South Bend tenant says landlord neglect is causing safety issues

It’s a story you hear all too often: issues between a tenant and a landlord. And right here in South Bend isn't any different.

So, as a tenant, what can you do to ensure that you have a positive renter’s experience?

Well, for those looking to rent do your research on your landlord.

That means screening your landlord, ask for references, find out how long they have been a landlord, look for past lawsuits or judgments against them, make sure you know your rights as a tenant and the list goes on.

The same goes for landlords.

Do background checks on your potential renters, get everything in writing, make repairs and keep those lines of communication open.

Doing some of these simple things could make a renter’s experience, as well as a landlord’s experience, a lot better.

Unfortunately, for one South Bend resident, things that are broken in her home are just not getting fixed.

Nekeesha Walker has lived in her home for about a year now and says she likes her landlord as a person. Unfortunately, she says her landlord is just not fixing things that are broken, making her home unsafe.

Walker says a couple of those items were her sink and her refrigerator. She says they were broken for months before they were fixed. Now, there are more issues.

She says her back stairs broke when her husband stepped on them, most of her windows don't have locks or screens and some of these issues are costing her money. For example, she says her toilet was leaking causing her water bill to go up.

But safety seems to be Walkers biggest worry.
“I want to take care of my family. I want my children to be safe and living in this house is not it,” says Nekeesha Walker.

“My son walked up the stairs and they broke. My baby fell through some stairs and that, that’s not safe. That’s not me keeping him safe”.

NewsCenter16 reached out to Walker’s landlord. She answered the phone the first time we called saying that she put a work order in for August, but she says she couldn’t talk because she was at her lawyer’s office. She said she would call WNDU back but she never did.

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