COLUMBUS, Ohio — For the last two months, the Red Roof Inn in Westerville has been what Pam Rothwell has called “home."
She and other residents of Latitude Five25 apartments were displaced last Christmas after pipes burst, causing electrical and power issues.
The city condemned the property because asbestos was found throughout the building. Residents were only able to take with them what they could carry.
"Could you imagine living like this for two months?! With just two or three outfits,” said Rothwell.
Over the last few months, city and county leaders have been working to move residents into permanent housing.
Rothwell is still waiting to get her keys.
"I was supposed to move in on Feb. 1,” she said. "We need stability. We need structure. We need housing. We need our life back.”
In court last week, the City Attorney Zach Klein said the owners, Paxe Latitude, are being held in contempt of court and a court-appointed receiver will be taking over management of the property. The owners failed to sell the property in the time given.
They've been ordered to pay $2.5 million for reimbursements to the tenants.
Carlton McClaure’s last day at the Red Roof Inn was on Thursday. He is set to move into his new apartment Friday.
"There were times when I just wanted to give up and just leave Columbus,” he said.
He said his biggest worry is having to start over.
"I know all my clothes, anything that's wearable is gone. I just want my other things back,” said McClaure.
Rothwell said she has hope that she’ll find her new home.
“I don’t know...that's how I feel that's how a lot of us feel right now,” said Rothwell.