After searching for a dorm for my son to live in, we found Campus Habitat. The pictures on line looked like a great place to live. We signed a lease on line and were told we could move in 8/20/11. The online monthly rent was for $359.00 a month for a furnished apartment. It was a special they were running. When we got the lease papers the monthly rate was $399.00 a month. I called and spoke with Erin who told me she couldn't do anything about it. I demanded to speak to the manager and spoke to Mark Desalle. I explained the situation to Mark, and after much arguing he did change my lease papers to $359.00 per month.
We arived on 8/21/11 and went to the leasing office. We were given a key told they don't accept cash or checks. I explained I only had a check so they said okay. I wrote the check for the agreed upon amount ($359.00) and was told the rent was $399.00. We were quickly ushered into Mark Desalle's office who assured us our rent would be $359.00, but it would not be pro rated for the month. We thought this was very strange but by this point we were exhausted from traveling 5 states and anxious to get our son set up for school.
The outside of the complex is very nice, making the place very deceiving. Once we stepped into the apartments we were horrified! They had not been cleaned, there was previous tenants bathroom supplies in the drawers. I don't think I have ever been in any place filthier then this. And to top it off they were not furnished. The 2 other tenants and their parents were in as much shock as us.
We called down to the office and asked for Mark Hamilton (marketing manager) to come and look at this apartment. He said he would be right up. We waited 45 minutes and no Mark nor a phone call. My husband and I went down to the office to see if someone could come and look at this mess. As we were explaining the situation to the receptionist Mark Hamilton came BUSTING out of his office screaming at us that he is well aware of the problem and there's nothing he can do, he doesn't have cleaning crews that work on Sundays and he doesn't appreciate getting 4 phone calls about the same problem. We were not impressed with his unprofessional ism or rudeness, as we had only called him once.
We went back to the apartment and decided to clean the place on our own. We had 3 college kids and 5 adults cleaning. We spent $302.00 on cleaning supplies and spent 13 hours cleaning. We were never able to get the concrete out of the carpet but we tried.
The next day being Monday, we went in and spoke with Mark Desalle the manager at 9:00 a.m. Mark told us he would get furniture and someone was on their way to clean it. We waited all day to see if this would happen. What a surprise, we never saw a cleaning crew or any furniture.
After speaking with the kids who work for campus habitat this is what we found out. The kids work 80 hours a week and get there rent for free. This works out to roughly $5.00 an hour. What a great deal for campus habitat, they don't have to pay any taxes on these kids. The kids told us that Chris, who works in the office was giving rooms to tenants that were suppose to get non furnished rooms but then changed their minds and wanted furnished rooms, so by the time we got there, they had no furniture left.
Mark Desalle assured me furniture was on the way, but the kids said they didn't even have any cleaning supplies, since corporate hadn't sent any. Oh and I tried to reach corporate in NY but conveniently they have no phone numbers. Ryan, I believe he is the maintenance manager (just a college kid himself) let us go through his apartment and take what little furniture he had. We then scavenged through the piles of broken furniture by the dumpsters to see what we could salvage. We ended up putting together an apartment for the kids. This is not the way I expected to send my son off to college.
To top things off the check I wrote for $359.00 was ran through an automated clearing house in the amount of $435.00. I called and was put through to Mark Hamilton, (this person should not allowed to speak to the public) I told him what had happened and he said it was my banks fault. I know better then that, but since it was Sunday I said fine, I will call my bank first thing Monday morning. I called my bank and sure enough Campus Habitat ran my $359.00 check through as $435.00. I called and spoke to Erin the receptionist and demanded to speak to Mark Desalle. He said he wasn't in, but once I explained my situation and the steps I would be taking I was told Mark would be in the office shortly and would call me.
Mark did in fact call me and said it was his mistake and that my son would have a credit for the following month. Oh and to top it off, he was still working on getting furniture. Mark Desalle does seem to try to smooth things over, but I would not recommend this place to any college students. The place is very deceiving. The other parents we spoke to had the exact same problems we did as far as cleaning and no furniture. Please check out the bbb and facebook if you have any doubts. We met 4 kids who live in the dorms at the University of Wyoming last year and switched to Campus Habitat this year, they said they would never do it again that the school dorms were better then this.