Bristol family blames landlord's lack of repairs for hardships - WFSB 3 Connecticut

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Bristol family blames landlord's lack of repairs for hardships

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(WFSB photo) (WFSB photo)
BRISTOL, CT (WFSB) -

A family kicked out of their condemned home said they’re on the verge of being homeless for a second time.

Eyewitness News has been following the story since around Christmas when the family said their landlord refused to make repairs.

That’s what led to the city of Bristol to condemn their home.

While many of the renters were able to find homes, the family said they’ve struggled.

Belynda Reidda said her uncle John and two children were forced to pack up and move out of their Taillon Street home because landlord Aljanaby Mohammad refused to keep it up to code.

“We did as much as we could,” she exclusively told Eyewitness News. “We kept talking to him and he was like, 'yeah, yeah, yeah,' but he never really got back to us.”

Since then, they’ve been in two Days Inn rooms. The city has been footing the bill and helping with the search for a new home.

However, with five family members and a dog, finding a three bedroom for under $900 has been difficult.

“More than half the places we've called want us to make at least three times the rent,” Reidda said.

As of Tuesday, they had one day left at the Days Inn.

“There's a teenager and a three year old to think about and we need to make sure they have a place,” Reidda said.

Reidda said she made arrangements for herself to stay with friends, but her aunt and uncle and two children need care and can’t come.

The city advised them to go to a shelter, but Uncle John said that isn’t an option.

“We have a special needs son and at the shelter, you have to leave in the morning and be out all day and come back at night,” said John Bokanoski. “What do you do with a 3-year-old all day in the cold?”

The family said the situation could have been avoided if Mohammad made repairs.

“You're going to have all these places to rent and all these people who are technically your responsibility and you're not going to do anything to help them, that's very ridiculous and cold-hearted,” Reidda said. “I've never dealt with anyone like that before.”

City officials said they are being very aggressive.

In the past, they’ve fined and arrested landlords like Mohammad. They said the same result could play out.

They’ve also said they’ll continue to help families in this situation.

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