UPDATE: More Residents Complain About Mold in Apartments
Photo: Video by kmir6.com
CREATED Sep. 13, 2013
PALM SPRINGS - Inside the Whispering Palms Apartments on Arenas Road a question lurks-- is there mold inside the complex?
Many tenants believe so, as well as people who have vacated, saying the main reason they had to move out was because of the poor living conditions, mold stench and negligent management.
KMIR 6 first reported the story on September 4, and since then at least nine current and former tenants have come forward with mold allegations. The manager of the complex, Stacey Barasch, says she doesn't believe there's any mold in the units.
"If you have a loaf of bread on your countertop, and this loaf of bread has mold on it, yeah you have mold in your apartment," says Barasch, "No one has ever shown me anything that is indicated that there's any mold here."
Many of the residents are frustrated with Barasch, including those who've moved out, saying their mold complaints aren't being heard.
"They're going to always complain. Ask every single one of them, what do they do for a living. They do nothing. They're on either disability or they're on welfare or they're on housing or something and put that on record. All of them are trying to get something for nothing," explains Barasch.
The supervisor for the City of Palm Springs Code Enforcement Department says the City doesn't inspect for mold inside apartments and neither does the Riverside County Health Department. Both agencies told us it's up to the residents to hire private mold inspection services.
The City's Code Enforcement does have an active case with Whispering Palms regarding a leaking roof in one of their apartments. This, the supervisor explains, can lead to mildew or mold-like conditions. The City gave the complex's management 14 days to comply, and so far, it has been 30 days since the problem hasn't been fixed.
Barash says the maintenance team will address the leaking roof sometime this weekend. Meanwhile, she says the tenants' safety is her number one priority.
"If they don't let me into their apartment, then I can't fix the situation. That being said, I know 100 percent, I know my maintenance team goes out of their way to rectify any situation immediately," says Barasch.
Friday, the Metropolitan Management Company that manages Whispering Palms declined to comment once again.
This complex is listed on apartmentratings.com, in which 7 out of 29 reviews "mold" is mentioned.