INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- A homeowner frustrated by months of double bills contacted CBS4 Problem Solvers for help, saying she couldn't get her management company to fix the issue.
Darlene Tinnel bought her mobile home in the Mars Hill area of Indianapolis several years ago upon her retirement, hoping to settle down peacefully.
"I actually retired Christmas 2014, and I moved in here four days later," Tinnel said.
For years, Tinnel said she loved her home and the community. Recently, though, things started to change and it left Tinnel with a billing problem she couldn't seem to fix, no matter how many people she talked to at the office.
"All I get is promises that it’s going to be straightened out and it isn't," Tinnel said. "You're my last resort, I don't know where else to go."
Tinnel showed CBS4 Problem Solvers months of bills and receipts, proving she has never been behind on payments. She typically owes around $500 for lot rent and various fees. In April, though, she received a bill for double her normal payment, nearly $1,000. Since then, she's been able to pay her normal amount each month, but the bills have continued to show up as double, increasing most recently to more than $1,100.
According to Tinnel, the community has been without a manager for months, and there are days during the week when no one staffs the office. CBS4 Problem Solvers found that to be true when we visited on a Thursday afternoon and found the office closed.
"It’s just so frustrating because you can’t communicate with anybody," Tinnel said. "All I want to do is get my bill straightened out, pay my bill on time, and live peacefully, you know, that’s all I want."
The community is managed by RV Horizons, a company based out of Colorado. We got in touch with the company's legal department just days before Tinnel's next bill was due. A representative said she would work on Tinnel's case and the next day, Tinnel was able to pay her regular lot rent to someone in the office and get a receipt.
A couple days later, Tinnel said she was called into the office and told the company had reviewed her bills and found that she was right, and the company actually owed her a small credit for overpayment.
RV Horizons' legal representative sent CBS4 Problem Solvers this statement:
"RV Horizons ... sincerely apologizes to Ms. Tinnel for our mistake and any resulting inconvenience and frustration. Ms. Tinnel timely paid her May 2018 rent, however, because the property has been without a Community Manager for approximately two months, the payment was not properly recorded and late fees were improperly assessed. One of our District Managers, who has been helping out at Highland Estates, met personally with Ms. Tinnel on Monday, July 16, 2018, to review the matter. Ms. Tinnel's account has been corrected and updated, which resulted in a credit being issued.
This situation with Ms. Tinnel has prompted RV Horizons to reevaluate and improve communication channels between management and residents so that any similar future situations can either be avoided or resolved more quickly. We sincerely thank Reporter Jill Glavan and CBS4 Problem Solvers for bringing this matter to our attention."
If you have a problem you'd like CBS4 Problem Solvers to consider, call our hotline at 317-677-1544 or email ProblemSolvers@cbs4indy.com.