East Cleveland Apartment tenant: ‘I can’t live here like this’

Published: Dec. 7, 2022 at 8:55 PM EST
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EAST CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - A woman in East Cleveland says she’s been suffering for more than a year, living with mold, no heat, and no hot water.

After repeated attempts to contact the city and her landlord, she reached out to the 19 Troubleshooters for help.

“I have not had heat in a whole year,” said Fatima Goddard, a tenant at the Super Luxor Apartments in East Cleveland.

Goddard took us through her apartment, pointing out the unsafe and unsanitary issues she’s lived in for more than a year.

The list of problems seems never-ending.

There’s no heat, closets are covered in mold and mildew, she has a ceiling with a giant hole in it, no hot water, and brown water dripping from the shower.

Goddard says the problems started in the summer of 2021.

She reached out to her landlord, but said when they did make fixes, they were sub-par at best. She says one of their solutions included removing fungus with a wet rag.

That’s when she reached out to the city.

“Here I’m writing him back on 8/24, 8/25m asking him, ‘were you able to reach out to the property management?’” said Goddard.

When she got nowhere with that, she stopped paying rent, refusing to pay for a place that wasn’t getting fixed.

With nowhere else to turn, she she called us and we got to work.

The first few calls to the property management went no where.

We tried the city of East Cleveland, too, getting forwarded to voicemail after voicemail.

That’s when we decided to talk to Z4 Properties face to face.

An agent with Z4 Properties, Phyllis Ferguson, said they acquired the Super Luxor Apartments back in May and it came with a slew of issues they didn’t know about.

“When I came to this property, all of them were in dire straights,” said Ferguson. “The prior management team had many areas of opportunities that hadn’t been addressed.”

Now that they’re addressing these issues, Ferguson says they’re doing the best they can with a short staff. She promised to help Goddard, committing to sending her newly-hired maintenance team as soon as possible.

“She’s actually going to be number one,” said Ferguson, referring to Goddard.

Goddard also received an eviction notice because she wasn’t paying rent.

We asked the property owner about that. They say they’re looking into the situation.