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Brian F.

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Experience: Real Estate

Member since November 2014

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1 Review by Brian

Bal Harbour Tampa Bay


*Has-been 1985 condominiums that are flipped and not maintained.
*Extremely overpriced for age and no up keeping.
*Will not allow you to see what you are about to sign for
*Unprofessional dressed
*Extremely poor and lack of communication
*Rental agent companies will not even recommend them
*Giant banner out front on Belcher Rd stating (Condominiums for sale)
*Silk Wood management is a formed LLC of a bunch of rich investors
*There are still some original owners that are living there and or rent there property
*One bedroom is really a studio with a kitchenette and NO storage for anything.
*Beware when they say wooden floors! Ask if they are real because they are just vinyl
*You can get a NEW beautiful one bedroom never lived in before at Broadstone Clearwater for $1016 a month just a mile from this place including a full size washer and dryer.
*You can also get a fairly new two bedroom closer to the beach at BaySide Court for $1049 a month and that includes a full size washer and dryer and water.
*Units look NOTHING like the pictures on the web site, they are using the original clips from when it was all HOA and privately owned community.


Right from the start the communication was bad and that should have been my first clue, but I gave them the benefit of the doubt. Then when I told them I would fly in to see it, they said that is not possible as they rent out so fast. That was a lie.
First, they had one unit and then they did not, stringing be along as if they could care less. I was working with an independent company to help me find a place to live and they really did not have much to say about Bal Harbour until it was too late. Later, I found that they really do not like to deal with them due to the above (Express read). The independent company was trying to steer me away from them but I did not realize it at the time.
The Independent company called me and told me that they spoke to Ash*** (the Bal Harbour MANAGER) and was told they did not have anything until January 2015 for me. Amazingly, I was just told a few weeks ago that they had a place for me on 11-15-14 then that changed to 11-25-14 and now this! I had already started to pack and then had to stop because of the inconsistencies.
I immediately called Bal Harbour and Ama*** (The other leasing agent that I was dealing with) answered. I acted as if I was a random caller to check for availability and guess what? Surprise! They amazingly had more than one place, in fact they had the very same two places on and off for the last two months. After I told Ama*** who I was, she realized the conversation they all had with the independent rental agent about me that morning and suddenly after placing me on hold three times they had the one bedroom that was listed on their site.
After a few Q & A I told them I wanted to apply. Applying was a struggle at best as they did not reply to my email request, nor my voice mail request for a week. I went through the process and was told I was approved in an email and I started packing the second time and a few days later I got a call from Ash*** stating I was approved. I told her I was already informed via an email I was approved! (That should have been my second clue). Then this happened. I get another call from Ama*** and a separate call from Ash*** to tell me this (We are so excited to let you know that you apartment is being renovated and you are getting NEW HARDWOOD FLOORS except for the bedroom. I thought this was great as I am not a fan of carpet especially from another user and they knew that because I expressed my concern about it in the beginning.
OK! Now I pack my life and I made all arrangements to move 1,400 miles to Bal Harbour Largo FL (And if anyone has ever really moved you will understand all that is involved to do it).

During my journey, I would call and let them know where I was and the time I expect to be there as they were very clear to me that I HAD to be there on the 21st. Not once did I get a confirmation call in return.
I showed up as agreed at the approximate time and Ama*** and Ash*** seemed to have a shocked look on their faces. I introduced myself and Ama*** said she did not even have my papers ready. I waited as she printed off what she said was 50 pages. Ama*** then walks me to the rear of the (Office) and wants to start reviewing and have me sign. I stopped her and said I wanted to see my place before I sign and Ama*** said in a smart tone, (Well I am not going to go through all this twice, so you can go get something to eat or do what you have to do because the place is not ready). I said (Really! I just drove 1,400 miles and kept you all updated and its not ready?) So, I left and came back an hour later and it still was not ready. Ash*** tried her hand at getting me to sign the papers and I told her what I said to Ama***. So with that, it was small talk and about 2-1/2 hours have passed and I told Ash*** I had movers coming to help me off load my truck and I want to see my place. Ash*** was very reluctant to allow this but I insisted. So I was escorted to what I thought was going to be my new home. Here is where I became ill, literally.

The only way I can describe it is an efficiency apartment with a kitchenette that had about three cabinets. The closet off to the so called kitchen, did not even have a place to put one bottle of washing detergent and the bedroom area that Ash*** told me that you could easily fit a queen size bed along with a dresser and a desk was a lie, in fact I dont think I could even fit my bed in the area. The bathroom was so small that you could not even put a hamper in it. To add insult to Injury it was filthy dirty. The tub was stained with black marks and had mold all around the soap dish and there was not even a shower curtain rod. While inspecting the tiny place an army of their maintenance men were scrambling to paint the place (After I was told by Ama*** that they hire professional painters) and the walls were still wet and in spots appeared dirty with cobwebs in the ceiling lights (The ones that were not burnt out), The Microwave keypad was so thick with grease that Ash*** tried to tell me that it was the plastic coming off. I told her I was a trained cook and that is grease. She just looked at me and said (You cant expect us to replace everything new! And then I turned her attention to the so called Hardwood floors. Whats this! I asked, pointing at it! In addition, she said, those are your hardwood floors. I said this is not wood at all, its vinyl. Ash*** then said (I did not tell you Hardwood, I told you Hardwood soft) really I said! There is no such thing. We then had words back and forth, I told her I was lied to, and there is no way I could even fit my life in this place. Ash*** then did what I think was the intention all along and that was to upsell me to what I should have had to begin with. Magically there was a one bedroom (completely filthy I might add) that had the larger kitchen and shelfs in the washer and dryer area that was supposed to be what I was getting for $885 a month and she said this was the large den unit and it goes for $1016 a month. It also had the FAKE hardwood floors in it.

I should mention that about 3-1/2 years ago I looked at four different units of these condos with a Real Estate agent to purchase for a family member as an investment so I know very well what the Large Den unit looks like and this was not it. It appears what they are doing is using the original Bal Harbour web design and twisting the selling points and not showing you what you are really getting.

Ash*** then said she had to go, with absolutely no care in the world for what she just pulled off on me and Ama*** was instructed to have the second place cleaned up to show me in an hour. I came back and of course it was disgusting and smelled like cigarettes and I then realized that I have been had.

I also want to point out that since I moved my entire life to Bal Harbour Largo FL, that my mail already started showing up and Ama*** went into my mail box and removed my mail. This is a federal offence and I had to call the Largo police and Largo post office. I now have it in my possession with the Bal Harbour address on my bills because she gave it to me, if I never signed, then I would never have access to retrieve my mail, therefore they committed a federal offence.

I was without a place to live and had no choice but to return to the location I came from. I now have legal counsel and all there lies on email and will pursue what is needed to see that this does not happen to anyone ever again.

My advice to you, is to ignore what they will comment or reply (if at all) on this rating and trust me when I tell you this is the truth to the best of my recollection with the understanding I was under extreme duress.

Be careful, cover all your bases and NEVER sign unless you can see the exact apartment that you will be living in and that goes for any place. If they make excuses, then move on.

One more thing. Buyer beware! Remember that big sign out front on Belcher Rd that I mentioned?
The lease is HUGE and if they sell the condo they can make you get out even if you are in the middle of your contract. Do you really want to live like that? Not me

Good luck

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