Residents paying to break lease at Lexington apartment after their unit was destroyed

WATCH | Residents paying to break lease at Lexington apartment after their unit was destroyed
Published: Jan. 11, 2023 at 10:29 PM EST
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Several Lexington families are moving out of an apartment complex after broken water pipes destroyed their homes.

In December, The city condemned ten units at Veridian Apartments on Armstrong Mill. However, some units that were damaged were not condemned, and Residents tell us they are having to break their leases because their apartments are unlivable.

A couple who was hopeful heading into the new year. But after the holidays, when Elizabeth Tramontin and Grant Minix got back to their apartment at the Veridian, it was anything but the fresh start they wanted.

“We walk in on New Years Day to everything destroyed,” said Tramontin. “Then not only that but not to have any support from the people who knew our stuff was under water and didn’t call us to let us know. We have no help from anyone. Then our insurance adjustor can’t get ahold of anyone in the office. So we can’t even receive payment.”

Tramontin and Minix now live in an apartment with a partially collapsed ceiling. The walls and carpet are covered in mildew. And compared to some of their neighbors, they’re not even the worst off.

“Water comes through the electrical outlets and electric switches,” said Minix. “You worry about that, too, just living here. If it’s really safe. My family’s really concerned.”

However, now they are worried about their neighbors. Saying they noticed on one door there was a ‘condemned’ sign. Then right next to it, a letter from the complex, telling them to pay rent or be evicted.

“It’s a huge red piece of paper, taped with the word condemned in with big letters. You can’t miss it. Then right beside it, a seven-day to evict letter,” said Tramontin.

The couple says they still had to pay this month’s rent. But they’ve also decided to break their lease. Even with a significantly damaged apartment, they’re told it will cost two months’ rent.

“We’ll dispute it,” said Tramontin. “We have our own plan. But for anyone else, it’s just crazy. You’re either going to pay $4,000, or you’ll be stuck living here.”

WKYT has reached out to the attorney representing Veridian Apartments as well as the city’s Fair Housing Coalition. We have yet to hear back from either.