (less than 20% of the amount requested at trial) and retained jurisdiction to consider an award of reasonable attorneys' fees. The Court also barred Equity from seeking to collect any such outstanding charges, which will not result in any earnings charge as Equity had not previously recorded these uncollected amounts as income.
    "While we are disappointed that the Court found that certain of our charges are unenforceable and will appeal that decision if necessary, we are pleased that the Court rejected substantial parts of the plaintiffs' case and ordered a class fund that is considerably less than the amount requested," said Bruce C. Strohm, Equity Residential's Executive Vice President and General Counsel. "The company has submitted insurance claims for coverage of any losses we may incur as a result of this lawsuit, including both our and the plaintiffs' attorneys' fees. Whether coverage ultimately will be provided is uncertain." An anticipated earnings charge of $1.629 million, which will be taken in the fourth quarter 2004, will not meaningfully impact the company's earnings guidance provided on November 2, 2004.
    Equity Residential is the largest publicly traded apartment company in America. Nationwide, Equity Residential owns or has investments in 947 properties in 33 states and the District of Columbia consisting of 201,917 units. For more information on Equity Residential, please visit our website at www.EquityResidential.com.

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  40. i live at new river cove in davie,fl, this company is disgusting the front office told me that the notice to terminate my lease was thirty days i said i thought it was sixty. they told me it changed so i went into the front office 45 days until the end of my lease to tell them i was moving and now they say i should of read my lease its sixty days not thirty and yes i was given the wrong information but to bad. the manger told me i should take responsibilty for my error because i should have verified that it was sixty even though they are the ones that told me that it was thirty and they agree they told me that but oh well they do not care they are pigs do not rent from this company they will screw in the end and i will not pay the extra 13 days they want from me by the way 2 murders have happened here and apartment breakins beware bad business

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  41. Just like any contract, you should not enter the contract unless you understand the contract. A rental agreement is a contract. I have lived in three Equity properties in Colorado and live in one currently. I recieved 100% of the refundable deposits when I moved out from two of the properties and currently live in the third. As for rent increases, when I prorated the non-refundable deposits over the year term, I found the actual rent increase to be negligable. The renewal notice for next year has a rent increase of $7/month compared with how much it really cost me to live here last year.

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  42. HAS ANYONE HAD BET ISSUES, I LIVE IN FLORIDA AND WHERE I STAY THE STAFF IS NICE BESIDES THE MAIN ONE IN CHARGE I BELIVE NAMED SHERIE. AS FAR AS AND QUOTE SHE SAYS " SHE CAN DECIDE WHO STAYS OR GOES OR IF SHE SUSPECTS OF A PET BEING MIXED SHE CAN DECIDE IF SHE WANTS THEM ON THE PROPERTY" WHY WOULD I PUT MYSELF IN THAT SITUATION. WHY WOULD I LIE I LIKE WHERE I LIVE. THE WHOLE POINT IS I FELT SO DISCRIMINATED BECAUSE THERE ARE NUMEROUS AGGRESIVE DOGS HERE AND YET I HAVE A PUPPY AND I AM WRONG. NOW AS FAR AS PET FEE'S SHE STATED IT WAS A $500 2 PET LIMT AND WAS CLEARIFIED AS NOT PER PET BUT AS A FLAT FEE. NOW SHE IS GOING BACK ON WHAT SHE SAID AND SHE IS STATING NO ONE EVER SAID THAT....
    LEEMEEDEE@HOTMAIL.COM PLEASE HELP I WANT OUT I FEELLIKE THEY ARE ENTERING MY APARTMENT AND I DONT FEEL SAFE

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  43. Wow, there are soooo many complaints against these guys!
    I had a really bad experience with them too. They charged me for a carpet I did not damage! The thing is, we went through the checklist the day we were moving out and everything was fine with no damages. We received no notice from them regarding the carpet charge and we only found out over a year later when we checked our credit report (we check twice a year).
    By then we were out of the country on military orders and couldn't settle this matter face to face.
    So we called. They said that it was their error and that the charge and the negative credit report entry was going to be taken care of. Well, another year later, we noticed they still haven't and by now we're sure they won't.
    I noticed on the BBB website my apartment complex, Windridge Apartments didn't have a report so that is my next stop.

