Residents at East Austin complex still struggling after winter storm

Residents at the Mueller Flats apartments in East Austin are fed up. They said management has failed them by not helping after the winter storm.

Many still have water damage inside their homes, others said mold has taken over their apartment.

"Even though I double mask up and wear latex gloves, I feel like I can't even be in there because of the heavy presence of mold and mildew," said resident Ann Marie Romero. 


Romero has mold throughout her apartment. She said it has grown in each room, covers furniture, the floor, and the ceiling. She adds that she does not feel comfortable living in her apartment. 

She said she has reached out to management about her living situation, but said they called her apartment a "disarray." When she would try to communicate with them further, emails and calls would go unacknowledged. She said she even tried to approach the property manager on-site, but he ran from her. 

RELATED: Plumbing supplies still difficult to find following winter storms

"I tried to contact them by email and then also just on property when I've seen them and they absolutely refuse to talk to me," Romero said. 

However, it isn't just Romero facing issues and push back from management. 

"There has been an overwhelming feeling of hopelessness among the property of people feeling like I'm on my own, there's really no one here to look after my situation cause there's so many things to handle," said resident David Rojas. 

RELATED: City officials announce updated RENT Assistance Program for 2021

For Rojas, he is still living with standing water inside of his apartment. He also has had difficulty communicating with management. "Management is not really helping us," Rojas said.

RELATED: Nearly 4 million fish killed by winter storm along Texas coast

He adds that these issues go throughout the entire complex. "We've had a lot of people basically express the same things that they're not hearing back from management; they still have all kinds of damage," he said. "So, it's a complex, literal, complex issue, that they're not willing to address or communicate with people about how terrible the situation is." 

Zoe Rousselle echoed Rojas' sentiments. "It's just been a whole, just hectic range {of emotions}, like range of anger, frustration, and just hopelessness," she said. 

RELATED: At least 57 people died in the Texas winter storm, mostly from hypothermia

Rousselle lives there as well, and while the extent of her damage is to the drywall and exposed installation, she said it affects all the residents. "There's just mold everywhere," she said. "And you can kind of smell it like, as you walk into some of the, like the bottom hallways, just outside of the apartment."

FOX 7 Austin reached out to management at Mueller Flats and asked about the living situations residents are experiencing and if they have a timeline on when these issues may be fixed. They told us: "We are not going to talk with anyone" then hung up.

Code enforcement was out on Tuesday going unit to unit. Romero and Rojas said they hope they'll see the truth of what people are living in.


"Everywhere is like destroyed," Rojas said, adding while this has been a trying month, it has given them the opportunity to lean on one another as neighbors. "I think a lot of people have really just harnessed that emotion to come together to fix this problem and it's made things slightly better."