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Renter Complains of $2,000 Water Bill But Investigation Reveals Bigger Problems

SPRING HILL – It’s not unusual for utility costs to fluctuate at different times of the year, especially when sprinkler systems are connected to the county water system, but one local resident says her water usage spiked nearly 3900% last month and she wants to know who’s going to pay the bill.

When Tracy Thomas opened her County Utilities Statement last month, she was shocked to find that she owed over $2,000. Tracy’s average bill is usually about $50 per month but she did notice a spike to about $100 in previous months. When Tracy contacted the Utilities Department to complain, a technician inspected her property and found that tree roots had grown around an unused sprinkler system, causing it to burst. For over a month water flowed underground and undetected, resulting in the loss of nearly 174,000 gallons of water. The average monthly use, according to Hernando County Utilities Department is about 8,000 – 10,000 gallons. Tracy, who is just renting the home, hired a repairman to fix the leak at a cost of about $300 and deducted that amount from her March Rent payment.During an interview, Tracy tells RNRF that when she asked the Utilities Department who would be responsible for paying the outrageous bill, they told her that she would be responsible and that she had 60 days to pay the bill for face disconnection. RNRF spoke to County Spokesperson Virginia Singer who said, “If she brings in a receipt showing that she paid for the repairs then we can adjust her bill.” But when I asked by how much, Singer said “I’m not sure but that could be negotiated.”

During our investigation, RNRF discovered something that might make the $2,000 water bill a moot point. Turns out, on January 19th the homeowner, Mad Flo Investments, LLC was granted a judgement in County Court because Tracy had failed to pay her rent since November of 2016. Tracy denies that claim and says she’s been making bank deposits to the homeowner and is not behind in rent. Despite her claims, on February 27th a judge ordered Tracy to vacate the residence. Tracy says she was unaware of the court proceedings and says she thought everything was taken care of.

We tried contacting Mad Flo investments but the phone number is linked to a Miami Lakes attorney office, who say they have no connection to Mad Flo Investments. The only addresses listed for Mad Flo are the Miami Lakes address, which is for the unrelated law office, and a P.O. Box in St. Petersburg.We tried contacting Mad Flo Investments’ attorney, Stephany Garcia, who coincidentally is also based out of the same address in Miami Lakes, but she has not returned our calls.

On February 28th, Grow Financial Federal Credit Union foreclosed on the home and the property is now set for public auction on May 30th of this year.

Tracy seemed undaunted by the news, even when we explained that she was illegally residing in the home. But this isn’t the first time Tracy has been evicted from a Spring Hill Residence.

In 2013, a judge ordered Tracy to vacate a home she rented on Rio Circle after she failed to pay rent for nearly three months.

Tracy says she’s not paying April’s Rent until she hears from Mad Flo Investments.

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  • To Mediafoolishness: My daily routine is to check RNRF for the latest in Hernando County. I sometimes post a comment, but usually I choose to stay out of the nonsense which is posted here. Why? because of people like you who seems to think this is an opportunity to exercise your meanness and to (for some idiotic reason) bring up the old stand by insult………….Obama. Look, he is no longer our President, so let it go – get a life aside from politically slamming people on this web site.

    Thursday, 13 April 2017, 6:21 pm
  • I am a landlord and I have had my share of lousy, deadbeat tennants. After learning the hard way, I am very selective of who I rent my property to. And furthermore,I will never rent to a section 8 tennant, never again.

    Thursday, 13 April 2017, 4:47 pm
  • Looks like a nice house her family lived in for FREE recently. $50. Discount cuz they’re poor? I live in a mobile because I can afford it. Unless someone will let me slide on rent because I’m on disability?
    It does sound like the water system issue ifs the landlords problem.

    Thursday, 13 April 2017, 3:59 pm
  • I got some deer jerky from food for thoughts deer…. Hey you guys remember jumping beans?

