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Nutley Gardens Apartments



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HoovHFrank • Resident 1990 - 2007 Not Recommended
Reviewed 02/25/2005
(NUTLEY PROPERTIES APARTMENTS)<br><br>My wife and I moved to Nutley Properties Apartments over fifteen years ago when the complex looked decent, management was friendly, and the quality of life was good. We now find it necessary to leave because of the declining condition of the apartments, the disingenuous behavior of the management and maintenance staff, and harassment by emotionally disturbed children being warehoused here by D.Y.F.S. <br><br>APARTMENT COMPLEX - The exterior of the apartments are showing the ravages of time, and the interiors exhibit years of hard use: <br>>There is no air conditioning, you will have to purchase your own window units.<br>>The wiring is so old the building inspector only allows 15 amp fuses in the circuit breaker, the standard is 30 to 100 amps. <br>>The walls and ceilings have very bad cracks that cannot be permanently repaired, the rotting plaster easily chips and peels.<br>>The walls are uneven and bumpy making it difficult to hang pictures.<br>>The hot and cold water pressure drastically fluctuates resulting in uncomfortable showers.<br>>The wooden floors are old and noisy.<br>>There is no soundproofing and the noise from your neighbors can be maddening.<br>>Closets are very small, no walk-ins.<br>>No ventilation fan in the kitchen, cooking odors permeate throughout the apartment for hours. <br>>The water and sewage pipes are in a progressive state of disintegration, maintenance is continuously entering apartments to repair and replace them.<br>>The hot water supply is not reliable, I have taken many a cold shower. The boilers are alomost 60 years old and are forever breaking down.<br>>There is no assigned parking, and there are many more cars then there are spaces. Prepare to get ticketed or towed. <br>>Squirrels run amok above the ceilings of the second floor apartments, and there have been outbreaks of roach infestation.<br>>The apartments were built following WW II and the exterior brick facade is dirty with ugly streaks of black and white paint bleeding from painted surfaces.<br>>There are decorative window shutters on some windows and not others.<br>>The grounds display years of abuse and lack of professional care. When shrubs die they are never replaced. Some tenants are so disgusted with the looks of the complex they have planted their own flowers and shrubs.<br>>The rent now increases every year at a rate of 5%. My current rent, as of October 2006, is $1,387.00 per month for a 2 bedroom unit (578 sq. feet).<br>Special Note: The windows and entry doors have been replaced, giving the complex a much needed facelift. However, "you can put lipstick on a pig, but it is still a pig". <br><br>MANAGEMENT - The attitudes of the new manager, superintendent, and maintenance crew mirrors the declining state of Nutley Properties. The new personnel are not customer friendly, unless you are of the same ethnic background, and can become hostile if you do not acquiesce to their behavioral quirks. Also, management thinks nothing of engaging in deceitful behavior - their business ethics aren't much different from that of a used car salesman. <br><br>APARTMENT LIVING - At one time people moved in and stayed, now it is a revolving door. Because of our proximity to New York we have become very multicultural, fostering both interesting and conflicting lifestyles. We have also become inundated with rude, obnoxious, inconsiderate, and violently aggressive people from the mean streets of nearby cities. The community ambiance that once flourished has long vanished!<br><br>Over the past several years D.Y.F.S. (N.J. Division of Youth and Family Services - rated the worst state run agency in the country and currently under Federal Court oversite) has been clandestinely placing emotionally and behaviorally disturbed children with individuals and families in the complex. D.Y.F.S. has been under attack for many years because of inept management (a September 2005 Legislative report states that, "D.Y.F.S. is in chaos"), and the placement of mentally disturbed children in apartments is just another example of their ongoing incompetence. Apartment living is the worst possible setting for these children, since it only exacerbates their condition (constant exposure to different people and noises creates a highly toxic environment for these kids), they should be housed in detached homes or group facilities. To make matters worse D.Y.F.S., in its frenzied quest to meet a Federally mandated deadline, is placing these disturbed youths with undesirable guardians. <br>In the Fall of 2004 it contracted with Youth Consultation Service, a private organization, to do the work it is incapable of performing (your tax dollars at work!), and the results are reflected in the mess that has been created at Nutley Properties. <br>My daughter, a special education teacher, investigated this situation and discovered some disturbing information:<br>>There are children living here who have a Neurobehavioral Disorder ("a life-long develpmental disability that manifests itself by problems with learning, social, emotional, or behavioral disorders due to a brain malfunction", National Mental Health Association). Unable to communicate and form social relationships, many develop antisocial behavior which they cunningly direct at unsuspecting tenants - once they develop an unhealthy fixation on someone they will relentlessly torment and stalk them. <br>Of course not all of these children are a social menace, and some are actually quite amiable, but the ones who do have a primal mean streak can make life very uncomfortable.<br>>When agitated or overstimulated, they are prone to aggressive or violent behavior, destroying property, and setting fires. They have no conception of right from wrong, and could care less about the consequences of their actions. Also, it is not unusual for them to get physically abusive with their caregivers. <br>>Some of the kids go to special education schools while the rest are warehoused in the apartments 24 hours a day. <br>>They are painfully sensitive to the sound of footsteps, voices, doors closing, phones ringing, vacuum cleaners, running water, door bells, etc. The resulting stress will lead them to incessantly follow you from room-to-room banging on the walls and ceilings, slamming doors, stomping, loudly playing a radio, and distorting the flow of your hot and cold water by manipulating their access (I have taken a counter measure which has eliminated this problem for me). If you have guests, especially with children or a crying baby, they will start bouncing off the wall - their tantrums are intense. The harassment is neverending, and will continue as long as there is someone moving around in the apartment.