Neighbors Fed Up with Charred Remains of Isaac Hayes' Former Home

Neighbors Fed Up with Charred Remains of Isaac Hayes' Former Home

Cordova neighbors are fired up over a vacant, rundown home. The late Isaac Hayes's former house went up in flames more than a year ago, and neighbors want it torn down.
MEMPHIS, TN (localmemphis.com) - Cordova neighbors are fired up over a vacant, rundown home. The late Isaac Hayes's former house went up in flames more than a year ago, and neighbors want it torn down.

The home burned last May, and over the last 14 months it's grown worse and worse; nothing has been done to it.

"None of us as a neighborhood association seems to understand why it's taking so long.," said State Rep. Steve McManus (R-Cordova).

Neighbor Jeff Acuff added, "You would have thought that it would have already been torn down and rebuilt. Once again this is a nice neighborhood you'd think that would have already been taken care of by now."

Residents near the house on Riveredge Drive hate looking at the eyesore. The charred remains and busted windows get worse every month. They don't know what to do about the mess.

"Is it a county issue, a city issue, or the owner's issue?" asked McManus.

Code Enforcement Deputy Director Onzie Horne says the City of Memphis is working to get the home condemned, but he's been met with one problem after another.

One reason is that the fire is still under a criminal investigation by the fire department. Horne also says the home owners aren't co-operating with the city.

The home's owner, Kenneth Peters, stated, "We're waiting on the insurance company; they are supposed to pay for tearing it down."

Horne says Peters won't tell the city which insurance company they're using. Until they find that out, that's also delaying getting a court order to take care of the property.

"We got a letter saying if they had to tear it down they'd put a lien on our property. That's fine with us, let them tear it down," Peters said.

Horne says if the city has to pay to tear the house down could cost well over $10,000 in taxpayer dollars. That's money he says they could recoup eventually, but in the short term would prevent them from tearing down other blighted properties.

There is an administrative hearing to condemn the property later this month. Code Enforcement hopes to find out who the insurance company is and have the owners in court before that.

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