Longtime apartment residents face eviction after years of residency

Some longtime residents in a Laurel apartment complex face eviction after years of living there.
Published: Nov. 10, 2021 at 10:14 PM CST
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LAUREL, Miss. (WDAM) - Some longtime residents in a Laurel apartment complex face eviction after years of living there.

81-year-old Ted Williams has lived at the Normandy Manor Apartments for 15 years. Four weeks ago, received a letter from apartment management.

It says the complex will not renew its participation in a government-assisted rent payment program and current residents must reapply to stay at Normandy Manor.

Williams says he tried to explain he could pay the full rent with help from his son, but was turned away.

When asked if he had ever been late on any of his rent payments, Williams replied, “No ma’am.”

“My income wasn’t enough to stay here,” Williams said.

60-year-old Debbie Pool is another long-term tenant who received the letter.

“It blows me away. Like I’m really heartbroken for I don’t even know how many people has gotten a letter like my mom has got,” says Pool’s daughter, Amanda Pilgram.

Pilgram spoke on Pool’s behalf because of health issues Pool is currently facing.

“She called me as soon as she read it and was just like so, so upset,” Pilgram said. “And that is kind of contributing to what she’s actually dealing with right now because she’s already having health issues, and actually, while we’re speaking, she’s in the hospital getting tended to. So this situation did not help her at all. If anything, it made it worse.”

Both Williams and Pool are having a difficult time finding new places that accept government assistance.

“Anybody that has any knowledge of apartments or live-in apartments know you have like everyone has at least six months to a year wait or longer, especially when it’s dealing with HUD. Because I have literally called every apartment complex in Laurel and Ellisville and even the closer areas of Hattiesburg from here and they all have at least like six to eight-month wait period,” Pilgram said.

Leaving them with uncertainty as their leases come to a close.

“I don’t know. I can’t find nowhere. I hadn’t yet,” said Williams.

Normandy Manor Apartments officials declined to comment on the matter.

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