Management firm responds to ‘outraged’ tenants

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Published: Aug. 16, 2022 at 11:36 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 17, 2022 at 11:36 AM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - Tenants of the Samara East Apartments were provided with some relief after reporting no air conditioning to WIS last week.

Now seven days after the initial report, an affiliate with the New Jersey-based parent company agreed to an interview regarding 8100 Bayfield Rd in Columbia.

“There are a few units that we do know of that have had A/C issues. That’s completely normal in our industry... these are not brand-new buildings,” said Sean Landsberg, Senior Vice President of Operations at Dasmen Residential LLC.

According to Landsberg, every tenant without working A/C was provided at least one window unit depending on the size of their apartment. ‘Maybe’ eight units were confirmed by Dasmen Tuesday morning.

"This is with a window unit and industrial fan running,” said anonymous tenant one.
"This is with a window unit and industrial fan running,” said anonymous tenant one.(Andrew Fancher)

However, Cammie in Building 29 says she already purchased two window units prior to the complementary roll-out. She says her family does not anticipate reimbursement from Dasmen.

“When you move into an apartment, you expect for everything to work and run in order to live in there. And that’s not the case out here at Samara East... the complex is getting worse,” said Cammie.

Wooden step installed in concrete and steel stairway at Building 18.
Wooden step installed in concrete and steel stairway at Building 18.(Andrew Fancher)

Since purchasing the property in March, Dasmen has fully renovated 30 apartments with plans to improve 70 percent of their units in the next 24 months. Landsberg says over $1,500,000 is set aside in capital improvements for Samara East. They have already implemented a new pool, pet park, and outdoor resident lounge.

"I don't know understand why they’re building a dog park when a lot of people are living in...
"I don't know understand why they’re building a dog park when a lot of people are living in uninhabitable conditions… this is the mold in [my] closet they tried painting over," said an anonymous tenant.(Andrew Fancher)

Upon revisiting the Samara East Apartments, eight tenants reported ‘severe’ mold to WIS. This, before the property manager ordered us to leave for a second time.

“I can smell the mold from the apartment below me. They have to sleep with the windows open. I even went to the office and told them about it. They tried to play like they didn’t know what I was talking about,” continued Cammie.

Landsberg says he has no direct knowledge of any mold issues at Samara East. However, he confirmed that anyone with an open work order will have their issues addressed ‘soon.’

“I’m not going to say we’re perfect and everything that we’ve ever done is perfect because that’s just not fair. But I could say that we try our best,” concluded Landsberg.

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