    DO NOT RENT from these guys!! When I lived on their property, I had loads of problems that took a lot of MY effort and time to get them to fix.
    I've rented from about 4 properties before Windridge but never had problems with management.

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  44. I move into The Highlands May 20th.In Scottsdale, AZ. I'm scared now.

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  45. Equity residential is by far the worst place to rent. RENT AT YOUR OWN RISK. They will charge you for anything and everything and the quality of the apartments are terrible. I was at Country Brook in Chandler, AZ. Office staff was absolutely aweful to deal with as well.

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  46. Equity residential has failed in their services once again. In Atlanta, GA Paces Station has overbilled me for cleaning fees and holes in the walls etc. Due to a minor spot in the living room, they had to replace the entire carpet for the apartment. They have yet to tell me where the spot is located, because I left there were no stains. I will definetly advice that no one reside in this community or the property. Please dont use the carpet or the walls, because they will charge.

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  47. I hate Equity Residential. Same thing happened to me at an Equity Residential property in Arlington Virginia. I paid a few minutes before midnight while I was traveling in the pacific time zone, checked my email and got a confirmation before midnight. Their payment portal server in the central time zone decided I was late and I was charged an immediate 15% ($300) late fee. When I disputed the charge and offered evidence that I had paid on time, they accused me of altering the email, they stated there was no way they could reverse the charge and they threatened me with immediate eviction and legal action, even though non-payment of a late fee is not legal grounds for eviction. Unbelievably poor customer service. The whole "very satisfied" ad campaign is nothing more than corporate doublespeak bullshit. They are not interested in my satisfaction. They are a heartless bureaucracy run by children who love to wave their power around. Very unsatisfied.

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  48. with all these complaints, it's a wonder no one has started a 501(c) 3 political organization, solicited donations and hired a team of lobbyists to pressure Congress to pass a federal renters bill of rights to address these ethically questionable practices.

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  49. It should also be pointed out that Equity Residential has an "F" rating with the Better Business Bureau (http://www.bbb.org/chicago/business-reviews/real-estate-services/equity-residential-in-chicago-il-73000697). While the Bureau cautions against using their rating alone in evaluating a business, and recommends instead of using their rating in conjunction with all other information available, I think their rating confirms all the other information publicly available in this case.

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  50. I hate equity apartments, I have been cheated out of hundreds of dollars, along with paying several 100.00 over in deposit fees, I paid my rent and they took money out of my rent for additional deposit that I didn't owe, and then said I owed them more rent. Along with not fixing items, they have lied and said they have fixed things. I know that so many people are moving out because they can't stand it anymore, but because I am disabled, they are taking advantaqe of me. It has been two weeks since I have requested that the plugged up bathtub be fixed.

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  51. Equity residential folks are bunch of crooks who are involved in unethical business practice. I lived in one of their Beaverton OR location. Management doesn't stick with their words. Every time you go there, you hear different story. Once agent tell you something and other tells you something different. I left their property a month ago and paid lease termination fee and they sent me a whole new bill for Painting, Washing etc etc. They are nice to you while signing the lease, once trapped and lease is signed...they give you a flying f$5k. DON'T EVER DO BUSINESS WITH THEM. DON'T TRUST THEM. Its better to pay $50-$100 more and live else where.

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  52. Yep...what they said...they ABSOLUTELY will raise your rent when the lease is up with the idea that it's harder to move again. One year later = 13% increase.

    DO NOT RENT AT THESE PROPERTIES!