    Thursday, 13 April 2017, 2:20 pm
  • She probably did this to screw over the landlord. This happened to me in the past with a tenant renting a property in Port Richey. The biggest difference is that in Port Richey, unlike Hernando county, the owner of the property is responsible for the water bill. So when the tenant was evicted and screwed me over for the water bill of $1200, I was responsible for this water bill, not the tenant. We adjusted it down to half, after showing the police report for vandalism and criminal mischief, but the tenants didn’t have to pay anything.

    Thursday, 13 April 2017, 11:15 am
    • Her “kind” always playing the system !!! 🙂

      Thursday, 13 April 2017, 1:55 pm
  • Tree Root??? more like ni—s jumpin they a– round fetty wappin it. Aint it like 20 of yall in that house traffic in & out??Hey, rapping isnt for everyone guys. Sell some CD’s and pay for shelter instead of a new pair of sneakers. All them mixed grimlins squatting can’t throw trash in the trash can properly instead pile it up on the side of the house Dirty LAZY FREE LOADERS living off the government!!! Did’n HCSO have this house under investigation for drugs but they can’t afford to pay rent. She can afford to pay HCU” (my cousin got robbed by her kids they are trouble).

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 11:27 pm
  • Which low lifer Scott are you K? Seems they all have arrest records and your momma isn’t doing things legally either. Never has and she never will. Momma Scott scammed the system by saying she has all those kids and got public assistance while those kids wear the best of clothes, had nice hair do’s and all of the nicer things while their mom collected public assistance. Yes this is Momma Scotts kin. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. How do I know all of this? I am a former landlord, of which family I will not disclose.
    Tracy Thomas belongs in jail.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 11:09 pm
  • Hernando county always quick to judge and call people scrumbags. Yet how many of you have your own skeletons?

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 10:21 pm
    • I don’t know anyone who is stupid enough to go to the media when they have as many skeletons in their closet as Tracy does. I don’t know many people who think they can live in someone else’s home for free either. She’s done this to herself.

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 11:23 pm
      • Janice……..you’re just an uppity first class bytch.

        Thursday, 13 April 2017, 1:59 pm
    • Plus she’s only paying her bill 50 bucks at a time. How is she getting away with not paying her full water bill each month? Look at the balance and do your own math. She’s a slacker who wants stuff for free.

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 11:25 pm
  • There has been nothing but trash living in that house. It looks like a pig sty inside and out. It’s disgusting to have our neighborhood fall to this trash.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 10:04 pm
    • Yes maam It sure is. She’s trash and so are all of the people who reside with her. No pride in anything but they go out and spend their welfare on making themselves look good. They need to go and let us have a decent neighbor put in that house, after it’s fumigated, cleaned and painted.

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 11:20 pm
  • Another story about a worthless Ninja.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 9:55 pm
  • This witch plays the system just like the rest of hers family. Dem Scotts are nothing but trouble and want everything handed to them for free. Plus thems gots drug problems and have been popped for dem before. Old lady Theresa Scott ain’t even married to her old man and has been using his name illegally since Daryl was birthed. What a bunch of low life trash.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 9:47 pm
  • Living income tax check to income tax check
    Pay first last security and nothing else , it takes months to have someone evicted and she knows that , don’t turn on the light if you don’t want people to see

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 8:37 pm
  • Wait a second she’s the one who claims she paid for repairs and deducted it from the rent she wasn’t paying. She was also offered the opportunity by the county to bring in the receipt for the repairs to have the bill adjusted. What makes you think she paid for repairs while not paying rent

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 8:00 pm
  • Saying the utility company or the landlord is responsible for the water bill is ludicrous. That would be like saying the electric company or the landlord would be responsible if the stove was left on for a month straight and there was an increase in the electric bill. Water is consumable item just like electric.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 7:35 pm
  • Not paying rent is stealing. This happens more than people realize. The non paying renters have more rights than the homeowner it seems. I would like to see an investigative article on this subject.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 7:33 pm
  • This is the registered agent of the company which owns the home. An attorney. http://www.hugofloridolaw.com/

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 6:40 pm
    • Not a good attorney is he couldn’t even defend his own foreclosure.
      Residential and Commercial Closings, Foreclosure Defense, Modifications, and all Real Estate Transactions

