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Inspect all houses, not just rentals

Published: Saturday, May 17, 2014 1:15 a.m. CDT

This is in response to Mr. Popejoy’s May 10 letter titled “Owners need to keep up their property.”

There are good and bad landlords, good and bad renters, and good and bad homeowners. There are good and bad neighbors, wherever you live.

This big money that people assume landlords make is spent on taxes, insurance, roofs, furnaces, plumbing, etc., not to mention repairs when bad tenants move out – patching holes, painting, replacing windows, storm doors, and carpet, etc.

Good landlords screen tenants and try to get good renters who will take care of their property.

Who screens the homeowners?

We have one rental house where the homeowner feeds between 10 and 12 stray cats. The cats lived under the porch of our house. We got the cats out and closed up the opening. The homeowner opened it back up. We’ve closed it back up and hopefully the problem is taken care of, but it cost us a renter.

This rental inspection program is targeted only at rental property. I can have a beautiful rental property next door to a homeowner with missing shingles, a leaky roof, broken windows, trees that need trimmed or removed, and junk and debris all over the yard. This is OK with the city because they are “homeowners.” If this doesn’t classify as discrimination, I don’t know what does.

Anyone can call the health department or other proper authorities. It shouldn’t matter whether it’s rental property or lived in by the homeowner. There are ordinances in place to take care of those problems.

If Sterling and Rock Falls feel they need more rules and regulations and have all this extra money to pay people to enforce them, then so be it. Just make it fair to everyone. 

Let’s inspect every house – that would generate even more money for the cities, which is the bottom line, anyway.

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