SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Katherine Phillips bought her Victorian-style home on E. Henry St. three years ago, but upon moving in, she says it was not what she expected.
“We discovered immediately that nothing, absolutely nothing about the house was to code, a heap of violations,” says Phillips.
She says some of the defects included faulty wooden floors and pieces of the balcony falling off.
Phillips tells News 3 she began construction on the home immediately to fix the problems, something she says should not be her responsibility.
“At every step, we found that what was there before was super substandard, so if the city says they have codes and compliance, why would they approve that? That’s the beef,” says Phillips.
Phillips tells News 3, that instead of a homeowner, she feels more like a house flipper at the behest of the city.
“We find that Savannah is not really a community, what it is —is people who purchase homes and flip them; they fake it; they patch them up, and we fell into one of those,” says adds.
Even amongst construction, she says the city was giving her a hard time about bringing the home up to code, problems which she says she inherited.
She also tells News 3 that she believes that compliance is being applied arbitrarily in the neighborhood.
“Because we do look around us and we want to make sure we fit into the Victorian district, and we see what we consider unacceptable based on what has been imposed on us,” says Phillips.
When asked what advice she has to offer to anyone wanting to purchase a historic home, she says, “It isn’t worth it. It really isn’t.”
News 3 has reached out to Savannah City Development Services for comment, and we have not yet heard back.