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Ashley Rodrigue / Eyewitness News
Email: arodrigue@wwltv.com | Twitter: @ashleyrwwl

COVINGTON, La. - Homes that are supposed to help families get back on their feet are knocking some to their knees in repair costs.

Homeowners in a Habitat for Humanity neighborhood in Covington say the problems aren't normal.

'Door rot, the seam down the middle of the house, lighting issues, electric issues, rotten steps, floor rotting,' said Darlene Fischer.

Fischer lives in Unity Square, which is two streets consisting of 24 modular homes built in 2007. The buildings, which were shipped in and put together, were a quick way to help with the housing crunch after Hurricane Katrina, and is not the normal method for home building that Habitat usually invests in.

That kind, considered 'stick-built,' isn't holding up very well for Monique Bacas, who lives a few streets away from the modular homes.

She says nails are coming through the ceiling and, 'My side door leaks when it rains, and the siding is falling off the front of the house.'

Habitat for Humanity says it knows about the problems here in the 24 modular homes. They also understand what's happening is not typical wear and tear, so they're stepping up to help with repairs.

'Yea these are some things we want to address as an organization, so in our budget, that began July 1, we put in $50,000 toward repairing homes,' Habitat for Humanity-St. Tammany West CEO Jeff St. Romain said.

That money is currently being raised in donations, but Habitat is also asking the homeowners to step up too.

'We're just going in there, we're going to fix everything and we're asking them to put up $100,' said St. Romain.

Some don't think that's fair.

'I think Habitat should maintain because they put us in these homes, so if it's not correct, they should make sure it's correct, you know, so we can maintain our homes,' said Fischer.

Bacas said, 'I thought it was supposed to help the people, not put them in a position where they have home repairs they can't really do anything about.'

But Habitat says its program is a partnership, between organization and homeowners, and it hopes together the community can get back on the right track.

To help the St. Tammany West Habitat with this project, visit their website, www.habitatstw.org.

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