Daniella

City: 
San Diego
Residence Type: 
Single unit
Landlord Type: 
Other

I moved into 6172 Mary Lane Dr. on July 15, 2010. I was the first of my 3 other roommates to move into the house and upon opening the front door of the house for the very first time I was greeted by a front room/dining area filled with bugs (ants, fruit flies etc.) due to a dead bird that was somehow placed inside of the house. My landlord Stala Gload had assured us that the house was clean and ready to move into.

During the two years I resided in 6172 Mary Lane I quickly noticed that Starla, our current Landlord and house manager was a very popular individual. We would often receive knocks on the door from individuals asking for Starla in order to serve her court documents and appearances. Twice, we even had the San Diego Sheriffs department abruptly disturb us at odd hours of the evening looking for Starla or anyone that might know where she is.

Throughout our residence at 6172 Mary Lane, myself and the three other girls living there treated this home in ways I am certain it has never been kept up by past tenants. We reported issues with the house often to Starla and we had to deal with reoccurring problems due to lack of time and energy spent fixing the issue in the first place:

Illegal mini-dorms - behind this single family residence there are 3 separate studio units that each have their very own full kitchen and bathroom. At least 1 -2 individuals would reside in these studios and Starla charged around $900 per studio. Utilities and bills had to be shared with these tenants as well which made paying bills, utilities etc. confusing and complicated every single month. These units/studios/mini dorms are certainly illegal and are not included on the property listing and should be further investigated.

Fruit Flies – from the day I moved into 6172 Mary Lane I reported an issue I noticed with tiny flies that at first resembled fruit flies. My house was always up kempt to the highest degree and spotless. Starla had addressed this issue and sent her maintenance man Sam often to check the situation out and fix the problem. Our entire house at one point became a swarm of tiny, black, continuously buzzing bugs, and on a few occasions we had to leave our house for the entire day in order for Sam to spray pesticides and bug killer to expel the problem temporarily. Days later the bugs would return and we would have to contact Starla once again to address the problem.

Deposit Refute

I am requesting that I receive the same deposit in return as my roommates. Our move out date was on May 31, 2012 and the four of us moved out that afternoon after cleaning the house to tip-top condition for 5 days straight. Starla was very busy that entire day, so busy in fact that she couldn’t come do a walk through which she is required to do by law, and had us leave our keys in the kitchen drawer. I have physical proof that the very next morning, without any time to waste, the new girls that were now renting the house moved in. This means that first and foremost, there is no physical way that Starla had anyone come clean the house, let alone look at it. Starla deducted $52.00 from each of our deposits in order to cover a “Mandatory Cleaning Fee.” I am arguing that this cleaning never took place and if anything my roommates and I should each have been paid $52.00 for the amount of effort we put into scrubbing this house clean. Much cleaner than when I had incidentally moved in.

My largest area of concern is in regards to the sum Starla deducted for the apparent “Rent” she very naively misinterpreted. I had spoken to Starla weeks prior to my individual move out in regards to other properties available for summer rent. Starla is after all a house manager/”Landlord” to over 19 properties and I was considering remaining in San Diego for the summer to find a job. As the days nearing the end of my lease came closer, and I heard no word from Starla I made other arrangements to move elsewhere. My roommate, Cory Nakamura, was in a similar situation and urgently needed a place to store ALL of her belongings until she found a new living arrangement in San Diego. Starla offered her to store her belongings in one of the rooms of the house that would not be occupied until August 1st, 2012. I had no communication with Starla regarding this agreement however as I began moving out my belongings I realized that one of my boxes couldn’t fit into the two sedans I somehow shoved four years of my life into. Upon this realization I quickly asked both Cory and Starla simultaneously (in text message) if it would be okay that I kept my box in the room where Cory was sorting her stuff for a few days until I could arrange to come pick it up. After a simple “yes” response from Starla and a yes from my roommate Cory, I heard nothing from Starla again for four days. Suddenly, through email communication Starla decided that Cory and I were splitting the storage and that somehow it seemed fair that we split the cost of the room for one month totaling $425.00 to us each. When I discovered this piece of information four days later after explaining to Starla that this storage of my one box was incredibly temporary and didn’t seem fair considering I had only been storing one box there and it was in the closet and out of sight, not even near any of my roommate Cory’s belongings. I responded via email to Starla immediately informing her that my friend and house-mate Nicholas Baird (the current resident living in the back of 6172 Mary Lane property in a very questionably illegal garage renovated into a studio bedroom) to get my box out of the room inside of the house and keep it for me for a few weeks until I could find a ride back down to San Diego to pick it up. He agreed and very generously held my box for a few week in his closet. Starla incidentally interpreted this otherwise and deducted an additional $30.00 from my deposit to cover a “Storage in Garage” fee which never occurred. I don’t believe I should be charged for storing my box in my friends house and I certainly do not believe it is fair that I was charged $425.00 for “Rent of a Shared Master Bedroom” that I never agreed to or actually took advantage of….

