Landlords Oppose Required Inspections

11:24 PM, Sep 21, 2010   |    comments
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Greensboro, NC -- Monique Hayes-McCallum has a long list of concerns about the house she and her family rents.

Everything from exposed to wires to plumbing issues to kitchen countertops that aren't mounted are a problem in the house she has lived in since April.

"I had no idea what I was in store for until we actually moved in and signed a lease," said Hayes-McCallum. "I wasn't expecting to walk into a house where the floor has to be ripped out, the walls have to be torn down."

She said she didn't find out the house wasn't inspected and doesn't meet city standards until after she moved in and called an inspector herself.

Greensboro has a system in place that requires landlords to get rental properties inspected before renting them out. The ordinance is called the Rental Unit Certificate of Occupancy, or RUCO.

Hayes-McCallum's house doesn't meet RUCO standards, and an inspections report lists many violations. She's concerned about the safety of her eight-year-old daughter.

"She doesn't even go in her room hardly except to get her school clothes, she sleeps either in the living room with the TV or in my youngest son's room," Hayes-McCallum said.

There is some resistance to RUCO. Marlene Sanford, president of the Triad Real Estate and Building Industry Coalition, said it's a waste of money, time, and energy inspecting the majority of rental properties because only a small percentage of them are problem properties.

Sanford said many landlords want to see RUCO changed or done away with all together.

Beth McKee-Huger, executive director of the Greensboro Housing Coalition, said RUCO is about keeping the tenants safe.

"The ordinance is very effective at getting properties that are in substandard condition brought up to standard," she said.

"RUCO is really effective at preventing problems from getting to the point that this house is," she said, referring to Hayes-McCallum's house.

Hayes-McCallum plans to move out of her house and said she is fighting her landlord in court. She wants other tenants to be aware of RUCO.

She said, "I want to ensure that whoever moves into this house, moves into a safe house for their family."

 

 

 

 

 

 

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