Saturday, January 12, 2008

Southern Kentucky paper reveals ripoff of retirees by builder, suggests need for stronger local code

One of the most controversial steps that an isolated, rural community can take is to impose restrictions on the use of property, such as zoning and building codes. While such measures are a fact of life for most Americans, they are not for many in rural areas, and sometimes those folks pay an unexpected price, as Sharon Burton of the Adair County Community Voice in Columbia, Ky., wrote this week:

"Wayne and Connie Feese visited Columbia numerous times spanning several decades to research their genealogy. When it came time to retire, they purchased a lot ... and [built] a house in Day Lily Meadows. Their dream retirement plan has since turned into a nightmare, and the Feeses would love nothing more than to be able to sell their home and leave town."(Encarta map)

The Feeses, who lived in Illinois, presumed the county had a building code for single-family homes and required a certificate of occupancy. It does not, despite pleas from the state and local building inspectors. Their home has major flaws that they are still spending to fix, though “We were told the inspector approved the house, the building inspector approved everything,” Wayne Feese told Burton.

Burton's analysis: "Forcing restrictions on citizens is never popular and shouldn’t be done lightly, but victims like Feese believe it’s also the county’s responsibility to protect its citizens. ... The lack of restrictions also costs the county. According to the Adair County Tourism Commission, every retiree who moves into Adair County is equal to 3.5 jobs." (Read more)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I am sorry to hear of this unfortunate case, especially since my hushand and I just bought property in rural Adair County. The article does not inspire much confidence in area contractors.