<br>It amazes me that D.Y.F.S. and Nutley Properties Management expects tenants to sacrifice their quality of life to accommodate the hate acts these children are compelled to inflict. Statistics show that only five to ten percent of these kids will ever develop into self-reliant adults, most will eventually languish in shelters while the rest become social misfits or criminals; yet tenants are expected to quietly accept their abuse for the good of society, but then again, maybe its for the benefit of these worthless caseworkers and caregivers. It's very difficult to have any compassion when you are the one on the receiving end of their dysfunctional behavior.<br>>They will tolerate only a select few entering their space, and will go ballistic if anyone else gets too close. If approached outdoors they may also try to hide, or turn away so you do not look into their eyes. Usually these kids carefully dash about the complex in such a manner that visual contact is not obvious; however, there are times when their presence is evident, especially on summer nights when they venture out of doors wearing a "hoodie" in 90 degree weather. <br>>They have sleep disorders which keep them from resting for more than a couple of hours in a 24 hour period. The caregivers allow them to use the bedroom directly under yours for their all night harassment which includes loud tv's and radios, stomping, banging on walls and ceilings, sqreaming, etc. Needless to say, it is a struggle just to get a couple of hours of sleep at night.<br>>Identifying these children can be difficult, since many of them quietly scurry about with the assistance of their caregivers and others (The National Institute of Mental Health states, "Because the child is so inflexible, and could inflict physical harm, the caregivers frequently get sucked into assisting these kids with their dirty deeds"). Their lack of concern for the children, as well as the tenants, becomes glaringly obvious when the disturbed children are left alone for hours at a time, are allowed to harass the tenants, or are used to exact revenge on people the caregivers don't like.<br>Personal Example: one of these children lived with a family below me for two years, then, the caregivers packed-up and abandoned the boy. One of the maintenance workers was suppose to take him in, but instead, took checks from D.Y.F.S. while allowing the boy to remain alone in the empty apartment betweem August and November of 2004 (the worker has since moved on). The only time the boy left the dwelling was in the morning hours between 6am and 7am, and returned about 1 hour later. When tenants reported him crawling in and out of windows, managment's response was that of indifference. When I reported the boy to managment they claimed he was not down there, and then suggested that it was my imagination. The child is still downstairs, but now, with another D.Y.F.S. sponsored family, and a mentally disturbed boy they brought with them. <br>When I notified D.Y.F.S. about the young boy living in the empty apartment they immediately met with the apartment manager, and then me. Our meeting began with the D.Y.F.S. representative defending the apartment manager. I found this action rather bizarre, since I had not yet given my account of the situation, so I questioned her defense - she quickly aborted the effort. When we finished I was informed that the matter would be looked into, however, the empty apartment was never viewed, no record was made of my statement, and I never heard from anyone at D.Y.F.S. again.<br>>The foster caregivers in this complex are usually low income minorities, whose only interest is in collecting a paycheck from D.Y.F.S. (some actually make out very well, receiving as much as $1,500 a month per child, plus clothing allowance, plus medical coverage). These children have really begun to spook some of the tenants, and when a couple of us approached D.Y.F.S. and Nutley Properties with our concerns both organizations were very evasive and intimidating (after meeting with D.Y.F.S. representatives I began to wonder if the organization wasn't just a jobs program for welfare recipients). They are trying their hardest to keep this under wraps, but awareness is growing (between May and October of 2005 D.Y.F.S./Y.C.S. caseworkers were seen walking around the complex with management, and entering/leaving apartments; yet, both parties claim they have no knowledge of these children). It is now evident that management is partnering with D.Y.F.S./Y.C.S. at the expense of the tenants.<br>These clueless caseworkers are too ignorant to care about the taxpayers right to quality of life, and the manager-leasing agent is only interested in earning commissions on the rentals (For an expanded review go to the heading: "The D.Y.F.S. Connection" at RenterRage.blogspot.com). <br><br>CRIME - I am not aware of any noteworthy crimes occurring in the complex over the past fifteen years. However, the Nutley area has recently experienced a significant increase in robberies, homicides, burglaries, assaults, gang violence, and drug sales. For example, the Star-Ledger reported that between January 2nd and 5th 2007 three businesses, within walking distance of the complex, were robbed at gunpoint. <br>Trouble can be seen on the horizon with "------ Kids" moving up the road from Newark, bringing with them all the elements associated with urban decay (According to Wikipedia: Newark currently has more gang violence per capita than any other city in the country). <br>The neighboring Town of Belleville is already experiencing an alarming surge in criminal activity, and random assaults by hoodlums is becoming commonplace. Belleville was once perceived as an invisible wall between Newark and Nutley, but the parapet has been breached and the hordes are advancing.<br>On 11/18/05 the mayor of Nutley announced the formation of a emergency task force to study the recent appearance of violent gangs in the community; law enforcement is especially alarmed at the presence of the Latin Kings, Crips, Bloods, Dynasty, and Neta. It won't be long before the social landscape of this charming town takes on an inner city appearance.<br><br>TO SUM UP - Nutley Properties is no longer a desirable place to live. The tenant mix is much different from what it was in the late 1990's, the buildings and apartment units are no longer appealing, management and maintenance have brought with them a third world demeanor, crime in Nutley is on the rise, and D.Y.F.S. is using the complex as a dumping ground for hard-to-place children with dysfunctional behavior.<br><br>You can't say you were not warned!<br><br> <br> <br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
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