American Homes 4 Rent - Worst Experience Ever
I moved into a house in DFW in Feb 2015 with the express understanding that we were going to break the lease. We said so up front. We were looking to buy a house and needed a short term rental. We were told Texas law can only allow them to charge rent until a new tenant is found.
In April 2015, the water department showed up at our house and said there was a leak. The leak was on the exterior of the side of the house. We called AH4R emergency maintenance phone number, they came out at midnight and turned the water off to the house. Then... nothing... nothing... nothing... 3 days later a plumber came to fix a broken pipe on the exterior wall near the laundry room. And he destroyed the drywall during the pipe repair. HE said someone else would come to fix the drywall. Meanwhile, there was a giant hole from the kitchen/laundry room area into the yard. Lots of bugs came in. The drywall repair guy called and scheduled an appointment to come fix it on a Saturday. He never showed up. So we rescheduled for the next Saturday. He never showed up. We scheduled for the next Friday. He never showed up. Finally we bought a house and were getting ready to move. We gave them our 60 day notice that we were vacating.
They finally came to fix the drywall. It took less than an hour to close up the hole, too bad it was open for over 3 weeks, costing me who knows how much in wasted electricity. Not to mention the busted pipe costs me a ton in the water bill.
When they got my 60-day notice that we were leaving. They sent me a bill for the remaining 6 months of rent ($9000) and said they were keeping my deposit ($1500).
Anyone who knows anything about contracts knows this is completely illegal. I went to my lawyer (for $150 consultation) and he even stated "this will be my easiest case in a long time". So we sent letters that outlined the law and how *** they are for even trying to get me to pay them $10500.
Finally the "district manager" or some similar title called me and said "oh there was a mistake in the letter we sent you, its really only $4000 that you'll owe. And I said "umm no, the law in the state of Texas says I owe you money until someone else moves in. I found you a new tenant who meets all the qualifications, and he'll be moving in on this date. I will pay you rent up until that date, and I expect my full security deposit back, or I'll take you to court." She promised to call me back the next day with an answer on the final amount owed. She never called me back.
So I paid the rent that I told them I would pay, and moved out. I sent a legal demand letter for my security deposit. They refunded my security deposit (except $45 for a burnt out light bulb... yes $45 for a light bulb).
Bottom line with this company: They sent me a bill they knew, or should know, was completely illegal. I had to threaten to sue them just to follow state laws and not send the account into collections. I've never been in a law suit before, but this was as close as I hope I ever get. I hope this company goes out of business and all their investors lose their shirts.
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