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  53. Wow, I wish I found this site a long time ago! I have been robbed by Equity. My first experience moving to Los Angeles and moving into a cool apartment. They had a banner that said if youre not happy with the apt/service you have 30 days to get out of your lease. Well that disappeared shortly after signing the lease. I came back in to discuss moving out of the lease because the management staff was horrible. Rude, short in conversation, talking down to their clients as a manner to keep everyone in chek or something. Anyhow, the manager lied to my face and said that we never had such a promotion. From that point it was hell dealing with them, I signed a year lease at 1400 a month. I gave them a 30 day notice and moved out a day later than I supposed to, which I figured that I would pay some of a pro-rated amount that I discussed with one of the leasing agents on the 9th, letting know that I need 1 extra day. Once that day came and went I got a bill from Equity for 1600.00 for the month to month rent and stated that since I moved out a day late I was responsible for the rent. I was 21 at the time with little renter experience. AND there is NO WAY I can afford 1600 for 1 day of rent!! I dont understand how people can work for a company that encourages this type of behavior, and after seeing all the complaints its clear that there is a common theme with all the equity properties. I rented from the Portofino Apts in Chino Hills, Ca... They even hit me with an eviction even though I was never evicted from the apartment. They sent me to collections, and slammed me with an eviction. I tried to reason with the collection people and they said simply either you pay the 1600 or let it destroy your credit and not rent again for 7 years. This whole thing has been pretty trying and all over 1600 when I was trying to resolve it at that time! But they have to gauge you, knowing youre only 21 with limited experience dealing with shady business practices.

    I am trying to rent an apartment and they said I have to resolve this matter not because of the debt but because of the eviction they have on my record, does anyone know what I should be able to do to get this eviction off my record, or can they do that?

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  54. I live in equity appartment and my lease is up for renewal and they are charge a 10% increase I live in Fl I think there should be a law against it they should not be allow to charge what they want it should be guide line in precent are allow to be to add to any ones rent.

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  55. Anyone in the State of Washington having problems with them also. I am moving out July 31, 2010 and I am getting an attorney to help out--just from reading this.
    When I first moved into Heronfield Aprts, they were owned by another company that was just great. These creeps came in and I knew I should have moved out, but spent two more years under their thumbs. I have been over charged because I was the only black women tenant and now they have decided not to renew my lease-that I am not sad about. I should have move when they came in--check out Apartmentratings.com in Washington--for other problems.

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  56. I work at Equity and I hate it!!!!!!!! I feel your pain folks!!!They charge because it's equity's policy that all residents that move out get charged!! They suck!!!!!!

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  57. One more note--they cannot even get a Better Business acreditation in the States of Alaska, Oregon or Washington because of their unfair/illegal business practices and numberous complaints and lawsuits against them.
    I really wish there was a way to spread the word about these people--

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  58. Having read all of these complaints and prior to my moving out, I notified, IN WRITING, all utilities-water/sewer/trash/electric/phone/cable, etc that I was moving out, gave them the date and that I would NOT BE responsible for ANY BILLS after that date. I also gave the apartment complex a copy of all letters. In addition, I took pictures of the apartment after I had cleaned it out and copied the photos and gave those copies to the complex, so that they could NOT come back and say that it was left dirty, etc. I had also taken pictures of the apartment BEFORE I moved in 4 years ago and gave them copies of those also. I guess this is the only way to protect yourself against properties like Equity. Best of Luck to all and if a lawsuit ever gets started in the State of Washington, I would love to join. I will keep coming back to check on this site.

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  59. After moving out from our Apartment at Villa Solana in Laguna Hills, CA. we got hit with a bill for $600.00 on top of our deposit for $600.00...I cannot believe the amount of people that we have come across with similar situations. This company has to be stopped! Below is my contact for Villa Solana and my emial to the manager.Lets stand together and fight these unfair billing practices please email me at farrellsales@hotmail.com

    TRainwater@eqr.com
    Dear Ms. Rainwater,

    We started doing some investigating on your company after recieving a bill for bosus charges. It turns out the more we researched the more we found that other people had been through the same thing....There is an unbelieveable amount of complaints against your company overcharging people after they move out.Below are just a few of the websites with the complaints and below that are just a few of the emails I have recieved in reponse upon my investigating these false charges from your company.





    http://www.ripoffreport.com/Search/equity-residential.aspx

    http://www.ripoffreport.com/Search/equity-apartments.aspx



    http://consumer-complaint-department.blogspot.com/2008/07/equity-residential-engaged-in-unfair.html

