Harvard Manor Apartments
Resident • 2006 - 2008 Not Recommended
The only good thing of this place is the lower rent as compared to the neighboring apartments of the monopoly: Irvine company. From outside, this apartment complex also looks very nice. But soon you will find why their rent is low even the apartments are so close to UCI. This is the first voluntary web review in my life. I felt obliged to do so and like to contribute to future tenants. In fact, this might be the only place for us to dispute the bad landlord. They are much powerful than us and they have credit collecting agency, they have power, they have money. But for poor tenants, sometimes we have to accept some unfair things because we don t have money and energy to fight with the powerful landlords. 1. My stories:  I got warned from my colleague (a postdoc from India) that their apartment is crappy. The sink and toilet can be easily blocked. However, I thought that might be true only for his particular apartment.  On the day I was signing a lease in their office, the manager was talking on the phone to a former tenant, saying that the carpet has to be replaced and therefore no deposit would be returned. I thought I was lucky to get this free lesson and therefore tried to keep my carpet clean. Unfortunately, I could not do so because I have kids. The worst thing is that the carpet(part of it) got flooded twice. I hired some professionals from outside to clean my carpet ($60) and I also put on the vinyl flooring (~$150) keep the carpet clean. Finally, around two weeks after I moved out of that building, I got a letter from them, saying the carpet has to be replaced with a cost of $560. Together with other cleaning fees (no details given to me), I owe them around $780. They threatened that was the only letter sent, and if I did not pay them within a week, they will report to credit collecting agencies. OK, what to do next. I really don t have energy and money to dispute this. So I surrendered and paid all the money. Finally I got some comfort : from the secretary, saying others also pay this . This suggested they treated their tenant in a fair way. So the exact same story happened two years ago occurred to me two years latter. It might be unfair to say all the carpets from all tenants have to be replaced. But they really have ways to take all your deposit away (see below). If you really want to rent their apartment, better ask for a statistics on what percent of deposit of tenants get paid back. Please don t believe what they are saying, asking for real data (hard copies).  Here is a picture how sink blocked. Sometimes it is not your sink blocked but somewhere downstairs got blocked. So the water coming down from the upstairs overflow your kitchen and flood your apartment. The even worse case is that they sometimes can not handle this big blocking and they have to ask professionals from outside. This takes a week to fix.  Maintenance requests were responded very slow. Four sliding doors on the cabinet, windows do not working properly and tend to slide out of their tracks. Even if they finally came and fixed the problem, the same problems happened a little bit later. Sometimes it was a bit unfair to blame those workers, because the old worn-out doors are really hard to fix unless replaced with new ones. So the only thing is to suffer and don't ask for maintenance anymore.  For some not emergent problems, they even choose not to respond. The1996 refrigerator in my apartment becomes so bad and does not generate code efficiently. If it does generate heat, it gives big noise. I asked maintenance and for a week and got no response. They responded only later when the machine becomes completely bad and do not generate any code any more. Then they replace the 1996 refrigerator with another old one and I lost boxes of food.  Their building contains some materials can cause cancer. They put some notes on their walls as requested by law. However, you got to know this only after you moved in. 2. My neighbors (friends ) stories.  [A] My upstairs neighbor (my colleague also) stayed in the apartment for 4 to 5 years (not sure about the exact time period). He finally moved out the apartment because his maintenance request for the refrigerator (water leaking) has not been responded for a year. He was not so lucky as me because my refrigerator completely comes down and can not be used anymore. Thus finally I got my refrigerator replaced with at least an old one. But his requests have not been responded for a year. [B] Of course, when somewhere got blocked (we even don t know where), he can not use water any more, otherwise, their water will flood my apartment. The funny thing is: when something got blocked, Harvard Manor asked me to tell my upstairs neighbor to stop use the sink. [C] I have not asked him about whether the carpet in his apartment was replaced and whether he had paid the extra money for this. I only know that his deposit was also forfeited by Harvard Manor. This is so understandable, because Harvard Manor assumes their apartment should not be worn out for any extent and should be kept as the original status even after 4 and 5 years of tenant occupation.  I also have two friends in the 2nd floor. One of them stayed in Harvard Manor for one year. He was luckier than me because Harvard Manor did not charge all his deposit of $400, but only charge him $397, and have been kindly asked do you want the remaining three dollars back? . The other friend is still living there and therefore I don t know any stories about the deposit . He has been treated nicely, I think, because Harvard Manor sometimes really need tenants, especially in off seasons. They reduce my friend s rent by $100, and no lease required. The only bad thing is that within the first month after he moved in, his apartment got flooded. This time is not flooded by dirty water as in my apartment, but flooded with hot water. This happened at midnight and he called me to help him. 3. Suggestions  If you really like their lower rent and have to rent their apartment for whatever reason, be sure to check everything (such as dish-washing machine, oven) very carefully in the first week. If something is wrong, keep asking for maintenance. Otherwise, it will be your problem when you moved out. For anything not clean, report them in the sheet. Otherwise, they will charge you for whatever fees in terms of cleaning. The more you put on the sheet, the better to you.  If you have your relatives visit you in the apartment, you must report this to them and ask for their permission. Otherwise, they will use this as excuse to punish you. If you have your room over occupied , they can even kick you out.  If you are very sensitive to noise, do not rent their apartment because the noise level there is very high as they located in the corner of two streets. In the early morning, the big truck from Albertson and the fire department 200 meters will always generate a lot of noise. Particularly, if you kids who are very young and can not discipline themselves from walking fast , or even running on the floor, do not rent this apartment, because you will get in trouble for disturbing others.
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