SEATTLE — Susan Roser says her property manager owes her more than $20,000.
“It’s coming, it’s coming, it’s coming. The check is coming. You’re going to be made whole,” says Roser. “You’re going to get paid. I heard these things over and over again. Ad nauseam.”
That property manager is Jim Alekson. And we’ve been investigating his business, Alekson Property Management Professionals (APMPros) for months.
At least 16 landlords across the Puget Sound say he collected more than $100,000 in rent and deposits from tenants and failed to send it to clients.
Roser says Alekson’s failure to pay pushed her to do the unthinkable.
“I finally was forced to sell. I had to stop the bleeding,” she says.
Now, the state has moved on Alekson’s Real Estate Managing Broker License.
“It’s revoked for 10 years. Which is the highest amount of years we can do a revocation,” says Christine Anthony, communications manager for Washington’s Department of Licensing.
Anthony says the license was pulled, officially, for “unprofessional conduct.”
But no fine or restitution was ordered.
“We don’t have the authority to go out and seek financial compensation for victims. Unfortunately, that has to be done through the courts,” says Anthony.
At least one former client did go to the courts.
“A lot of people have lost money that he was supposed to collect for them. And particularly in this time with the COVID-19 and so forth, it’s a difficult time for a lot of people to be losing those funds,” says Attorney John Connelly.
Connelly represents a south sound couple who APMPros owes $16,000. His clients sued the company and won a default judgment. But they’re still trying to collect.
“This is, it’s conversion, it’s a crime. It’s theft. A lot of people trusted him, and he betrayed that trust,” says Connelly.
While Alekson’s property management company was in trouble, he started a hand sanitizer business.
We called Alekson and stopped by his last known address. People there say he moved out of the country.
If that is true, he leaves 16 landlords out in the cold and walks away with six figures of their money at the worst possible time.
“I think that he should be prosecuted. And I think there should be restitution to the people whose money he stole,” says Connelly.
The last time I spoke to APMPros owner Jim Alekson, he told me he was going to give landlords all outstanding rent, deposits, and tax paperwork. Because you can’t claim your business on your taxes if you don’t have the paperwork.
But the landlords we contacted say they never got the documents or the money.
Several former APMPros clients also filed police reports and complaints with the attorney general. But when we checked, we couldn’t find any cases actively being pursued or prosecuted. And that’s another question we’d like to have answered.
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