Residents say sewage, trash and neglect make their Miami-Dade condo complex uninhabitable

(WSVN) - Residents of a South Florida condo building say their complex is uninhabitable, and it’s not the first time 7News has exposed the problems. The Nightteam’s Brian Entin investigates.

Right when you pull into Villas of Naranja, you can tell there are big problems.

The guard gate is missing.

There is trash all over the place, and many of the units are abandoned.

When 7News showed up, the residents lined up to tell their stories.

Naomi Watson, resident: “Half of the windows are broken out. They make promises they don’t keep!”

Dominique Cain, resident: “Roaches are bad. There’s holes in the wall they haven’t fixed.”

Naomi Watson lives here. She took 7News on a tour.

Naomi Watson: “Look how high this grass is. Are you serious? You need to care about the people.”

The mailboxes are mostly broken, and Naomi says the trash piles keep growing.

Naomi Watson: “It has been here about three or four months. Come on, dudes. They do nothing. They don’t care about these people out here. They don’t care!”

But of all the problems, this is the worst for Naomi.

Brian Entin: “It smells terrible right here.”

Naomi Watson: “Yes, it is. All the smell is coming in my house.”

One of the abandoned units is right next to Naomi’s condo, and there is a sewage leak inside.

Naomi Watson: “Look how nasty that is. All the sewage is coming in my house.”

If this complex looks familiar, it’s because 7News has been here before investigating rats.

Brian Entin: “Did they chew all this up?”

In March, the condos were overrun, and a rat even bit a tenant.

Resident: “I told this guy about these rats six months ago, and look what I’m still dealing with six months later!”

The victim of the rat bite was on Section 8, and once 7News contacted the county, they moved her to a different complex, but many of the residents here are not on government assistance. They pay $1,200 per month for their units and feel stuck.

Naomi Watson: “I put these locks here on the door to keep somebody from breaking in my house because I work so hard for whatever I get.”

Getting in touch with the condo association was difficult. The president did not answer calls, and his listed address is a P.O. Box.

7News did find an attorney listed on property records, but he told 7News the association would not allow him to comment.

Miami-Dade County was notified about the sewage leak.

A county spokeswoman emailed 7News that the condo president, “…told staff that this apartment was recently acquired through foreclosure and is being put up for sale, and that [he] would have it boarded up and cleaned by this week.”

7News checked, and the unit was boarded up, and the sewage leak was stopped, but many of the other problems remain, and the residents feel ignored.

Dominique Cain: “When they do call him and tell him that these things are going on, he does not want to come fix it, and it’s just sad that you have to go through this because there are kids here at the end of the day, and it’s just ridiculous.”

Some neighbors are looking for a new place to live.

They risk losing their security deposits but are desperate for a safe, clean place to call home.

CONTACT 7INVESTIGATES:
305-627-CLUE
954-921-CLUE
clue@wsvn.com

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