Bogus tenants cost couple renting home

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FAIRVIEW HEIGHTS, IL (KTVI) – When you don’t have time to sell your house, but have to move, renting becomes the most attractive option. In this case, the tenants were all wrong for this property.

Mirinda and Bryant Walker built a home in Fairview Heights and then had to move out of town. Bryant is an engineer in the United States Army. They entered into a management agreement with Cecil Management Group in O’Fallon Illinois. The couple paid the company the $1,000 fee.

“They were supposed to do a background check, criminal and civil, They were supposed to do income verification, And they were also supposed to make sure who ever moved in the home could afford the home.” said Mirinda Walker.

The tenant submitted a pay stub as proof of income. But, the Walkers discovered the pay stub and the employer were bogus. Court records show other civil judgements for non-payment of rent in Illinois and Missouri. In this case, they never paid any rent. A $5,700 judgement was ordered by the court in favor of the Walkers. They haven’t seen a dime. But, they’ve spent thousands to clean the carpet, paint the dirty and blood stained walls, power-wash the oil stained driveway and remove the maggot infested trash.

“We paid what we thought was an expert to prevent this type of thing So it was very disconcerting especially to only have them in the home for three months, and to sustain so much of a financial loss, it was pretty difficult.” said Mirinda Walker.

A spokesperson for the management company declined an on camera interview. But, I was told they are trying to settle this with the Walkers. The couple has been offered a settlement amount of $5,000.

If you need to use a management company, be sure you do your homework before signing any agreements. Be sure you can get your hands on income and court documents before accepting the tenant. Call us if you have a consumer issue. The toll free line is open Monday through Thursday between 11am and 1pm. The number is 1-800-782-2222.

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