1,000 more residents evicted from storm-damaged apartments
WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - Around 1,000 Wilmington residents have less than a week to find a new place to live. Management at the Glen Apartments across from UNCW gave notice that the buildings are being condemned because of storm damage, and residents must be out by October 8.
Residents say the apartments, which were built in the 1960′s and 70′s, were not in great shape before the storm hit, but they are so bad now, management plans to level the apartment complex and start over. Tenants tell us their apartments flooded during the storm, and their units reek of must and mold.
“Sewer drainage in my tub, and roaches everywhere," resident Jan Decatur told us of seeing her apartment for the first time after she returned from evacuating. "Just walking in after being away, it was like, shock. Just the first day I was there, I was just walking around, ‘What do I do, what do I do?’”
While residents try to salvage what they can, property managers found new housing for some of them at a sister property in town called Pinewood, but there was not enough room for everybody. That seems to be a common theme with storm victims across our area, struggling to find a safe place to live after they were displaced due to hurricane damage. The search for affordable housing is especially difficult, and residents at The Glen say they are struggling to find an apartment at the $600 rate they were paying.
They are dealing with this at the same time many of them are trying to hold down full-time jobs, care for elderly parents and young children.
“Spending hours on the phone with the insurance companies and car rental people, it’s just mind boggling. What’s simple everyday stuff gets a little bit complicated when you are in this situation," Decatur explained. “It’s very emotional. I’ve been there for 8 years. I’ve established a neighborhood and stuff like that, and we’ve all got to go our different ways now, and that’s hard. And I’ve also got other issues in my family going on, so it’s piling up.”
Decatur says the lack of affordable options in WIlmington may push her back to Boston where she has family.
FEMA, the Red Cross, and the Cape Fear Volunteer Center are trying to help residents at The Glen, and they could use your help, too.
If you are available to physically help move some of these residents' belongings out of their apartments, the Cape Fear Volunteer Center will put you to work. They have a volunteer station set up in the Little Caesar’s parking lot across from UNCW on college road, and will be there every day this week trying to help residents during this difficult time. You can also sign up to help on their website, www.capefearvolunteercenter.org/
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