West-end Toronto tenants faced with evictions from homes they’ve lived in for decades – Newstalk 1010 (iHeartRadio)

A Parkdale community group says two women, who have been living in their homes for decades and are now facing eviction, should be permitted to remain in their apartments.

Both Corrine Lowe and Maria Theresa De Mesa have lived at 1251 King Street West for over a decade.

Lowe, a 56-year-old cancer survivor living with disabilities, has been in her unit in Waldorf Towers since 2009, while De Mesa, 61, has lived with her son in her apartment for 31 years.

Now, both are facing eviction from their long-time homes Lowe for noise and De Mesa for clutter.

Lowe told CTV News Toronto Tuesday that she has a hearing condition that requires her to communicate at higher volumes, along with relying on a ventilator to sleep, so she doesnt think noise is a fair reason for eviction.

If Im being told Im too loud, well, I'm sorry, but I'm in my apartment. If I want to have a wild party, as long as it's before 10 p.m., I have that right. I pay my rent, Lowe said.

She said she received her eviction notice in the spring, giving her 30 days notice to leave her unit, but has not complied with the notice.

Obviously [its] because we can't afford it. If I could afford it, if they could say to me Heres your first and last months rent. Leave, I would gladly leave this place, Lowe said.

We pay close to $1,000 a month in rent. That doesnt leave very much for groceries, phone bill, or transportation, she continued, adding that she is a recipient of the Ontario Disability Support Program.

Lowe uses a mobility device due to her severe arthritis and bone deterioration which makes transportation challenging, despite having to attend many medical appointments.

When reached for comment, Vito Simone, property manager of 1251 King Street West, told CTV News Toronto that adjacent tenants have consistently complained about noise including yelling and television usage in the middle of the night from Lowes unit and that Ms. Lowes behaviour has substantially interfered with [tenant's] ability to enjoy and live in their apartments.

However, Lowe says it is necessary for her to call for assistance when she needs to get up and down during the night and that she cannot help the extra noise associated with her medical conditions.

Why don't they go through the pain and the muscle spasms that I go through every night and every day and see if they can be quiet.

Meanwhile, De Mesa has lived with her 33-year-old son, Anthony, for whom she acts as a caregiver, in Waldorf Towers for more than three decades.

Anthony lives with disabilities and cannot speak. He was only two years old when the family moved into the apartment.

He likes this place very much because he grew up here. He's never lived anywhere else, De Mesa told CTV News Toronto on Thursday.

De Mesa says she has been served an eviction notice due to clutter in her home.

They said I have a lot of stuff but I am a good tenant. I pay my rent on time, she said.

Her hearing with the Ontario Landlord-Tenant Board is scheduled for Aug. 18 and she says its causing both her mental and physical health to deteriorate.

I cannot sleep, I have anxiety, I cry because of what they are trying to do to me and my son. My health is going down, she said in a press release issued by community group Parkdale Organize, who has been assisting the tenants navigate the legal system.

Simone says that De Mesa's situation is "untenable."

After 16 years of trying to work with Ms. De Mesa, ... we believe a government agency would be better equipped to assist her and her son, a spokesperson for the company said.

The company told CTV News Toronto that De Mesas clutter is contributing to a bed bug problem in the building. However, she says that despite owning many things, her unit is often very clean.

Lowe also reported dealing with bed bugs in her home unit and says she has lost many pieces of furniture due to the apartment's infestation.

De Mesa believes that because she has lived in the unit for over three decades and is paying well under market value rent, her landlords want to rent out the unit to new, higher-paying tenants.

But Nuspur Investments says that the issue has nothing to do with money, stating that they offered rent deferrals and reductions to tenants during the pandemic.

Regardless, both tenants are adamant that they cannot afford to move and will not be able to pay present-day rental fees.

Just for the moving costs, its going to cost me $2,500, said Lowe.

I have too many health issues and medical issues to live on the streets anymore.

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West-end Toronto tenants faced with evictions from homes they've lived in for decades - Newstalk 1010 (iHeartRadio)

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