Sanctuary of Lake Villa
Resident · 2011 - 2012
My experience with the Sanctuary was an overall good one. My wife and I lived there for one year and were pleased with our stay there. There were four minor complaints we have, and one more on the "major" side. Minor 1: Last summer, the pool seemed to be closed a lot. It was a little disappointing because I felt like every time I wanted to go to the pool, there was something going on. Minor 2: The mailbox slots are too small for any non-regulation letter. You can send fun-sized and legal-sized letters with no problem, but if you get a card from Hallmark or Target or wherever, you probably won't be able to fit that sucker into the mail slot, so you'll need to go to the post office. Minor 3: We lived on the third floor and it got boiling hot outside our apartment. There are windows leading up to the third-floor hallway that don't open, preventing any ventilation from happening. As a result, the hallways and stairways are brutally hot in the summer, and made it unbearable moving in and out. Minor 4: There are no walkways anywhere near the apartment complex. If you have a dog, plan on having to drive them in order to take them on walks, unless you want to just walk in circles in the library parking lot. If you have a kid growing up, the environment isn't great for them either: there's nowhere to ride their bikes (unless you want your kid riding next to Grand Avenue traffic), and they have to play in the streets if they want to be outside. Major: My biggest problem with the Sanctuary is the lack of flexibility from the owner of the complex. The staff are great and very friendly; it's their boss that you'll never meet in person that I had a problem with. My wife and I were in a situation where we wanted to renew our lease for six months instead of a year; we were told that our request would need to get approved by the owner (and that he probably wouldn't approve it), and even if he did approve it, then we would lose all concessions and pay an extra fee for the six months we lived there (an increase of $400 or $500 from our normal rent). To me, this is unreasonable and is unkind to the patrons who have spent good money on this owner's complex. Later, my wife and I were in a situation where we were supposed to move into a house, and our deal fell through. I asked if we could have a two-day or even a one-day extension on our lease while we found a place to move, and were told that extensions that short aren't available. Again, this is disappointing customer service. As a result, my wife and I are homeless right now. We have been guests in other peoples' homes, sleeping on futons and couches while all of our stuff is sitting in a rental truck (where we're spending $100 a day because we have nowhere to put it right now) while we figure out where we're moving next. Any owner who understands customer service should never deny a family a short extension, especially when you consider how much time they'll have to clean the place even if they lose a day. Instead of renting us out another day and making our stay a 5-star experience, the owner sacrificed our needs for his own wants. I don't mean to leave this on a negative note, because even though the owner values his own satisfaction over customers' satisfaction, my wife and I enjoyed our time at the Sanctuary and have lots of great memories there. The staff are good, maintenance workers respond immediately to requests and are efficient and friendly, and there it's a decent community to live in for people without children or dogs. We'd recommend it to others, as long as they understand the owner isn't flexible. Thanks for a good year.