Korrie Kennedy, senior in anthropology and medical laboratory science, attempted to rent from Frontier Property Management in August with her boyfriend, Brett Moss, former Kansas State student. However, on the day they tried to move in, they saw many unwelcome issues with the property.
Kennedy is no stranger to bad renting experiences.
“My most prevalent issues were when I attempted to rent from Frontier, which was supposed to be where I’m living now,” Kennedy said. “I was supposed to rent from them from August 2020 to July 2021.”
Kennedy and Moss planned to live at 200 S. Manhattan Ave. and expected to pay $850 a month in rent for the two-bedroom house.
“We decided on that house about six months prior to when we were supposed to move-in,” Kennedy said. “A day before move-in, on July 31, I got a phone call from their property manager Bianca that the previous tenant had stayed past their lease and so they needed more time to get the house in order, and apparently it was a huge mess.”
Kennedy told Frontier she would rather have the issues fixed before moving in and pushed back the move-in date.
Frontier is a property management company, meaning the company doesn’t own the house or apartments they manage — the company only provides management services to property owners.
“Our team is responsible for working with each individual property owner and figuring it out,” Tyler Holloman, owner, said previously. “If they have certain vendors that they like to use. We have some owners that prefer to do most of their maintenance themselves to save on cost. We have some owners who have, you know, relationships with other vendors and so it’s really owner-specific. Each property kind of has a different protocol for how it’s handled.”
When Kennedy and Moss arrived at their home, they were shocked by the state of the property. Moss’s parents arrived before the couple and warned them before they walked in.
“We couldn’t get in through the front door because there was a bunch of overgrown bushes lining the walkway and mosquitoes everywhere,” Kennedy said. “I’m extremely allergic to mosquitoes, so they had to open the back door for us and just go in through the backyard. It was a complete disaster.”
“We’re pretty sure something had gotten buried back there because that smelled like death,” Kennedy continued. “There were multiple two-by-fours in the yard with nails through them just laying around. I was moving in with a dog, and they were aware of that.”
The interior of the home also smelled bad and had safety hazards, Kennedy said.
“There were holes in the tile that you could see through to the main foundation,” Kennedy said. “The carpet was still wet and it smelled like dog pee and wet dog. There was a hole in the screen door so the mosquitoes that were outside were actually getting into the living room and mosquitoes really like wet environments so they were in the carpet.”
In the bedroom, Kennedy said some walls needed patching and electrical outlets were without plates. In the bathroom, the toilet wasn’t secured to the floor and expanding foam was used to fill nooks and crannies.
“We got really frustrated, obviously,” Kennedy said. “We called Frontier and they told us that it was deemed to be move-in ready and that there wasn’t much that they could do about the floors, because they had suggested to the owners of the property that they should replace the floors, but they decided to not go through with it.”
Moss then called Frontier and went to their main office. At that point, he says, Frontier said no one had stepped foot in the house in two years.
“They had no idea the condition of it,” Kennedy said. “I was like, ‘Well, you obviously cannot make decisions on this house if you have not seen this condition because it’s horrible.’”
Then, the couple says, Frontier leasing director Cayle Hubert visited the property with the couple. After seeing the property conditions, Frontier let Moss and Kennedy out of their lease. They had been in the house for fewer than two hours.
However, the next day, Kennedy said getting their deposit and first month’s rent back was a struggle. Kennedy said Frontier made excuses, but after three weeks, Moss called Frontier and threatened to get an attorney. Only then did Frontier refund their $1,895, he said.
Representatives from Frontier were unavailable for comment on this story.
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This wasn’t the first bad experience the couple had with renting.
“I have had issues in the past from renting from American Property Services where they rushed us into a house that wasn’t ready for move-in,” Kennedy said.
The house the couple rented from Aug. 2019 to July 2020 through American Property Services had mold, rusted copper pipes, heating issues and trash and other items left in the garage from previous tenants, Kennedy said.
“They told us that, ‘Well, this house was built in the 1940s. What do you expect?’” Kennedy said.
American Property Services manages properties for over 200 owners, owner Dave Darling said in an email. Additionally, there are around 1,200 residents.
“We have a process in place prior to a resident signing a lease that tells them that we will fix anything that is health and safety-related,” Darling said. “If they have things beyond that, which they expect to be addressed, they should bring that to our attention before signing a lease so we know if we can meet that expectation. Believe it or not, some folks expect a property that’s 100 years old to look like it was just built, and that’s just not possible. We want to be upfront about what we can and cannot meet from an expectations standpoint.”
However, Moss and Kennedy said the trash in their garage should have been removed.
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“The day we moved in, they said they would move all the trash out of the garage,” Moss said. “They left the previous resident’s trash in our garage for six months and the only reason they finally got it is because I had to call and call and call until I got directly linked up with the owner of the company on the phone.”
Moss said the owner tried to pass the trash onto the new residents. When Moss threatened to get lawyers involved, he backed down and promised to have someone clean the garage.
“They sent like two random dudes in an unmarked car,” Moss said. “They came out and were like, ‘We’re here to clean your garage.’ I let them in, and … they took half the trash out. Then left the other half of the trash that is piled up in the corner, and was like ‘Yeah, that’s clean’ and then they left.”
Darling said the health and safety of residents are top priorities for American Property Services. However, Kennedy said, “They are rude and didn’t care.”