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  60. The Oaks in Canyon Country, CA I just got my move out charges. They charged me to have the rug replaced. The rug did not need to be replaced. I shampooed it before I left and knew they would reshampoo it. There was no wear on the rug. There was traffic pattern dirt but no wear. The also charged me 185 early termination fee. I paid the rent to the end of my lease why the early termination fee. Do not rent with Equity

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  61. I lived in pembroke pines, florida and i am going through the same things that most of you all are. I moved out and now i'm being charged for replacing carpet, which was not new when i moved in, and a water/trash bill that is too damn much. they refuse to explain anything to me and threatens me with attorneys. i am going to file a small claim against them and go to court.

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  62. I am currently being charged $280 for cleaning fees, is anyone else going through this???? There is nothing stated in the lease that they can do this, residents should not be responsible for cleaning and paint and carpet cleaning if normal wear and tear has occured.

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  63. Wow, I feel like I just got saved from the jaws of death after reading all these complaints. I had just toured a Security Residential property in Glendale AZ. And supposed to let them know tomorrow if I'll sign a lease or not. Guess what my answer will be? Thanks to you all for sharing your experiences. I could have never have known, the property itself looks nice, as was the staff. Guess my search is still on for a decent place to live :-/

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  64. I am currently moving out of a property in Corona, CA and I am challenging their 30 day satisfaction policy. I moved in on the 30th of September and will be moving out on the 30th of October. I have stated that I am not happy with the complex and plan to exercise what was advertised on their flyer. I have not been contacted by the property manager and always seem to miss him when I call. I am so disappointed with their policies and told them I plan to contact legal counsel if they do not honor their advertisements.

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  65. I live in Tanglewood apartments in Manassas, VA and I am constantly smelling marijuana coming from down stairs beneath me. The person that is smoking it seems to also be dealing it out of his house and he works at the leasing office. I believe he is a lease consultant. How often do you all drug test your employees because there are kids around and kids that are living with me that is smelling the same thing and seeing the same behavior.

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  66. Anyone who is interested in filing a class-action lawsuit against Equity Properties, please email me at: californiagal09@gmail.com.

    I went through and am still going through a lot with an Equity Residential Property in Westminster, CO. They charged for anything and everything they could when I moved out to pay for what they needed to pay for the "ready" the apartment for the next person. I lived there a number of years and wear and tear were not even considered. This is not a good company and I believe they are doing fraudulent things with people.

    Even if you live in a another state-doesn't matter when it comes to Equity Residential making false claims in order to fatten their wallets. If we all band together and find an attorney to take the case, we can all win.

    Thank you.

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  67. Can anyone tell me if these waterbill (for non-metered apartment units) calculations are legal in Florida? There are no itemized bills?

    Per Manager at Sawgrass Cove Apartments in Florida: Water is allocated on base square footage & number of occupants. The bills you receive from NWP, our billing vendor are calculated by dividing the community's bill for the utility by the total square footage of the apartments at the community, multiplying that amount by square footage of the premises, and pro-rating that amount based on the number of days you had possession of the premises during the billing period and also by dividing the community's bill for the utility by the total number of occupants at the community, and by multiplying that amount by the total number of occupants in your premises, and pro-rating that amount based on the total number of days you had possession of the premises during the billing period. each of these formulas are applied to a portion of the bill and then the results are added together. Your bills are broken down in four parts: water, sewer, trash, and billing fee. These break downs are shown on your bills and on your account ledger at www.my.equityapartments.com and this explanation is on your term sheet and utility addendum which can be accessed on the portal as well

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  68. I have also recently been scammed by Equity Residential in South Florida. They are claiming I owe them almost $200 above keeping my $350 deposit because there were 3 stains in the living room and they had to replace the carpet in that room.

    Aside from these bogus and unethical charges, I also have serious legal concerns about their deceptive billing practices. All bills appear on their website, and when it was the last month of my lease there were no less than 4 separate amounts all labeled as "January Rent" with no explanation as to how much as actually owed. Of course, the billing defaulted to the most expensive charge which was well over what my normal lease amount would be. Even though my lease expired on a specific day they used deceptive billing to try to get me to pay for the entire month at an inflated rate.

