July 31, 2012 - 4 comments

An Open Letter to Virginia Lee Properties

I haven't rented from a whole lot of places in my life, but Virginia Lee Properties has to be the worst. So here is an open letter for all to see how wonderful this company is.

Below that are the emails that led up to it as well. I will provide any updates as they occur.

Background: Our lease ends tomorrow. I'm in Chicago and had to send my key from here.

Dear Brittany & Virginia Lee Properties,

It's real shame that you guys at Virginia Lee Properties seem to be unable to have any sense of human understanding or consideration. I'm pretty sure we've been excellent tenants the past year (with the exception of 1 late fee because your office wasn't open during stated office hours). The apartment is in better shape than we received it in. Especially since all the other tenants in that building like to party, have band practice at 11pm, trash things, and smoke weed all day.  It's sad when a place has to nickle and dime their tenants just so they can a make a little extra money. It comes as no surprise that when I look you up on the internet there is nothing but bad review after bad review.
It's strange that when we had a problems, it took days or weeks to be addressed (often times with a reminder), yet when you needed something from us, a notice was posted on our door almost immediately. Even funnier is that we had been told on two occasions that the apartment was going to be re-keyed, yet it never was. Which makes me wonder if it will actually be re-keyed at all.
There was also that time when there was a dead mouse under our oven and you told me to my face that it would be taken care of that day. Yet it was another 5 days before that was taken care of.
Oh and then there was that time when we called you because our heat still wasn't on when it dropped to 40 degrees in our apartment in November (I could see my breath inside, it was crazy!). You said it had already been turned on. It definitely had not, and even I know how to work a radiator. So we called you again two days later, and you said it had just been turned on (again it hadn't been, but luckily by that evening it magically had been). Weird how that works.
(Side note: Water was included in, and the heat was radiator heat. So, the longer they can keep the heat off and not heat the building water, the more money they save...is my guess.)
The list of problems goes on and on.
Now I'm sure you don't really care about any of this. And I'm sure you receive these types of emails on a regular basis. But what else is there to do but give you one more to read?
For your reference, here is the FedEx tracking number (468603815066782) so you know that the key is on its way, and that a $100 fee for it arriving 2 days late is ridiculous and unnecessary.
Claiming it has to be re-keyed for incoming tenants is silly since you and your folks came and went as you pleased. So I'm sure there is another key around that can hold you over for 2 days. Of course, this is all just policy, and not your fault. It's true, I sent it a little late. But when you put it all into perspective, 2 days is really not a big deal.
You can forward all detailed papers and security deposits to my new address a few blocks away at:
801 N. Davis
Apt. 2A
Richmond, VA 23220
Take care,

These are the emails that came before this.

1st Email:

TO: Brittany M Burton <valee1@verizon.net>
SUBJECT: Key to be Delivered By FedEx

Hi Brittany,

My key to 203 N. Plum Street #5 is being delivered by FedEx to your office. It should arrive tomorrow, or the next day.
I have a tracking number for it, so if you would like that to confirm it has been sent then please let me know.
TO: nick(at)nickmarx.com
FROM: Brittany M Burton <valee1@verizon.net>
SUBJECT: Re: Key to be Delivered By FedEx
Unfortunately the keys had to all be returned by 12pm today, so there will be a charge for the re-keying as we will have to re-key in order to provide the new tenants with keys. The cost of that is $100.00, it will be noted in your move-out sheet along with any other charges (if applicable). Do you have a forwarding address for me to pass on to the bookkeeper?
Brittany M Burton
Virginia Lee Properties
 As you can see, we decided to move somewhere else. I'm somewhat curious as to the retention rate of their tenants. Anyone else out there have similar experiences?
Update: They then charged us for a variety of other cleaning fees totaling around $550 or so, many of which were not legally covered in the lease agreement. I don't think they liked my review of them on this blog and the letter I sent. Since I published it before they did the walk through.

Published by: Nick in Blog


Adam Hay
July 31, 2012 at 4:12 pm

Well thats quite interesting Mr. Nicholas Marx. I happen to know how to re-key a lock, dead bolts, pad locks (in some cases) and regular door locks. It takes anywhere from 2 minutes to 10 minutes depending on the complexity of it. Even if it is a double sided tumbler (teeth on both side of the keys, which I know yours isnt), it takes maybe 15 minutes. Lock smiths only charge about 20-40 dollars to do so, per lock. Places like home depot and lowes will often do it for free if you are a regular customer, much like most apartment complex handymans are. You can also get a kit online, for about 50 bucks online that can do quite a few locks. So im intrigued on why such a high rate…

Brenda Wei
January 15, 2013 at 1:45 am

Dear Nick,

After reading your unpleasant experiences at Virginia Lee Properties it made my day to see your great email to brittney and the owners. I am writing you to tell you my also very unpleasant experience with them.

First of all I don’t know how many maintaince requests I have put in but finally I have actually gotten a response only from calling the emergency maintaince line from Jeff (the maintaince man). This was the first time they have ever responded, probably because the ceiling caved in the kitchen…they really do know what’s important I guess.

Tomorrow they should be coming to fix that issue but we will see how that goes…

As far as Brittany, my gosh is she one rude property manager. I asked about having a dog in the apartment and she told me that only dogs 6 months and older are allowed brcause puppies will whine and cannot be bigger than 40 lbs. because im on the fifth floor…but wait a minute, there is the most annoying and mean yappy dog down the hallway and I have seen a golden doodle who lives on the 3rd floor that is pushing 80lbs…whatever

The only plus side is the location, that’s about it.

Oh yeah the elevator broke like 100times so far so I have gotten pretty used to using the stairs but what about my groceries?! Well I guess Brittany doesn’t give a damn about that…

Anyway thanks for shedding light onto this horrible renting experience, hopefully we can stick it out to the end of our lease.


    January 16, 2013 at 11:19 pm

    Hi Brenda,

    I’m sorry to hear about your situation. They are truly horrible. After I wrote this post (and sent it to them) the decided to charge me another $400 in cleaning fees (some were even against the lease contract) even though the place was cleaned out better then when we moved in.

    I’ve been meaning to update this post on it. Best I can do now is let people know that they’re horrible. You comment helps in that regard!

      August 29, 2013 at 11:52 am

      There’s a new Property Manager, Thank GOODNESS!!!

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