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 11:38 pm
  • Stop making excuses for this lady. She is living by stealing her rent from the homeowner. I hope this lady is shamed so much so that she is forced to move from the county. Having a roof over your head cost money. Just another American who thinks they are entitled to live here for free.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 6:40 pm
  • She is late on her water bills constantly. How can this amount of water “leaking” not be detected? With that amount of water the grass would have greened up and grown near the leak. Anyone with any brain would know there is a problem somewhere.
    I hate when people want attention then don’t tell the whole story. She was probably hoping to get money out of us readers and it backfired. I’ll say she starts a gofundme page.
    Another dead beat who is responsible for the water bill and the owner of the home should be responsible for the repair of the leaking pipe. That all depends on how the lease reads though.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 6:30 pm
    • It probably washed out the dirt under foundation and will cause a sink hole

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 8:39 pm
      • I don’t see any trees growing that close to the house and I’d love to see a picture of where this supposedly happened with the tree. There has to be an area in the yard that was dug up so that the repairs were made. If a plumber noticed and found the leak with no problem, why didn’t see notice something was going on? No brains.

        Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 11:22 pm
  • now its racist K..??? must be a relative….DEADBEATS … truth hurts !!!!!

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 6:05 pm
  • The HOMEOWNER/RENTAL COMPANY IS RESPONSIBLE for the TREE ROOTS & the WATER BILL I would think

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 5:50 pm
    • you do have NO CLUE renters have to put utilities in their own names unless special deals are made with the home owner. my guess if he is a lawyer he will not be responsible for anything..

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 10:54 pm
  • It looks like to me that she will do this again (dirt bag)

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 5:31 pm
    • She lives income tax check to income tax check it takes months to evict someone and she knows it this ain’t her first go around

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 8:41 pm
  • This is the first RNRF article I am actually disappointed in. Shame on you Tom. We all have extenuating circumstances that may force us to move towards leaving a home. Readers assuming she was a deadbeat are ignorant. Truly disappointed.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 5:23 pm
    • Sad to say, but I wholeheartedly agree with your comment. This lady needed help looking in to this very high water bill and instead the story ended up making her look bad. Although I’ve never faced eviction I have seen situations where an eviction happens due too illness, injury, loss of a job etc. This doesn’t make the person a dirtbag, but when you just write in an article that this lady had been evicted before and you don’t give any details it is not fair to her. Is it just me or does the real story here seem to be that this Mad Flo company doesn’t sound like it exists??? She has been depositing her rent into their bank account and who ever runs this “Mad Flo” place hasn’t used her rent to pay the mortgage! The only reason her name is associated with the eviction case is because she’s the tennent. Everyone glossed over that info and just focused on Ms.Thomas because her prior eviction was unnecessarily included at the end of this story. Tom I’ve always commended you on your reporting and defended you to the people who make rude comments to you for no reason, I’ve never made any harsh judgements on you, but this story saddens me. You had a chance to potentially expose this company that could be ripping off our friends and neighbors. Instead it just came off sounding like you were posting info about Ms. Thomas that had nothing to do with the current situation and hurting her character in the process. I know you are a good person and I hope you make this right

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 7:23 pm
        • Did you think to look more into Mad Flo? Sounds like a fake name to begin with. Hernando is one of the biggest areas for people moving into for closers. This to me sounds like someone may have scamed her. She isn’t being evicted by Mad Flo. How many others in the area are renting from a company called Mad Flo?

          Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 10:20 pm
          • Read the freaking article, “Turns out, on January 19th the homeowner, Mad Flo Investments, LLC was granted a judgement in County Court because Tracy had failed to pay her rent since November of 2016.”

            It was right there, plain as day, the owner evicted her. Mad Flo Investments is an active company with the Division of Corporations for the State of Florida and have been since 4/30/2012. I looked that up in 30 seconds.

            They may have had the property foreclosed on but she was not scammed, she just didn’t pay her rent and was evicted, for the 2nd time in 3 years.

            R.I.F.

