‘I have nowhere to go’: SE tenants ask city for help - KPTV - FOX 12

‘I have nowhere to go’: SE tenants ask city for help

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Image: KPTV Image: KPTV

Dozens of tenants facing eviction and rent increases in southeast Portland are making a bold request to the city, asking the Portland Housing Bureau to buy their apartment complex from its new owners, which would allow them to stay in their homes.

Tenants at Holgate Manor Apartments are asking the housing bureau, which is overseen by Mayor Ted Wheeler, to use money from its $258 million affordable housing bond levy to fund the purchase.

In early March, tenants received a letter informing them the property had recently been purchased by new owners, and that renovations were necessary.

The letter said not all tenants would be able to stay in their homes during those renovations, but that tenants would be given $4,200 in relocation expenses.

A spokesperson for the owners said those that wished to return to their apartments after renovations would have to pay a 9.9% rent increase, which would still be considered a “discounted rate.”

Anna Landya, who has been living at the apartment complex for 25 years, said can’t afford to pay more than she already does.

“My husband just recently died a couple weeks ago, and I’m just myself alone,” Landya, who turns 92 in December, said through a translator. “I don’t have children; I have nowhere to go.”

Asked to comment on the prospect of buying the apartment complex, the housing bureau released a statement Monday saying, “Preventing displacement is a top priority for us in how we invest bond funds. We don’t know whether Holgate Manor is for sale at this point. We are open to communicating with the new owner to discuss what the terms of a sale might be as a starting point. All bond acquisitions are vetted through a formal review process and must meet the conditions outlined in the bond’s established Strategic Framework.”

According to the property owners, tenants have a flexible move-out schedule.  Those who move out between April 1st and May 31st will receive a $600 signing bonus, and up to $4,500 in relocation assistance at the time keys are surrendered.

Those who move out between June 1 and July 31 will receive a $400 signing bonus and up to $4,500 in relocation assistance.

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