Before the applications go to the inspection companies, they have to clear zoning, and that's where some folks are running into some unexpected legal issues. The process catches individuals who unknowingly purchase properties that have an illegal number of units with them. Then, that burdens them with the requirement of making that building legal.
Erie City Council adopted the inspection law late last year to reduce blighted properties and improve safety. City officials were expecting to find that they're about 8,000 rental units in the city, but surprisingly, as of Tuesday, they've received the fees and applications from 11,800 owners.
Now, the current owners of these units may have to go through the zoning hearing board and pay the price for code updates.