Landlord forces San Jose seniors out, now 81 need new homes

Residents walk into the Atria Chateau Gardens assisted living facility in San Jose, Calif., on Friday, Nov. 1, 2017. This facility will have to shut down in February because Westlake Realty Group has decided not to renew its lease. The announcement was made to the residents this week and will displace the some 80 current residents who will have 60 days to find a new place to live. Atria is doing its best to assist residents in their search for housing. (Dan Honda/Bay Area News Group)
SAN JOSE – When 94-year-old Emma Magnuson moved into her space at an assisted dwelling facility this calendar year, she figured she would stay there for the relaxation of her everyday living.

In its place, with all the vacations rapidly approaching, Magnuson and the 80 other seniors who are now living in Atria Chateau Gardens in Willow Glen have quickly acquired they’re going to before long be away from a house.

The center is closing its doorways following landlord Westlake Realty Team refused to renew its lease, in accordance to Atria, and indicated you can find new – and maybe more rewardingoptions for your two-story setting up inside of a silent, residential neighborhood.

Now Magnuson and her neighbors – many of whom have dementia – as well as their people can have to search for new homes within a sector the place options are notoriously high priced and confined. Their plight highlights the unforgiving character of the Bay Area’s red-hot property current market, where the ravenous desire for housing and growth can cause the displacement of vulnerable people.

“I do not like it,” Magnuson said, sitting within the space she moved into a few months back, wherever she spends hours studying romance novels inside a leather armchair because of the window. While in the lavatory, her collection of costume necklaces hangs in rows over the wall. At mealtimes, she sits up coming to her very best pal, Rhea. “I love it listed here. Why should I move?”

Magnuson and the other seniors, a few of whom have lived at Atria for years, have two months to pack up their matters and move out. Management broke the information to residents and their families Wednesday, stating that despite Atria’s greatest attempts to help keep the ability running, Westlake turned down their lease in favor of turning the creating into anything other than senior housing.

“It’s not an enjoyable matter to possess this occur,” Michael Mejia, a senior vp at Atria Senior Residing, claimed within an job interview.,”but now I’ve to maneuver forward and assist my residents and aid my team.”

Westlake executives didn’t respond to calls and e-mail trying to get comment Friday. The company, a San Mateo-based property management business that owns housing through the entire Bay Area, hasn’t said publicly what it intends to try and do while using the Atria making after the aged residents go out.

On Friday, a stream of involved family members walked in and out of Atria, comforting every other, hugging, and perhaps tearing up since they crossed paths.

Nancy Safford concerned about going her mother, who’s got just gotten used to daily life at Atria Chateau Gardens. The transfer 5 years in the past from her home of half a century into an assisted dwelling facility was traumatic, and Safford suspects a 2nd upheaval won’t be any much easier. To help make issues even worse, the 93-year-old woman has slight dementia and does not understand why she’s being created to maneuver.“I think it will be genuinely tricky on her. Super tricky,” Safford said.

Atria staff members will do the job with residents as well as their households to find new homes for your displaced seniors, and Mejia claims he expects all residents who want to remain in San Jose will be in a position to. Some may possibly go into yet another property within the Atria chain – the company has ten other amenities within the Bay Area, which includes just one just two miles through the house about to be shuttered. But that facility cannot in shape all 80 residents. Atria has promised to pay for its residents’ transferring expenses if they relocate to another Atria property, and is functioning to succeed in very similar deals with other senior living communities.

But landing a spot in the senior living facility, primarily one particular that’s affordable, could be hard. San Jose’s senior residing houses tend to be more than 95 percent occupied – above the nationwide normal of about ninety percent, according to the Nationwide Expenditure Heart for Seniors Housing & Care, which collects data on senior housing. And such a facility while in the Bay Area costs, on ordinary, $4,500 a month, reported Mike Scoggin of Oasis Senior Advisors, a consulting business that helps elderly clients as well as their people find different types of senior accommodations.

“People typically don’t have enough money to afford the places that are available around here,” he mentioned.

Atria charges from $3,375 for a studio to $4,900 for a one-bedroom, stated Scoggin, who tracks rates at senior dwelling centers inside the Bay Area. But some residents’ people worry their rent will increase using the transfer. Some also will have to pay a move-in fee equal to 1 month’s rent – an expense they already paid at Atria, and thought they’d never must fork out again.

In addition for the economic expense, forced moves is often upsetting for seniors, in particular those who have lived in a single place for years, stated Dr. Allen Power, a geriatrician based mostly in Rochester, New York, an author and a professor at Schlegel-University of Waterloo Research Institute for Aging. Caregivers at Atria likely have gotten to know the residents and their needs, and developed trust with them, he stated. Landing in the new place with strangers to care for them can be traumatic for elderly residents – and might even have a negative impact on their health, Power said.

“It’s a very tough situation to put people in,” he explained.

Some aged people who undergo sudden moves have been diagnosed with relocation stress syndrome – a condition that leads to symptoms such as anxiety, depression and disorientation.

To assist prevent that sort of trauma, California law mandates elder care amenities take certain steps before they shut down to help make the transfer less difficult for its residents – such as evaluating just about every resident’s care needs and providing a list of nearby available accommodations that meet those needs. Each individual facility also must submit a closure plan for state approval. Atria is compiling that plan now, mentioned California Department of Social Services spokesman Michael Weston.

Magnuson’s son-in-law, Glenn Thomas, who teaches classes in social work at San Jose State University, knows the landlord has the right to repurpose the Atria setting up, but he questions whether it’s the “right” factor to accomplish.

“It seemed so cold – it’s upsetting,” he mentioned. “They’re not just pieces of furniture. They’re actual people. And they’re aged and they’re vulnerable.”