Residents stop paying rent over maintenance issues at Topeka apartments

Local News

TOPEKA (KSNT) – People at a Topeka apartment complex are taking action against their landlord. Some residents at the Hillsdale Apartments are circulating a petition that says tenants are stopping paying rent.

That includes Grace Young. She has lived at the complex for about two years. Young said she’s been without air conditioning since the middle of June.

“I’m not going to pay for a place that I can’t even be comfortable in,” Young said. “I’m not going to keep giving them my money if it’s obviously not going to make it livable.”

Wogan Group based in Tennessee owns the apartment complex.

Multiple phone calls and emails KSNT News sent to Wogan Group have not been returned.

Young said there has been a lack of communication from the owners and the message they’re sending is clear.

“That they’re not doing what they’re supposed to do and that they’re slumlords,” Young said.

Other issues tenants say they have include mold, broken garbage disposal, broken bathroom fan, and damaged stairs.

Chris Frisbie moved in about a month and a half ago. He said when he moved in, his laundry room was a mess, the lock on his door was broken, and now he doesn’t have hot water.

“Five-minute showers is not fun, kind of have to get in and get out,” Frisbie said.

He said he had heard good things about Hillsdale from friends. It’s close to his work and school. But he said it seems like the owners don’t care with this many problems going unfixed.

“Just wanted a fair place to live to be honest,” Frisbie said.

Former maintenance workers said the complex wasn’t paying them, so they stopped fixing problems.

One of the leaders of the petition said the owners need to find a solution fast.

“No one should have to be forced to stay in this situation, keep paying rent without the repairs that are needed,” said Sandy White, a resident that helped start the petition.

Residents and contractors say they are considering how they should sue the owners.

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