OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – New owners of a northeast Oklahoma City apartment complex are evicting their tenants, leaving them scrambling to find new homes.

The new ownership of the Grand Boulevard Townhomes says it’s their legal right to do so, but those living there believe they weren’t given enough time to prepare for this move.

In early May, the tenants of the Grand Boulevard Townhomes near Northeast 23rd St. Northeast Grand Blvd. were given a notice by the new owners, Grand Circle Investments, LLC, that their leases were terminated, and they had 30 days to move out. 

Many who live there were shocked and unprepared for what they call a sudden move.

“[Garbage workers] picked up about 10, 20 loads of furnishing that people had thrown away because they couldn’t take it with them because they had no money,” said Tenant Albert Bolden. “Now half of them probably living on the streets.” 

Cheryl Castulo shared her circumstance of being a mother of five.

“We don’t have nowhere to go,” she said. “I mean, I called a few a shelters and stuff. I called a Salvation Army and they don’t have enough room for me and five kids.”

Grand Circle Investments took over the complex in January 2022. According to their eviction notice, the lease agreement with the former owner, Property Management Services Inc., allows new ownership to terminate the lease with 30 days’ notice if they so desire.

On May 6, Grand Circle announced they were going to exercise that option.

On June 9,  tenants received a notice from management asking for their keys to be returned and warning that their apartments would be inspected in 48 hours to make sure they’re empty.

“It sounds like they’re threatening to just lock our doors, but I’m sorry, this paper is not signed by the county court clerk saying that it’s actual legal eviction,” said tenant Danielle Bethurum. 

Landlord-Tenant Attorney Richard Klinge tells KFOR, Grand Boulevard can’t evict tenants until they go through a legal process.

“They cannot force you out of your apartment until they get a judgment of a court saying that they have the right to possession of those premises,” he explained.

Oklahoma State Representative Mickey Dollens, District 93, called the situation corporate greed.

“Some people have lived there for 5 or 10 years and then they’re all of the sudden given 30 days to find a new place, yeah, I consider that pretty heartless,” he expressed. “At the very minimum, make sure they get their safety deposit back. Maybe that could buy them some time at a motel until they can find new living accommodations, but a lot of time, people in vulnerable financial situations sign lease agreements that are terribly disadvantageous for them and in a situation like this, I feel we should do everything we can as a community to come around them.”

KFOR called and emailed Grand Boulevard during business hours Monday.

Later that night, manager Jerry Sanders provided comment saying, “In January, new owners informed tenants that they had five months to look for another place to live and that in May we would be giving out 30-day notices to move out.”