CitiApartments’ rebranding to FirstApartments (or First Apartments, or firstapts) continues unabated, as a tipster forwarded an email received when she emailed someone at a Citi email address:

From: nobody@citiapartments.com
Date: Sat, Oct 24, 2009 at 12:04 PM
Subject: @citiapartments.com is being disconnected
To: REDACTED

Please note that the citiapartments.com e-mail address that you have submitted to will be disconnected soon. Please contact the recipient immediately to provide you with their new e-mail address.

Fortunately, we’ve been forwarded enough emails from former CitiApartments FirstApartments (now First Apartments, or firstapts) tenants who are being denied uncontested security deposits (stay tuned for those stories!) that we know that the new nomenclature is first initial last name @firstapts.com.

Deputy City Atty Yvonne Mere, who’s on the city’s case against Citi (or First Apartments or FirstApartments or firstapts). Says that this naming change “is an interesting fact.” (She’s always so cagey!) She says that in a recent deposition taken from David Reynal, it was confirmed that all the signs saying “CitiApartments” have been removed from properties owned by that company, though she noted that “when you walk into their foyer, there’s still an etched glass sign that reads ‘CitiApartments’.”

Mere refused to speculate on the reason behind the name change (which should not stop you all from doing it), but when I pressed her, asking do you think this is a way for people who’ve heard about CitiApartments to get suckered in without realizing it? she said “I would like to think that the San Francisco tenant community is sufficiently well informed that they can see past this.” We certainly hope so!

Mere also tells us that “the (the City’s) case (against CitiApartments (or First Apartments or FirstApartments or firstapts)) is chugging along,” with the next hearing scheduled for December 18. Will Christmas come early for the City Attorney’s office? Probably not — at this stage in the game, they’ve had to resort to a motion to compel CitiApartments (or First Apartments or FirstApartments or firstapts) to comply with discovery — that is, they are now at the point where they have to take certain steps to get CitiApartments (or First Apartments or FirstApartments or firstapts) to cough up documents necessary to the case.

So, while the end is no means near for this case (and, therefore, for CitiApartments (or First Apartments or FirstApartments or firstapts)), what can one do to make sure folks go into a business relationship with CitiApartments (or First Apartments or FirstApartments or firstapts) with their eyes open? Our suggestion: fulfill Mere’s hopes about the tenant community, and make sure everyone you know is aware that First Apartments or FirstApartments or firstapts is CitiApartments. You people are smart, you can do it.

the author

Eve Batey is the editor and publisher of the San Francisco Appeal. She used to be the San Francisco Chronicle's Deputy Managing Editor for Online, and started at the Chronicle as their blogging and interactive editor. Before that, she was a co-founding writer and the lead editor of SFist. She's been in the city since 1997, presently living in the Outer Sunset with her husband, cat, and dog. You can reach Eve at eve@sfappeal.com.

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  • Fred

    Thanks for covering these clumsy attempts to fool renters and stiff them on their deposits. Over at the Chron, their entire archive has only 7 hits for “CitiApartments” and nothing more recent than Sept 9, 2009.

  • Fred

    Thanks for covering these clumsy attempts to fool renters and stiff them on their deposits. Over at the Chron, their entire archive has only 7 hits for “CitiApartments” and nothing more recent than Sept 9, 2009.

  • Greg Dewar

    High five to SF Appeal for continuing to follow this story. I don’t see any Big Media people doing so, and I don’t see anyone else in the alternative press covering it like this. It may seem incremental but this is how you smoke out a rat like CitiWhateverthefraktheyrecalled Apartments.

    By continuing to shine the light of truth on these folks, we, the public are informed and can make better decisions about where to rent. And it ensures that these clowns can’t hide behind lame ass name changes.

    Wow. Journalism that serves the public good. What a great idea. Again, I’ll continue to light my lighter in honor of y’all because YOU ROCK.

  • Greg Dewar

    High five to SF Appeal for continuing to follow this story. I don’t see any Big Media people doing so, and I don’t see anyone else in the alternative press covering it like this. It may seem incremental but this is how you smoke out a rat like CitiWhateverthefraktheyrecalled Apartments.

    By continuing to shine the light of truth on these folks, we, the public are informed and can make better decisions about where to rent. And it ensures that these clowns can’t hide behind lame ass name changes.

    Wow. Journalism that serves the public good. What a great idea. Again, I’ll continue to light my lighter in honor of y’all because YOU ROCK.