Protests on behalf of home owners in unincorporated Will County have resulted in a moratorium on the county’s pre-inspections until the issue can be resolved, the Chicago Tribune reported.
Tom Joseph, a local government affairs director for the Illinois Association of REALTORS® (IAR), says in some instances, county building inspectors have made “full-scale” inspections when they should have been limited to the “scope of permitted work.”
According to the article, the Will County land use department director says the building code allows pre-inspections before issuing building permits, usually in situations when homes have been foreclosed, suffered catastrophic losses or the owners failed to secure building permits. As a result of IAR’s objections, county officials have agreed to stop conducting pre-inspections until the issue is resolved.
Joseph says the code doesn’t allow for at-large inspections and that it should include:
- protection from unreasonable searches (Fourth Amendment rights),
- permission from the property owners and
- clear explanations of what will be inspected in advance of any inspection.
Joseph says late last year, an inspector asked a contractor – instead of the home owner – for permission to enter the home. Also, in two other incidents when home owners didn’t give consent for pre-inspections, they were given multiple citations.