Absentee owners to blame for run down apartments - CBS46 News

Absentee owners to blame for run down apartments

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DEKALB COUNTY, GA (CBS46) -

CBS46 uncovered new information about who may be responsible for a deplorable apartment complex in metro Atlanta.

Victoria Matthews has lived at the Walden Pond Apartments in Decatur for the past 12 years.

“The condominiums are not kept up because you’ve got absentee owners,” Matthews said.

Matthews said she is the only owner who lives at the complex. She owns two apartments and does her part to keep them up to code.

“It’s unsanitary, it’s unsafe and the homeowners need to take care of their properties. They really do, that’s the bottom line,” Matthews said.

A CBS46 investigation found that there are multiple owners at Walden Pond. Plus, tax records show that most of the units are owned by either Lakeside of DeKalb or Steve Astrin.

“Those two major homeowners are not budging to do anything. They don’t care,” Matthews said.

CBS46 went to Steve Astrin’s business in Conyers to get the lowdown. A woman said he was out of the office until Tuesday, but we did see a couple of maintenance men at Walden Pond who said they worked for Astrin.

“He never comes over here. He doesn’t know what’s going on. He’s got people that work for him. They come over and do a little bit here and there and they’re gone,” Matthews said.

As for Lakeside of DeKalb, they’re responsible for many of the other deplorable apartments. However, they only list a P.O. Box in Conyers and Matthews said the woman behind the company lives in another state.

“I would just love to see the code enforcement, or whomever it is, step to the plate and get their units in order. I don’t want these units condemned because this is my home,” Matthews said.

CBS46 spoke with DeKalb County Code Enforcement about the mess and they said they’ve been involved with Walden Pond for several years to no avail, but there is a case scheduled for next week.

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