My last and final issue concerning my return of security deposit is itemization #6, item 1: May 1 to May 31, 2012 rent shortage of $50.00.
Exactly two months prior to the end of our lease Starla contacted the four of us via email inquiring if any of us could assist her in the re-rental of the property we were living in, aware that we were graduating and no longer in need of the house. In the email, Starla had mentioned that if we would help her show the house, we would receive a $200.00 discount in our rent for our final month of May 2012. The four of us explained to her that we are all busy with work and school, however if it worked out with our schedules we would be more than happy to assist her in showing the house. Starla got back to us about a week later via text message informing us that Sam, the Maintenance Man, would be coming around to show the house that Saturday morning at 10:30 to a large group of interested tenants. The four of us roommates then planned to be out of the house that morning in order to be out of the way for Sam to show the house. I later returned to the house at around 11:30 a.m. after getting breakfast down the street and barely 5 minutes after walking in through my front door, five girls come walking up my front steps and knock on the door. Our kitchen window barred no privacy so I was at this point obligated to open the door to see what they needed. The girls had apologized they were late and that they were supposed to see the house earlier but for some reason couldn’t make it. They also mentioned Starla’s name and said she specifically said they were allowed to see the house. I agreed, knowing it would take but two minutes to show them the house and get on with my day. The girls were very nice and quickly checked out the house, back yard and bedrooms (one of my roommates was even sleeping in one!) and then they left. Two days later the same girls came knocking on the door again, this time, Cory opened the door and they came with two other girls who wanted to see the house. Again, the door was opened and we kindly showed them our home. Later that week, the girls came by again, this time with leases signed in envelopes and with a request that we see that these papers make it into Starla’s hands. We assured them of this and were made aware that these girls would now be the new tenants of 6172 Mary Lane. Our house was rented one month before we moved out. Throughout the last month we lived in 6172 Mary Lane we not only received more interested individuals coming by wondering if they could see the home and asking if it was still available, likely due to the fact that Starla never bothered to remove the listing or any ads promoting the wonderful home, its space and location. Knowing that my roommates and I directly impacted the re-rental of the house, we all later deducted a mere $50.00 from each of our rent checks after being told this was the agreement from our Landlord Starla, that if we assisted her in showing the home and thereby renting it, that we would receive this generous discount. Considering the fact that all three of my roommates also deducted $50.00 from their rent for May 2012, it seems strange that Starla didn’t seem bothered by the fact that they too deducted this amount from their rent checks. I however, was penalized, even after Starla texted me asking why I had deducted this amount from my check that month and I reminded her of the agreement she had with us and then I heard nothing in response. Nothing about this situation again or even a word explaining that I wrongfully deducted this amount and owed it to her, she simply said nothing about it again. If Starla would have gone out of her way to explain to me in words that this was not ok, she could have said so. However, since she said nothing, I made sure to remind her that I did in fact open the door to the girls who ended up renting the house. I didn’t need to do that and the house would have taken longer to rent. I believe that it is because of my help and kindness that I should be entitled to this agreed upon discount on my rent, considering I did in fact help show the house. I even lied and said great things about the house, mentioning nothing of the two years of hell we experience with both our landlord and her piece of crap house.

As a final note in regard to my security deposit, I am not only outraged by the above described items that I am fairly owed money for, but I wanted to mention that my deposit was not returned until August 8, 2012. My two other roommates, Taylor Baresic and Allison Phillips received their security deposits about 30 days after move-out, we are legally entitled to our security deposit after 25 days of move out. For some reason, Starla would not communicate in response to my multiple and various attempts to contact her in regards to receiving my security deposit in return. Upon finding out that Taylor and Allison received deposit checks from Starla, I became even more frustrated and attempted getting in contact with her more than a dozen individual times. Finally, after weeks, I was contacted by Starla’s assistant, whose name I don’t even know, who asked me what it was exactly that I needed from Starla. I then had to go and explain to a complete stranger that I was still short of my $720.00 (the amount Taylor and Allison received in their deposit checks) and that I wasn’t quite sure why my former landlord has been completely shinning me off for two months. After about 4 and a half weeks of back and fourth “communication” with Starla’s assistant I finally lost all hope and decided I would try my luck contacting Starla one final time. Low and behold, Starla actually responded to my short yet concise text reminding her that she still owed me my rent. In response she asked, “To which address would you like it sent to,” in which I replied with my address and a question to PLEASE inform me of the amount she was planning to make the check out to in order to not have to run into any miscommunications. Starla promised me that she would get back to me the next morning when she went into the office and discussed this matter with her ASSISTANT. I never heard back from Starla again and I received a check in the mail in the amount of $366.62 and an itemization explaining why she deducted over $500 from my rent check.

I feel that this situation is completely unfair. I have been taken complete advantage of and Starla Gload will and continue taking advantage of more and more young individuals solely due to the fact that they are first time renters unaware of the scams she is playing with them. I am not naïve and I will not stand to be taken advantage of and discriminated against just because this is the first house I have ever rented.

After renting from Starla and Joseph Gload for 2 years. I was discriminated against and singled out from my 3 other roommates and did not receive my security deposit back for over 6 months after move-out. After repeatedly trying to contact and receive my security deposit in return (as my roommates had 3 months after move out) I filed a small claims suit against Starla Gload and the individual I wrote out my rent checks to for 2 years, Joseph Gload.

Starla and Joseph did not show up to the the first court date and in their favor, the judge decided to re-schedule the hearing for no apparent reason. During the re-scheduled hearing, the two were again a no-show and the case proceeded without them and in my favor.

Over 60 days after the judgement credit in my favor was honored, Starla sent an appeal to the court to vacate the judgement. This time around, Starla decided to show up, however she was alone. Thinking she could represent her 'minor' son, Joseph Gload, Starla Gload admitted to the court that Joseph was her son and not available to represent himself. The court did not buy this nor the motion to vacate the judgement and again the judgment was set to be paid to me plus the added interest.

For some reason in the state of California, defendants have a lot of leeway in small claims court and have the accessibility to drag on a judgment for a lifetime. I have spent over 11 months after moving out of this woman' property trying to get my security deposit back and at this point it is not about the money anymore.

This is not the first time Starla Gload has been sued, taken to small claims court and weaseled her way out of re-paying innocent college students their security deposits and sadly it probably won't be the last.

Please take this advice from an SDSU alumni that was taken advantage of by a fraudulent individual and her affiliates, she owns over 20 homes near the San Diego State University area where she only rents to college students.

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