After more than 70 days without home inspections due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the Belleville city council has finally reinstated furloughed inspectors, stopped issuing temporary certificates of occupancy and resumed home inspections for residential real estate transactions.

Illinois REALTORS® local Governmental Affairs Director Ron Deedrick played an important role in the situation by advocating for the safe resumption of the inspection process with the Belleville mayor and other city leaders. While Deedrick and Belleville-area REALTORS® understood that the COVID-19 outbreak created safety concerns, they eventually became worried about potential disputes if Belleville still wanted to inspect homes after transactions were completed.

In late May, as other municipalities began to reopen for business and stop issuing temporary occupancy permits, Deedrick and the local REALTORS® wondered whether buyers or sellers would be held responsible for repairs identified during delayed inspections.

“While we are not proponents of government entering our homes, in this instance, I found myself advocating for inspections to take place,” says Deedrick. “For more than a week, I tried to reach the mayor with our concerns. After a conference call, we were able to get a friendlier inspection process. And at the city council meeting June 15, the inspection division was recalled from furlough.  No inspections had been done since April 3.”

Inspectors at the Belleville Health, Housing and Building Department continue to inspect homes that were purchased during the furlough when temporary occupancy permits were issued, according to the Belleville website.