Ask a Dispatcher
Q. Alright, me & a friend signed a lease and was pro-rated a trailer out in N. Douglas, and when we originally looked at it, it was nice inside, but it had all of the landlord's furniture in it. We met with her at her other house downtown and signed a 6 month lease and gave her $500 for a "Cleaning deposit (Non refundable)" and roughly $677 prorate. We get to the place a day later and it's completely filthy. Nothing was cleaned, there was mold on the walls and cigarette butts left everywhere. It was clearly not touched other than to move her things out. So we call her and tell her it's not livable and we would like our money back. We even said to just give us $1000, out of the $1177 for her time wasted. She offered to give us the deposit back, but I'd rather have it all. She gave us $250 about two weeks ago and said "I'll bring you the other $250 the first of Nov." So we let it go from there.. I called her today and she very rudely answered and said "We decided you can just take us to court. Good luck! Bye!" and hung up on me.. Basically I'm wondering if I have anything to back up a suit on this? I have photos of the disgusting place, and really it's not livable and she has children that live in the mold infested trailer 6 months of the year and it's really not healthy. Should I take this higher?
Dear Juneau Resident,
First, there is the dispute over money for the trailer. JPD is not well versed in landlord/tenant law since we don't get involved until there is criminal activity. Thankfully there hasn't been violence, property held hostage, or the other types of nastiness that lead to police intervention. What you need is advice from a lawyer who is well versed with these situations. Alaska legal services can provide free legal services to those who qualify or you might want to consult your own legal advisor.
As for the other issue, about children living in an unhealthy environment, you would be shocked at the living conditions that exist right here in Juneau for both adults and children. In the scheme of what officers see inside homes every day, I am not sure how the situtation you describe will rate as far as a risk to the children but you can always report it to OCS and let them decide if follow up is warranted. Keep in mind that your report will be viewed in the context of you also being in a property dispute with the parent.