Termite Trouble: Homeowners say nothing is being done about a termite infestation

Article Courtesy of  Channel 7 WSVN 7News Miami

By Brian Entin |and Leisa Williams

Published May 10, 2019


Buying a home is a big investment. But in one Kendall neighborhood, owners are watching their homes being eaten away, and they said there is nothing they can do to stop it. 7s’ Brian Entin has more on their “Termite Trouble.”

Kendall’s Pinetree Village is a cozy place to live with groups of connected townhomes in a quiet neighborhood.
But the neighbors in this section of homes share more than a common roof and walls.

Jesse Quijano, owner: “We have a bad termite problem.”

Jesse Quijano said the bugs showed up more than two years ago just after he and his wife spent thousands on renovations.

Jesse Quijano: “The fence started here all the way to the wall, and it was so bad I had to replace it. It was bad, as bad as this right here.”

*Jesse sticks his finger through the wood*

Owners of these units said they come home to find dead termites all over, and sometimes, even live ones.

Antonia Mongelli, owner: “You start to see droppings everywhere. It’s like a nightmare.”

Tenting the units would take care of the problem, but because the townhomes are connected, all of them have to be done at the same time, and the owner of one of the homes won’t agree to the fumigation.

Adriana Castardis, owner: “They’re not cooperating. I told them that if they continue on the route that they’re going, the homes could possibly be eaten up. We see piles of dust from the wood being eaten, so we do have proof of it.”

The unit is a rental. The owner lives out of state, and neighbors said he won’t budge.

Jesse Quijano: “I’ve reached out to the owner. I’ve reached out to family members of the owner. It’s just a lot of excuses.”

Frustrated, the neighbors reached out to their homeowners association for help last May.

Jesse Quijano: “They’re uncooperative as well.”

The Pinetree Village Homeowners Association’s rules state each unit owner “must perform promptly all maintenance and repair work within his unit, which if omitted, would affect other units in the development.”

If they don’t, the rules say it’s up to the association to address the problem, but these owners said that’s not happening.

Jesse Quijano: “They don’t respond to emails, which is just mind-boggling to me that a homeowners association would not jump in and say, ‘Hey, wait, let’s go ahead and figure this out.'”

7News reached out to the unit’s owner as well as the homeowners association and property management company, but they did not respond.

Antonia Mongelli: “Sometimes, I feel like the easy way is to put the house on sale, but it’s going to transfer the same problem to another person. That’s not right neither.”

These homeowners said they are afraid they’ll eventually have to find a solution to their termite trouble in court.