Salem apartment tenants given 30 days to move

By Brie Jackson - Weekend Anchor / Reporter

SALEM (WSLS 10) - People in Salem are voicing concerns after being told to leave their homes.

There are plans in the works to renovate the building currently housing Chestnut Manor residents. Tenants said this week they received a termination of lease notice stating that they must move out by the end of November.

The decision has people scrambling to find a place to live.

"Thirty days to try to find a place in Salem is absolutely ridiculous," said Kevin McCarthy, a Chestnut Manor resident.

The notices arrived as the 40-unit building is now under contract. Clay Taylor, with Waldvogel Commercial Properties, who is handling the sale of the property, said the buyer is a very strong, local player in the real estate market who plans to use historic tax credits for major renovations.

"We are talking about a full overhaul of all the HVAC, all the plumbing systems", said Taylor. "So this is not something that can be done unit by unit. It's going to be gutted from the inside out and redone."

The buyer wants to begin construction as soon as possible and the space would be unlivable, according to Taylor.

He said the details of the sale were being finalized when the termination letters were delivered.

Douglas Wilson Jr., a lawyer representing the seller, said the vast majority of people staying at Chestnut Manor are on a month-to-month lease.

Under Virginia law, the landlord is required to give a 30-day notice on month-to-month agreements, but residents said the notice is not enough time to move.

"We should at least have two to three months to move out of here," said Lewis Flowers, Chestnut Manor resident.

Wilson said they will make every effort to help those with leases longer than one month and hope to see all sides reach a fair agreement. Flowers and other residents hope the new owners listen to their concerns and give them more time to find a new place to call home.

The sale is between private individuals and does not involve the city of Salem; however, city leaders say they understand both sides.

They said renovations at the property are needed. Officials said the Economic Development Office has supplied a list of eight apartment complexes in Salem and Roanoke that are in a similar price range as the Chestnut Manor apartments.

City leaders said that while it is never good when anyone has to unexpectedly move, they are glad the property will be getting the much needed renovation and rehabilitation that it deserves.

Here is a list of resources being offered to help Chestnut Manor residents relocate offered by Waldvogel Commercial Properties :

Area Apartments:

Ashton Height Apartments...……………………...………….……...540-345-9325

Caroline Forest Apartments...……………………………….……….540-387-2193

Fairington of Roanoke Apartments………………………….....…….540-989-7731

Landsdowne Apartments…………………..…………………...……540-983-9282

Lee Hy Manor Apartments…………………………………….....….540-774-4673

Northview Apartments………………………………………...…..…844-622-8061

Salem Commons Apartments……………………………........……...844-737-9691

Stafford Village Apartments……………………………...…......…...540-774-4673

Westwood Village Apartments……………………………….……...540-343-8356

Senior Housing

Melrose Towers…………………………………...............................540- 983-9249

Ridgecrest at Richfield…………………………………….……..…..540-380-4500

Roanoke Redevelopment & Housing Authority….…………………..540-983-9281

Roanoke Valley Properties…………………………………………...540-354-5565

Rent/Relocation Assistance

Presbyterian Community Center, Inc………………………………...540-982-2911

Homeless Assistance Team…………………………………………..540-853-1715

Restoration Church (Salem)………………………………………….540-384-1601

Additional Resources

Community Housing Resource Center……………………………….540-266-7558

HUD Housing Counseling……………………………………………800-569-4287

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