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City Inspecting Properties Near Marshall University's Campus Throughout Summer

Reported by: Send eMail Darrah Wilcox
Reported: Jun. 16, 2014 4:11 PM EDT
Updated: Jun. 17, 2014 9:48 AM EDT
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Housing Inspections
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Huntington , Cabell County , West Virginia

As an incoming college senior, Cameron Lyons says he's learned how to spot decent student housing and a good landlord. "If they won't even take the time to clean up the house when you weren't living there, then who's to say that they're going to help you out when you are living there," he said.

"Make sure that they're cooperative, and if your house is good enough when you move in and they're cooperative, then you won't have any problems," continued Lyons.

That's why he agrees with the city conducting housing inspections near Marshall University's campus. "I think it's good to hold the landlords accountable," said Lyons.

Employees with the city Fire Marshal's Office the Huntington Police Department's Code Enforcement Unit and building inspection in the Department of Public Works teamed up for inspections at properties between 12th and 22nd Streets and 3rd and 7th Avenues.

In the first week inspectors looked at 61 structures consisting of 204 units. They found 32 violations ranging from easy fixes like high grass to more serious ones like leaky faucets and improper wiring. Huntington Communications Director Bryan Chambers said,
"We want to see the property owners resolve these deficiencies."

Chambers says the goal is to assure safe, quality housing for the students. "It's what we expect. It's what their parents expect," he said.

There was one Do Not Occupy order issued for an unoccupied fraternity house along 5th avenue and also several properties with fire code violations. Chambers said 18 properties were put on notice to upgrade their fire protections services, like smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.

Chambers says they're focusing on housing near campus while most students are home for the summer but expect to branch out inspections across the city. "All of our residents deserve quality housing," he said.

He said property owners should have plenty of time for repairs and upgrades before the fall semester begins in late August.



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