FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) - Some residents in the Hopewell Pointe housing community say moisture problems and even potential mold have made them want to move out. But officials with the non-profit agency in charge say they've already fixed problems brought to their attention.
Community Action of Northeast Indiana (CANI) is a not-for-profit organization geared toward fighting poverty. CANI teamed up with Keller Development to build the rent-to-own housing community Hopewell Pointe. Located in Waynedale, the homes were completed May of 2012.
CANI’s hope with the project is to lease the homes to low-income tenants for 15 years, then allow the tenant to purchase the home at around a third of the cost.
“The purpose here is to help lower income families achieve home ownership,” said Steve Hoffman, president and CEO of CANI. “In 15 years, we want to be able to sell them to low-income people. So we’re very interested in maintaining them.”
Julie Dodane says she and her two teenagers were some of the first in line to move in.
“It was an opportunity for me at my salary range to be able to lease to purchase a home and get out of an apartment setting,” Dodane explained.
Since then, she says her home has experienced extreme moisture problems that attracted insects called springtails.
“I was so upset. I could not believe that,” Dodane said. “I keep my house clean and these bugs were coming in and when I researched why, I was floored.”
CANI and property maintenance took care of the bugs, but it got Dodane and her friend thinking about potential mold. The two bought a consumer mold test, which they say turned out positive. The two showed 15 Finds Out mold that grew in a Petri dish.
“I have not seen mold inside of my house,” Dodane clarified. “However the last three months I have been home and I have been sick and not feeling well with no energy and have been to the emergency room and had respiratory issues.”
Dodane wasn’t the only tenant with moisture problems. Some residents took their complaints straight to Fort Wayne Neighborhood Code, which handed out violations to two Hopewell Pointe properties. It found one property had standing water because of “poor grading around the house.”
“We've added some tiling around the home, did some re-grading, just trying to beef up what was there in terms of any drainage,” Hoffman said. “I think we've dealt with the issues and I'm not concerned about it long term.”
Neighborhood Code found that same property had a draining issue in the bathtub. Hoffman said that was caused by hair clogging the drain.
Hoffman said CANI and New General Management (the property manager) have fixed moisture issues in three of the 35 homes in Hopewell Pointe. As for potential mold, Hoffman said it hasn’t been found in any home.
“We have not had anything that we've tested that's shown that,” Hoffman said. “We have not seen mold. We've had inspectors in there.”
When asked if he was concerned about the quality of the homes in Hopewell Pointe, Hoffman responded, “It does not concern me. I think that in any kind of development situation we're going to deal with maintenance issues.”
Residents in at least two other properties went out of their way to tell 15 Finds Out they were having major problems with their homes. They didn’t want to tell their stories on camera though.
Considering the complaints he has received, Hoffman wouldn’t call the housing problems major.
“I don’t think it’s anyone’s fault. I mean we’ve got a project, ok, we have three homes that have had some moisture issues that we’ve seen and we’ve addressed those issues. I think it’s been normal,” Hoffman said. “That’s certainly not what we’re trying to do is make people upset. We want them to have their home forever.”
Hoffman’s hope is far from reality for Dodane and some other residents. They are hoping to bail out of the 15-year plan by getting out of their lease as soon as possible.
Hoffman said CANI has already offered to let a couple of people out of their leases. That option is on the table for folks upset with the quality and condition of their homes.
“We’re not forcing anybody to stay there if they’re not satisfied with what’s happening there,” Hoffman said.
A doctor who provides abortions in Fort Wayne is losing his relationship with a local obstetrician and gynecologist who serves as the physician designee if a woman has post-abortion medical issues.
Lutheran Health Network CEO Brian Bauer received the prestigious Sagamore of the Wabash award at a ceremony Thursday afternoon.
Santa abandoned his traditional sleigh and arrived at Lutheran Children's Hospital in a fire truck.
Fort Wayne Animal Care and Control was busy Thursday afternoon responding to complaints of pets outside. Crews respond to every complaint in the hopes of preventing pets from freezing.
U.S. Census data shows that one Fort Wayne neighborhood is among the poorest in the state, and it the poverty rate has a direct correlation the rising crime statistics.
It was something that was never supposed to happen. A veteran who killed a woman in Indianapolis then took his own life was buried with full military honors. Since that day, the victim's family has been advocating against it.
The house fire affected traffic on U.S. 33 just north of Churubusco for over an hour. All lanes were back open less than two hours after the fire was called in.
Police said speed appeared to be a factor in a crash that all the occupants of the car seriously injured.
Three intersections on the north side of the city will have new left-turn signals that with a flashing yellow arrow. The new signals will be activated in January.
A plan is in the works to move Cindy's Diner from its current location in downtown Fort Wayne to another location one block northwest from its current location. The iconic restaurant has been a fixture downtown since 1990.
Former Komets executive, owner, general manager and coach Ken Ullyot passed away Thursday, Dec. 12, 2013, in Fort Wayne, Indiana, at the age of 92.
The organization claims such legislation would hamper the city's ability to grow economically and that Fort Wayne should be "competitive on a national level and be recognized as a community that thrives on diversity, innovation, and inclusion,”
A state commission seeking ways to improve the lives of Indiana's most vulnerable children is forming a task force to investigate whether there's a link between methamphetamine arrests and child welfare cases.
Scammers are claiming to be from a law enforcement agency and are threatening to arrest victims if they don't pay the fine for an alleged crime or debt.
The free course will go over the laws and regulations about squirrel hunting and will teach attendees how to field dress and prepare squirrels for the table.