CALL 6: Tenants with no heat fear asbestos; Ocean Pointe Investments promises to make repairs

INDIANAPOLIS -- Shannon Fernandez pays $550 a month to live a 209 North Addison on the west side of Indianapolis.

She had no heat during the recent cold blast. The furnace was set to be replaced before she moved in, but it wasn't because it contains asbestos and will take special certification to remove and replace.

"Well at least I have heat in my van, but I don't want to face that reality of living in my van. It's not a choice I want,” said Fernandez.

Up the stairs from her basement where the furnace doesn’t work, there are other problems which raised questions about why the home was ever rented out. There’s a leak in the kitchen apparently caused by the toilet use next door.

"When they flush the toilet - toilet water is coming down,” said Fernandez.

There’s a bucket over the kitchen sink to catch the leaking water.

Then her refrigerator is on her porch. She says  the kitchen electrical outlets are not reliable.

Fernandez’s leasing company Ocean Pointe Investments did offer her chance to move to a different property. That location did not work out. 

She was also given a list of homes to visit. It turns out of the dozen she could check out none, as we learned, are in compliance with the city of Indianapolis Landlord registry.

Each now facing a possible fine of $500. The business will have 30 days to get into compliance with the city. The registry allows the city to hold landlords accountable for their properties like 951 Oxford.

Based on what we saw, and Ocean Pointe confirmed it was not ready for move-in but it’s on the list to be rented once the repairs are made. 

Ocean Pointe's attorney John Tompkins sat down with Call 6 Investigates to address Fernandez’s situation.

"This is an unfortunate situation no property management company wants one potential tenant to run into the two properties within the thousand that have problems on the same day. Ocean Pointe is acknowledging they were issues they were unaware of until late in the process,” said Tompkins.

Tompkins says the company has 1,400 rentals and is working on a project with Eskenazi Health to make housing available to low-income families and homeless individuals in the city.

"It's that kind of partnership help the community not just from a big perspective but a community perspective as well."

Fernandez is wanting a home that is safe and has heat. 

Ocean Pointe offered to put up at a hotel until a property is available or refund her deposit. As of this writing, no decision has been made.

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