Charlotte couple donates $100,000 to assist Lake Arbor residents

(File Photo: Lake Arbor Apartments Aug. 7, 2018)

The United Way of Central Carolinas announced on Tuesday a Charlotte couple is donating $100,000 as a gift in support of Lake Arbor residents who received notices to vacate the property beginning on Saturday, Aug. 31. 

FOX 46 has reported on the lengthy, ongoing landlord dispute regarding unsafe living conditions, poor property management, and a neglectful landlord that resulted in a class action lawsuit against the apartment owner. 

The nearly 300-unit apartment complex in west Charlotte has been under the microscope for conditions ranging from water leaks to rodent infestations.

RELATED: Lake Arbor heads to housing appeals board for violations 

When Andrea and Sean Smith learned about United Way's effort to raise $350,000 by Aug. 31 through its Critical Need Relief Fund to help Lake Arbor residents, they felt compelled to respond and made a commitment of $100,000 to support the families who were beginning to relocate over Labor Day weekend. 

“The generosity of Andrea and Sean speaks volumes about their commitment to our community and will assist us in our role to help our partner agencies ensure that Lake Arbor families receive the help they need during this very difficult time,” said United Way of Central Carolinas President and CEO Laura Clark. 

Many residents had nowhere to go as the August 31 deadline loomed and were notified that the apartment owners would extend the date for them to vacate, giving them more time to be assessed for eligibility for possible relocation assistance.

The Smiths recognized that the immediate financial impact to the families forced to move would be devastating.

“The issue in our city with affordable housing is impacting so many people,” said Sean Smith. “Hearing about these families being displaced and potentially homeless really hurt our hearts. We want to see families stay together, for kids to stay in school, and for people not to have to worry where they are going to sleep at night.”  

RELATED: FOX 46 confronts Lake Arbor Apartments 'slumlord'

United Way continues to receive calls from individuals and the business community wanting to help Lake Arbor families and has extended the deadline for donations to its Critical Need Relief Fund through Saturday, September 7.

To date, nearly 150 gifts totaling $125,000 have been made toward the $350,000 goal.