            Thursday, 13 April 2017, 3:00 pm
        • Just curious Tom, did Ms. Thomas offer the receipts for the payments she said she has been making to the bank account of the landlord? Surely the bank would have given her a receipt for any such transaction and the bank should be able to provide information on where the funds went after that, maybe not too willingly but the information is there somewhere … just saying

          Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 10:35 pm
          • Attorneys don’t often give out their bank account numbers to anyone. She wasn’t making payments into his account. She is lying.

            Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 11:13 pm
      • I don’t believe she was depositing rent into their account. What would be the reason for eviction besides non payment of her rent? The article didn’t say it but I will. She’s been in trouble for theft before as well as other things. She’s a dirt bag who has learned to abuse the system. It’s all a matter of public record. Look her up under the last name of Johnson too. She’s illegally living in a home that she has not paid rent on, she’s been evicted and can’t even abide by that court ruling. Meanwhile she’s out eating with her new man at Applebee’s. Seems to me she should be paying her bills and paying attention to her home instead of throwing parties, partying and spending money foolishly. Tracy Thomas most certainly has her priorities mixed up and I’m glad to see news like this. It’s one person I would never risk renting to. Thank you RNRF for bringing this to us landlords attention. As for Mad Flo, this is nothing for them and they won’t be returning calls to any reporters. I also feel that Tracy was trying to garner sympathy from people who may have come forward to help financially and it’s a good thing RNRF investigated. Tracy Thomas is a scammer and needs to get her life together. She’s a grandmother, for crying out loud and a poor example for not only her kids but all of those grand babies she has.

        Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 11:06 pm
      • AmyG, Mad Flo is the one that filed the eviction proceedings so they do in fact exist. In eviction proceedings the tenant is personally served with papers so she would have known of the court dates and would have had a chance to show she was making payments. No one glossed over any info, you just failed at reading comprehension.

        Because she obviously is a bad tenant, based upon 2 evictions in 3 years, she is the only one that hurt her character. Reporting facts is just that and the reporter of facts is not the person to blame for hurting someones character.

        Thursday, 13 April 2017, 2:54 pm
    • Second eviction within 3 years, I think calling her a deadbeat is on the money. Since she is going to need a place to stay I am sure you will make room for her since you seem to have a big heart. What is you address? I’ll make sure she gets it.

      Thursday, 13 April 2017, 2:46 pm
  • My water bill bin 60 -75 more to , water guy never read meters any more. ( why )

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 5:11 pm
    • It’s read by driving through the neighborhood, just like the electric Co

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 7:23 pm
  • Regardless whether the woman was behind in rent, a tenant should not be responsible for tree roots causing leaks in the supply line going into the house. That is clearly the owner’s responsibility. And in this case, that is apparently a finance company. That is what the story is here. Nothing more. A person being behind in rent is not news.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 4:52 pm
    • WHERE IN THIS STORY DOES IT SAY SUPPLY LINE GOING INTO THE HOUSE? If that was the case she would have no water pressure. I bet it wouldn’t take a month to notice it..
      Now as far as that being the owners problem, that depends on how her lease is worded. but my guess is if she is not going to pay the rent she probably won’t pay this bill either .
      if she was evicted she knows about it. obviously you have never had renters.

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 7:33 pm
    • The tenant isn’t responsible for the repair, but they are responsible to report any issues to the landlord so they can get the issue repaired. If it was let go and not reported for months according the article. The big green spot when the rest of the yard is dead looking should have been reported.

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 8:24 pm
    • A tenant must make the landlord aware of a problem before the landlord can fix it. This woman has kids and grandkids living in that house. Did nobody notice a nice green patch of grass growing in the yard, which would have been bigger then the septic tank grass in the picture of the house that is posted? I’d like to see pictures of where the tree supposedly damaged the pipe. I don’t see many in the yard and I am not buying Tracy Thomas’s story at all. She was evicted and did not vacate. The notice was served to her daughter and Tracy Thomas is bucking the system again.

