Uprooted Gilbert family gets help moving after Republic story
A local moving company extended a helping hand to a Gilbert family Saturday after The Arizona Republic reported the family was being forced to move out of affordable apartments to make way for new tenants willing to pay higher rents.
Freddy Rosales, his wife and teenage daughter — along with his two adult daughters and their children — had to leave their homes after a California company bought the complex at a prime location near downtown Gilbert. The company plans to renovate and double the rent.
In total, the company told a dozen households to leave the complex by the end of October. Many worried about finding new homes in a short time at a reasonable cost.
A recent study found most tenants in the Phoenix area don't earn enough to afford a decent apartment. Rental rates are expected to keep rising as Maricopa County experiences an affordable housing crisis.
After Justin Hodge, the president of Phoenix moving company Muscular Moving Men, heard the story, he jumped into action.
"I never like to see families get uprooted," Hodge said. "This is not a move that was in the cards for the Rosales family. ...We felt strongly we needed to get involved and help them land on their feet."
The company has donated moving assistance to Hope Women's Center, the Glendale Police Department and the Phoenix Children's Hospital's annual toy drive, he said.
"We subscribe to the theory (that) the givers gain," Hodge said.
Muscular Moving Men sent a truck and two employees to bring the family's living room furniture, mattresses and other items to their new home.
The Rosales family had found a place a mile away at Country Villa Apartments just a few days before their move-out deadline.
"We can't thank them (the moving company) enough," said Freddy Rosales, who previously had hurt his back moving boxes. "We couldn't have done it all by ourselves. ... This restores your faith."
His wife, Susie Rosales, broke into tears as she recounted the stress over moving and the relief when the moving company and others stepped up.
She said the family tries to help others when it can, including stopping anytime they see a stranded motorist.
"My mom always told me you need to help people regardless. God will repay you in his mysterious ways," she said. "I'm so grateful."
Employees at Country Villa Apartments had also heard about the families looking for homes. They offered to waive application fees and provide temporary rental discounts, Susie said.
Although the units at the new complex are costlier than the previous location, the Rosaleses said they will manage by moving into two units instead of three.
In another stroke of good fortune, the units are next door, so Susie can continue babysitting her grandchildren.
"For people to come out and offer us help out of the goodness of their hearts, it totally broke my heart," she said.
Mike Gidson, one of the movers, said he was happy to assist.
"I was really glad when I heard the company was doing this," he said. "It shows their big heart."