Various City Departments are putting into place various ways to work WITH residents:
–Permit fees for folks within the Fountain Avenue Revitalization Area are generally waived.
— The inspector is available to sign off on most cost efficient way to address structural issues and to answer questions about acceptable options for addressing others.
–If asked, inspections staff will let you know about their experiences with the timeliness and workmanship of a contractor you’re considering.
–The inspector has flexibility in working with you on a timeline for completing work. There is not a set “ticking clock” for homeowners. Instead there should be an agreed-on course of work and general timeline for completion. With reasonable explanations, changes are allowed.
The inspector would rather see work done well and done right than just done quickly.
Staying in contact with the inspector is YOUR responsibility, and it is the KEY to having him work WITH you. Without contact, the inspector has only his enforcement tools (fines and such) to use to get you to work on your home.
–Planning staff are available to answer your questions and to guide you in making exterior improvements to your home. Staff will be able to okay some exterior work themselves and will be able to guide you through the process of getting HARC approval if needed.
–The Planning Department has in place a 15% reimbursement for rehabilitations of at least $50,000 that have been “permitted” and that are done by homeowners who owned their house as of 7/8/08 and live in the house. (A 10% reimbursement is available for others whose homes have had at least $50,000 in rehabilitation work done)
–The Planning Department is considering a grant program for homeowners who earn at or below 120% of the Area Median Income and who need at least $30,000 in work on their homes. While not finalized, the program MIGHT provide 1/3 of the project cost as a grant.
–The Planning Department is finishing a HOME grant through the Kentucky Housing Corporation, building homes for new homebuyers. A new application in 2011 MAY include a request for funds to help current low-income homeowners rehab their homes along with building homes for new homebuyers.
If you, are considering ANY exterior work OR thing you MIGHT qualify for one of the incentive or grant programs, call and talk to Planning Department staff.
–If you want the sidewalk in front of your home replaced, Public Works will do it upon request for only the cost of the materials. No labor charge. (The City has a sidewalk master plan, and all sidewalks and curbs will eventually be addressed as part of this plan.)
–If you have cleanout or cleanup to do as part of your rehab plan, please note that the garbage collectors have been instructed to pick up a small, neatly-packaged group of materials in addition to the rollout without an additional charge: The additional materials should be about the same volume as the rollout and should be contained in a box, bag, or can so they can be picked up easily. Larger or messy piles of debris will only be picked up later for an additional fee.