    I contacted them by phone, which took dialing no less than 3 different phone numbers since they do not pick up the main office line, and a receptionist explained how I was supposed to subtract some numbers from others to get what I really owed but no where on the bill were these numbers labeled. In fact, even after her explanation I still could not find the correct charges to get to the actual amount of rent plus utilities I owed and they finally just told me what my final rent amount should be, a number that appeared NO WHERE on my actual bill.

    I would not be surprised if a lot of other residents paid way more than they should have for their final month based on these deceptive billing practices.

    I also have to say that similar to other posters on this board, the reason I decided to move after 2 years was that they wanted to increase my rent $70 a month when they had no less than 7 vacant apartments of my exact floorplan and view (since they charge differently for various views)that according to their main website were listed for $20 a month under what I was paying. They also tried to explain that those rates were for "new residents" only and as an existing tenant I did not qualify, but there is also a thing called Fair Market Value, which is a concept they don't seem to understand.

    Good Luck to everyone here. I know they'll be sending collections to get their extortion money from me, but I can't pay them in good conscious.

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  69. TO RESIDENTS OF VANTAGE POINTE SAN DIEGO, and ALL tenants of Equity Residential: CHECK YOUR CREDIT REPORT FOR FRAUDULENT INSTALLMENT LOANS! Long story short, Equity Residential purchased the Vantage Pointe Condominiums in November 2010. Shortly after that I was alerted to a $20,000 Installment Loan that had miraculously appeared on my credit report. After a close review of the situation, it has come to my attention that during the acquisition of RentBureau (an Equity Residential subsidiary) by Experian, there have been countless accounts of false loans being reported on tenant credit reports. What does that mean??? Answer: An Installment Loan is the equivalent to buying a car, or applying for credit at a furniture store, etc... Installment loans affect your Debt/Income ratio. Google it for more info. My advice to everyone reading this blog is to take a look at your credit report. My girlfriend and I were both affected by this mistake, and have been dealing with the regional manager for over a month on this issue. Nobody can give us a straight answer, and I'm at a point where seeking litigation may be the only recourse. My gf did not qualify for a medical loan because of this and her credit score fell from the 800's because of the mistake. If you're dealing with this issue as well. Please let me know if you've received an explanation or compensation.

    Respectfully,

    Sandro@ShortSalePros.com

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  70. Who wants to get together for a class action lawsuit in VA? Anyone know a good lawyer?

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  71. I lived in one of the Equity Residential Buildings in NY (71 Broadway) for 3 years. Generally my experience with them was good but at the end they didn't return my full deposit. They put some fake charges and late fees (I always paid my rent on time) and when I tried to talk to them they didn't return phone calls or replied to my emails. I am filing a complaint with the Attorney General of NY State and with the Better Business Bureau.

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  72. Equity Residential is a company that does not care for the people who pay their bills and put food on their tables. I was charged 15 late fees after moving out of my apartment. I paid tha balance due as givin to me by one of their employees. What a shock. She got the total wrong and I was served an eviction notice. I went in and paid the remainder of the balance but they wont take the late fees off my record. Now I'm in collections after months of calls to explain my cituation. They owe me money but instead I have to pay them! It's only $75.00 they should be paying me and only $13.57 they are asking me to pay. It's not the money. I have plenty, but it's just the principle. Now they will get bad reviews every day for the next month because they are money hungry hoar's.

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  73. Equity Residential still striking away as they try to extort un-incurred expenses against residents. Signing anonymous from an anonymous state for now but it's another case of tacking on fees at the end of an apartment lease.

    Calling their corporates offices is no help -- they refuse to return calls wherein they deem anonymous. To them, it's not enough to leave a name, number and brief reason for call; they also want apartment complex and unit number. LOL, as if that will get me an unbiased listening ear.

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  74. Does anyone have experience with Equity Residential and Port Royale in Fort Lauderdale, FL? I was looking int moving in there, but from the sounds of this I may be better off somewhere else!

