Phillip Street Townhouses

Anyone who has lived off-campus knows that finding, living in, subletting off-campus housing can be a chore. There are many landlords and property managers that violate the tenant laws, but I like to believe that they do so out of ignorance, and not malice. However, the managers at Phillip Street Townhouses have been so irresponsible that I can only believe that they are terrible people, or are so oblivious that they should not be in business at all.

If you are looking for off-campus housing, don’t consider Phillip Street Townhouses. Unsurprisingly, the website makes it sound like a great place. I’ve taken a closer look and found otherwise.

  1. “Free High-Speed Internet” is promised on the main page of the website. This service has actually proven to be sporadic and slow. In the spring 2008 term, residents of this complex were left without Internet connection at least once for a period no less than 72 hours.
  2. “Free parking” is promised on the FAQ page. One day this term, all cars in the parking lot received a notice under their wipers saying that if they didn’t pay for parking, they would be ticketed. When residents went to pay for their free parking, they were told that they could only purchase one term’s worth of parking at a time. Other than the obscenely inconvenient denomination, the real problem with this was that one month of the term had already passed, so they were charging retroactively. After forking over the parking fee, residents never received an identifier, and the parking was never enforced. Sounds a scam to me.

    Yummy mould in the showers

    Yummy mold in the showers

  3. Cleanliness. It’s not promised, and student housing is never known for it, but if you want to live here, get ready to embrace mold-infested units.
  4. Safety. In Fall 2008, a resident was held at knife-point in his townhouse while his home was ransacked. The parking lot is not lit and is pitch dark when night falls. Fortunately, UW Walksafe will walk you to your door.

To be fair, there are some advantages to living here.

  1. Location. It’s close to school, and it’s close to food. When you’re getting 3 hours of sleep pre-8:30am class, it counts.
  2. Maintenance. The managers are pretty good about fixing and replacing leaky faucets.
  3. UW Off-Campus Housing Agreement. The school has made arrangements with the owners to provide help to students. Perhaps this is the kind of monitoring CBS Properties needs to get its act in shape.

In summary, if you want to live close to school, live at WCRI. You’ll have to do some chores, but you have to do some chores regardless of where you live.

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