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 11:16 pm
  • Hey Tom you are not a scumbag people needs to know what kind of piece of crap she is kick your ******* to the curb

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 4:08 pm
  • Tom you do a great job reporting

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 3:47 pm
  • I’m betting the owner isn’t too happy about the condition of the front lawn.Bet the back looks even worse. renters couldn’t care less about the places they rent because they don’t have anything invested in them.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 3:23 pm
    • I guess you missed the part of the story that told you the home has been foreclosed on and is set for public auction. Looks like the owner didn’t care enough to pay the mortgage, doubt they care about the lawn.

      Thursday, 13 April 2017, 2:40 pm
  • Really Tom, this is an all time low for you and your website. This woman will be ridiculed by the low lives in this comment section.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 2:02 pm
    • She’s a low life who is playing the system. I thank RNRF for publishing this. I know a couple of families that will not live in one of my homes again.

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 11:17 pm
  • At least people will know not to rent to her after seeing this, it looks like she never pays her rent….

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 1:59 pm
    • The whole damn family is nothing but a bunch of users. Dope, drugs and people. They are all out for demselves.

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 9:48 pm
  • She may be a non rent paying dead beat, but that doesn’t justify that outrageous water bill being due her. We should be concerned about how the Utility Company handles this…………….it could easily happen to “Joe Citizen” next time.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 1:43 pm
    • Why is it the utilities problem. They didn’t plant the tree nor the sprinkler system and they don’t go past the meter in the ground. Grow up sassy and try to be a grown up not a Obama free loader who pushes off their responsibilities.

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 7:09 pm
    • Well that big green spot on the lawn, when all the other grass is dead looking would have been an indication to someone of average intellligence that they had a water leak. It is not the utilities fault the irrigation system was neglected. They provide the water at a set price.

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 8:18 pm
  • So she’s a freaking dead beat that takes advantage of the system, go figure

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 1:09 pm
  • Tom…..you have stooped to a new low that you would turn this article into such a negative story against the tenant who got the outrageous water bill.

    You are a real scumbag that you would bring up details about her previous eviction from a different residence when it has no affiliation with this story, this property or this water bill.

    You need to take some journalism classes because you are always trying to create bigger issues by reporting items that have no relevance to the original story.

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 1:08 pm
    • why does the truth make him a scumbag?

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 1:50 pm
    • Stop Trying To Destroy People? I’d call you an idiot but I won’t. I guess you failed to understand the whole story as reported. The “victim” came to RNRF. Tom did some investigating to try to help and low and behold he discovered a whole different story. Amazing that to you someone is a scumbag because you don’t agree with a story. Do you ever give a reporter an “attaboy” when it’s a good story? The problem is that we wait until someone does something we don’t agree with or like to slam them. How about we wait for someone to do something we agree with or like and say “thank you” Your selfish ego really shines in your post. Try to be kind. Try to laugh more. Try to set a positive example.
      Tom, thanks for trying to help this person. Sorry about what you discovered.

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 1:54 pm
    • Can you say “Repeat Offender”?????

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 3:29 pm
    • Me thinks the initials TT might be tied to a couple of these posts.

      Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 6:23 pm
      • I agree was thinking the same thing

        Thursday, 13 April 2017, 12:49 am
    • “Stop trying to destroy people”, How can you say her previous eviction has no relevance to the story when she is being evicted from the current residence. The woman is also obviously lying since she would have had to been served with papers for the eviction. She had to have known, she just decided to ignore it since this is her obvious M.O. based upon her previous evictions.

      In journalism you go after the whole story, not what one party wants you to write about. Tracy Thomas thought by contacting RNRF that maybe she could get the community behind her to help get the bill taken care of, instead the rest of the story was uncovered and she was exposed, that is good journalism.

      Maybe you are Tracy Thomas, just pissed because you were exposed.

      Thursday, 13 April 2017, 2:32 pm
  • You tell me all those folks are lying on you Ms Thomas. Something doesn’t add up

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 1:05 pm
  • Yo girl………why yoo ain’t pay yo muhfuggin rent? Wutchoo thank dis is ? Wutchoo fiddin’ ta doo ?

    Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 12:56 pm

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