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  75. Don't rent with Equity. They stole money from me. A very bad management company all around. It's a shame because their apartments are nice. Currently suing them to get deposit back.

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  76. Equity Residential doesn't care about it's consumers or their own staff. Turnover is insane. I worked in the Ft. Lauderdale office under a tyrant who was known for his screaming abusive antics resulting in many other bodies before me and after me piling up. In addition, this guy was bisexual, hit on me and when I complained to human resources he fired me. The organization closes ranks & protects their executives. You'll be sorry if you either live in one of their apartments or take a job there.

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  77. Briarwoodd Apartments in Sunnyvale CA..Equity Residential is the WORST !!!! Unfair billing scams ! Will not return your deposit and will make up shit to charge you money for when you move out NO MATTER WHAT! It's a rip off. They entered my apartment without my permission and had no problem with me having a dog when I signed my lease and they took my deposit, a month into my lease they started giving me a hard time about my dog...and charged me extra rent. (my dog is a SERVICE ANIMAL) I just paid it to avoid a problem. The next month they wanted a letter from my doctor...so I got them a letter from my doctor. The next month they wanted me to take my dog to a vet and have a vet write a letter explaining my dogs training. This IS CRAZY! Unfair , deceptive business practices !!!Avoid this place like the plague! These people are SCUM!!!!

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  78. Forget Port Royale...I work for Equity & we get reduced rent there. I can see both sides & what Equity is doing is illegal all the way around. They don't care. The only concern they have is that their top management executive staff gets their bonuses...and if that means breaking laws, well, too bad for residents. They keep getting away with it.

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  79. I lived in City Pointe apts for 3 years and 3 weeks. I was charged $125 for cleaning a carpet that was supposed to be replaced, and painting and materials for paint that was beyond its lifespan. The property manager has ignored my calls and emails, and now my only option is to take them to small claims court. I plan on leaving a copy of the Department of Consumer Affairs policy regarding refund of security deposits on everyone's door so they dont mess around with anyone else without a fight!

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  80. I lived in the Madison at Wells Branch in Austin several years ago. The buildings around the office were well maintained but our area across the street had burned out lights and dirty pools.

    While we lived there we saw 8 tenants around us evicted...that's unbelievably high. We wondered how such a thing could be......until we found out the hard way.

    One month before our lease expired we were served with an eviction notice because we were 8 days late paying the rent. So many fees were added to the rent that was due that we had to take an extra week to come up with the extra $300.....but by then we had been served by a bailiff. The result? A judgment against us!

    We have rented in many places but this is the only time such a thing has ever happened to us.

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  81. I agree, as a former employee in Washington State this company actually encourages it's employees to charge as much as possible at move out in order to obtain revenue. The place I worked at actually sent out a letter stating that utilities were going up and the company makes no profit off of utilities. BIG FAT LIE! Equity is all about the corporate monster and making money. That is why I no longer work for them!

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  82. Someone told me they are allowing people with evictions to move in and that is why they treat everyone like that.

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  83. I had such a bad experience with this company, they're horrible!! They will try to take as much money from you as they can. The utility bill per month was outrageous, I only found out after I moved in that the water/sewer bill was not based on personal use but on the amount of apartments in the complex, meaning I was almost never in my apartment but was paying for the other people (more than $100 per month for a 2 bedroom, unsane!). This is asbolutely unacceptable and illegal!! I really hope this company get caught one day. Equity residential are bunch of crooks who are involved in unethical business practice.

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  84. We lived in one of their apartments, Key Isle, for almost 3 years. When the lease had expired, and they knew we were looking to move out, they charged me an additional $250 rent for the month! That was a 20% mark-up!

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  85. Me and my family also vitimised by them with huge utility charges ($100 p.m. for 1 studio(unfurnished) 475 sq ft and hot water charges extra) and un-authenticated huge charges($2047) while move-out.

    I was there for 1 year and I found some bed bug issue in last few months and reported to them, they never come back to me to resolved the issue. When lease expired and I move-out,they charged me $2047 which includes the bed bug treatment of $1500 and lot more items put as missing though the that apartment is not a furnish apt and nothing to miss.

