SAN JOSE (KPIX 5) – Renters at a San Jose apartment complex accuse their landlord of not fixing conditions they call unlivable, but their landlord said tenants were exaggerating. KPIX 5 was invited inside.
In Dan Fiorenza’s apartment, the cockroaches came from everywhere. Despite the numerous cans of Raid and roach traps, Fiorenza said every unit in his complex is infested.
And that’s not all. Tenants said there’s mold and unfinished flooring. One tenant showed KPIX 5 a video she recorded to prove her unit is infested with mice.
“It’s quality of life, you know?” Fiorenza told KPIX 5. “You can’t live like that, paying that kind of money.”
Several renters, including Fiorenza, said landlord Michael Lucich has never paid for an exterminator.
At least one renter also claims Lucich broke a new law that said property owners can’t raise rents more than 5 percent, when he increased her rent from $1,550 to $1,900.
“He did the sneakiest thing a person could possibly do,” Fiorenza said.
Fiorenza claims Lucich evicted him for now reason before a new law was passed that said landlords can’t evict without “just cause.” The tenant claimed Lucich knew he couldn’t afford to move with such short notice.
“And he knew it. And so he says ‘Well, I’ll let you stay here, but you have to come in as a new tenant.’ It was suspiciously close to the ordinance passing,” Fiorenza said.
Fiorenza said his rent went up from $1,850 to $2,200.
Lucich declined an on-camera interview and claims “everything is fine at his complex.” The landlord lives in a Los Gatos home.
“I’m done,” Fiorenza said. “If you evict me, so what? I can take my $2,200 and go somewhere else that isn’t cockroach infested.”