Rain damaged Rockford home had no construction permits - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Rain damaged Rockford home had illegal construction projects inside

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We didn't see any tornadoes here in the Rockford area, but heavy rain was enough to damage at least one south Rockford home.  

Sunday, 3901 15th Ave. housed 11 people, including 5 children. The building has since been condemned.

The building's landlord had been working to fix the roof. The job wasn't finished. Sunday's rain seeped in, soaking the ceiling until it collapsed.

In other areas of the house, there's evidence of even more partially completed construction projects.

"There were some bedrooms created in the basement without proper egress, there was evidence of overcrowding. we've also found some electrical issues there," says City of Rockford Building Code Official,   Seth Sommer.

On the outside, the roof's overhang is supported only by a 4x4 and a car jack. Rockford city hall says the building's owner did not have a permit for any of this work. Because of this, the owner of the building faces several $250 fines.

"At this point we will not lift the condemnation until all the repairs are done under permit and inspected and found to be code compliant," says Sommer.  

Sommer says that sometimes takes weeks, or even months, depending on how quickly the building's owner completes the work.

One woman who lives in the building, and her 5 foster children, had to leave all of their belongings and look for shelter somewhere else.

That's where the Community Action Agency stepped in.

"Last year alone we provided nearly 200 hotel nights for temporary housing," says Owen Carter, Community Action Agency Coordinator

Many of those are tenants forced from their homes when buildings are condemned.

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