Columbia, SC (WLTX) -- One month ago, News 19 brought you the story of a downtown apartment complex plagued with code violations.
A home health care aid reached out to us about deplorable living conditions inside the Wardlaw Apartments, a campus advertising as an "active senior community". Most who live at the complex are on a fixed income.
Among the code violations at the Wardlaw Apartments off Elmwood Avenue was the mold. It was so severe, officials told the owners of the complex, United Management Services of Columbia, LLC, they must fix the problem within 30 days or face the consequences.
Since our first report a month ago, we learned code inspectors from the Columbia Police Department and from the Columbia Housing Authority spent multiple days at the apartments checking units.
Tenants tell us work began shortly after with maintenance crews working to repair the water leaks around the property, and knocking down walls to fix the mold problem.
A spokeswoman for the Columbia Police Department tells us code enforcement conducted a joint, multi-department life safety inspection of all units July 2. Prior to that inspection, the property managers were required to have mold surveys done on all apartments. With the exception of one, all other reports came back as negative, or "no serious threat". The sole unit required remediation from a mold company.
The owners of the apartment complex have been put on notice to make all repairs in a timely manner, while providing code enforcement with progress reports. Management must also conduct monthly mold surveys until they are in compliance.
Tenants also tell us many are receiving new, working appliances, and some residents are being placed in hotels while maintenance crews clean the mold.
Within the last month, in every attempt to reach United Management Services of Columbia to get their side of the story, they either didn't return our calls, or they declined.