    And they charged me for 2 times painting. and round up the total cost is $2047.

    They never give me back my diposit rather they are threatning me to pay the due amount else they will go for legal action.

    After market survey and consulting with some other people I found they are in huge loss of businees due to all their bad and by hook or cook they want to fulfill the gap and generate some revenue to maintain their business.

    As I am not much familier about any legal action So I am very much afraid , how to resolve this issue.

    All the charges they put are completely baseless and un-athenticated.
    And $2047 is not small amount for a unfurnished studio of 475 sq ft.

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  86. I shocked! For so long, so many people kept complaining, how many others that complain on other sites. Probably would be better if all of you fight them somehow. May be when some high authority will start an investigation. This is a problem everywhere. I am talking here about raising the rent, under different reasons. But I never saw anything like this kind of rip off.
    Who knows, may be all these large estate companies should be investigated, only God knows what we might discover.
    Good luck, and thank you for information.

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  87. amazing to see how equity maintains its perverse business tactics over the years...

    they have recently bought the building i am living in cambridge MA and guess what? they think the property has been undervalued by the previous owner. for me, that resulted in a 40% increase in my rent...with a 30 day notice prior to the end of my lease.

    when i complained that i had two children and needed more time to find a new home they offered a month by month lease at almost twice the rate i am paying today! it required a lot of back and forth for them to realize that it perhaps they should honor the 60-day notice agreement...

    what's worse is that while looking for apts, a broker has offered me a unit in my building of the same size as mine, but surprisingly 20% cheaper than the renewal offer i received.

    in fact, i have two co-workers that also lived in equity residential communities and they corroborated my findings... they will use their leverage to put pressure on existing residents who are settled in and want to avoid the expenses and hassle of moving out. their renewal offers are apparently always priced higher than what their available units are listed for.

    in addition, they are ruthless and unforgiving to their customers. shame on you equity residential !

    what i find more shocking, however, is to read posts of people from very different parts of the country who are experiencing similar problems. proof that these tactics are deliberate and part of the culture of their company.

    i will definitely never do business with equity residential again, and will let as many people i can know how they operate. if you are looking for an apt and stumble upon an equity residential managed property, my advice is: turn around and run as fast as you can !!!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for this story!

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  88. I have been getting double talk from the management, meaning that they have told me I could have certain items on my patio and then 6 months later have turned around and stated that I could not have said items because it was against their policy yet it is not in my lease NOR is it listed in the resident policy that I cannot have these items. I am in contact with an attorney and the fair housing dept for Los Angeles county and I will have what i was told I can have... As a responsible paying renter you DO have legal rights you just need to know who to go to for protecting your rights and how to assert them legally!! Furthermore, I have told them time and time again, that they need to contact me FIRST before just sending someone to come into my place because of my disabled and blind roommate but I still walked in to a maintenance person in my place one day from work, They cannot do that without your consent and a verbal or written agreement to enter 24 hrs prior, and if they do not do that for you then call the fair housing dept in your county or city and an attorney and report them immediately and KEEP DETAILED LOG NOTES ON EVERYTHING THEY DO AND SAY AND WHEN THEY DO IT AND SAY IT!!!!! CYA Cover your @ss!!

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  89. The original advice you received, to send the CA a letter stating that the debt was settled in full and provide a copy of the original letter demonstrating this fact, is sound imho. You might also want to pull a copy of your credit report to make sure they aren't reporting a debt they shouldn't even be collecting.
    Collection Agencies

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  90. I have bad credit because of the false accusations made by equity residential from 5 years ago!

    http://www.surveytool.com/customer-complaints/

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  91. Excellent tips. Really useful stuff .Never had an idea about this, will look for more of such informative posts from your side.. Good job...Keep it up

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  92. There are a few other reputable survey sites that aren't listed, but you do have a nice list of some of the best ones.

    http://www.surveytool.com/customer-complaints/

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  93. Hi. You can find a blank Fillable Residential Resale Real Estate Purchase Contract here.
    http://goo.gl/Jzvx05

    You can fill out the form, save it, fax it, and email it. Please feel free to use it.

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