We rented from Howard West for a year. The staff who work in the office are pleasant and friendly but it took MONTHS to get repairs done. When we moved in, there was still furniture left from a previous tenant, and kitchen work still needed to be done. That took over a month. I had to drag the furniture out the door and down the porch steps and send an email to get them to come. One bedroom closet folding door would fall off the track each time you opened it. They sent a repair person who put it back on the track (which was only good until we opened the closet door again). Oven didn't work (sometimes it took an hour to heat to 200 degrees; other times less, and we could never tell what the actual temperature was). When I reported it someone came out and left us an oven thermometer. Refrigerator was missing a drawer and shelf. We had lived there 4.5 months before it was replaced. Overall grunge - the kitchen cabinets had a sticky grunge to them, the top of the refrigerator had not been cleaned for years, and the light fixtures near the kitchen were also oily and dark. I cleaned them all as they weren't clean when we arrived. When we moved out we got a note reminding us to clean the place stating that the fact that it had not been in good condition when we moved in was no excuse not to leave it in good condition when we left. That, in essence, is a management philosophy.
I usually don't write reviews, but i'm doing so for this building and this management because i don't want students to have a hard time. Following are the issues we faced: 1. Poor maintenance service by HowardWest Management. 2. Excuses to not return security money. 3.Slacks in responding, delayed response and sometimes no response to calls/voice mails/emails. 4. Unprofessional conduct while replying to mail. 5. Bad sound proofing, the wooden floor creaks alot. I have elaborated my experience below: Me and my two roommates didn't have much problem for the first year we stayed there, but thereafter the plumbing became a serious issue. Every week the flush used to get clogged and quite a lot of times yellow water would flow out of it. We would try to contact HowardWest, but most often than not no one would respond and the call used to reach the voice mail. The management slacked in responding. They wouldn't even respond on their emergency number. And when finally after a lot of consistent calling and emailing they'd, their service slacked. Me and my roommates were told that its happening because we may be flushing sanitary stuff. Despite denying flushing any such thing, every time the plumbing request was submitted we were told that we were flushing sanitary stuff. The tone most often than not was not appropriate. On lot of insistence when the management finally sent plumber for a permanent fix, we were told that we'd pay for the service if they find out any sanitary stuff (to which we agreed). Now cut to when we wanted to break the lease and move out of Pittsburgh, we discussed the lease breakage and were told that if we found the tenants minimum lease breakage fee will be charged "if any". We hired cleaners, left the house cleaner than we got it, moved out in December mid and new tenants took over in late December. Ever since the new tenants moved we had been asking for the security deposit The management slacked in responding, didn't pick the calls, didn't respond to the mail for weeks and when they did they said that they were discussing the amount with the owner. And after following up for more than a month, today they responded by saying that they can return just 30% of the security money as we made them fix the plumbing system and the owner found the house in a dirty condition.
Howard West Properties, and specifically Adam were great. We were sad to leave our lovely, cozy, totally redone apartment and the only reason we did is my wife and I relocated out of state for work. I cannot recommend this company highly enough. They are good people who care about you and their properties. We miss it and Pittsburgh a lot! Thank you, Adam, for everything!
I wouldn’t be moving out except I’m relocating to a different state for work. Location was great. Apartment was great. No issues with the apartment itself. Foyer of building was drafty at times b/c neighbors would leave door cracked, but really safe location. Pet-friendly (I have 2 dogs) landlords that respect responsible pet parents. I lived in my apartment for 3 years and the tenants before me for 6 years, so you can get tenure with these apartments. All around a great place to live!
These people are awesome! Really respectful staff, both with the maintenance guy and office staff. They always gave us plenty of notice when they needed to come in, and were willing to schedule based around our needs. They were also very accommodating in regards to pets (we had 2 cats and a dog), and (this doesn't have much to do with them as landlords) our neighbors were GREAT! The only reason my wife and I moved out is because we bought a house. If we hadn't been able to find one to purchase, we would have gladly renewed our lease for another year!
We love renting with Howard West and are sad to be leaving our apartment with their company. Relocating for work purposes or else we would have stayed with the company for a few more years. Always accommodating when there was an issue and communicative with any visits or needed maintenance in the building. You won't regret leasing with this company.
Hated to leave Howard West Properties but I relocated for work. I would recommend them to anyone looking for a good and reliable landlord. They might not be the most professional as I think they are a smaller run office and not the big corporate type, but they are very caring and always treated me with great respect. I only needed to call maintenance one time but they made sure that the issue was resolved immediately and were very professional about it. I know that other people who have lived in the building for longer than I did also only had great things to say. I never write reviews but felt that with the service that they gave me, they deserve a good writeup. They really do try hard to make sure everyone is taken care of and happy. Best landlord by far out of the 6 I had been with in the Shadyside / Oakland area.