VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – Residents at the Waypoint at Lynnhaven complex are saying they can’t get back into their homes to get their belongings.
Residents got early lease termination notices on Friday. They were told that crews found asbestos while fixing damage caused by Hurricane Matthew. There was a feeling of uncertainty outside of a hotel at the Oceanfront on Sunday as some of those residents discussed what has happened over the last few days.
“It’s so hard. I’m thinking that I couldn’t realize what’s happened. I’m thinking that I’m dreaming. It for me is a dream,” says Fatimall Larbaoui, who lived at Waypoint for two years.
Many people were told they would spend some time in a hotel while crews cleaned up the apartment complex. So finding out that they have to find a new place to live, and possibly never get their belongings again, came as a shock.
“I couldn’t sleep on that time. I was crying, I didn’t believe it,” says Larbaoui.
On Sunday, 10 On Your Side sat down with residents who say they’ve been getting the run around from Kettler, the company that owns the property
“I can honestly say these last couple days since Friday has been very hard on me,” says Johvanny Torres, who has lived there for four years.
10 On Your Side spoke with a representative from Kettler. She says terminating the leases was a difficult decision, but they want to put the health and safety of the residents first. They are paying for hotel rooms for displaced residents until October 30, but couldn’t say what they will do for people past that point.
“It’s not easy because they released the notice on Friday, so they’ve got us stuck on a weekend pulling our hair out trying to figure out what can we do,” says Torres.
In a letter, the apartment company says that all ground-floor units were being evacuated and their leases terminated. Some of those units are contaminated, so people are not allowed to get their belongings. In other units, people have until 5 p.m. on Monday to get their belongings. The apartment company is refunding security deposits. But for some, that’s not enough.
“We have to start over and I have three kids and only my husband is working,” Larbaoui says.
Torres says he plans to meet with Councilwoman Shannon Kane on Monday to hopefully get the city involved. She was kicked off of the complex’s property yesterday while trying to help the residents.
Kettler says they want to work with her and the city, but at the time were focusing on residents.