Residents ordered to leave Muncie hotel declared unfit for human habitation

Residents fear they will be forced out on street

MUNCIE, Ind. - Several Muncie families are worried they will soon be out on the street after the city ordered the old motel they live in to be shut down.

Officials said the Budget Inn Motel has been an eyesore for years and residents who call it home have until Sunday to vacate.

City officials said the building’s owner has received several warnings and citations since 2008, but has failed to make improvements. Residents said the owner also failed to let them know the evacuation order was coming.

The hotel has seen better days -- city officials called the building unfit for humans -- but residents said they don’t have many options.

"They gave us a paper of places we can call and things to do, but there are so many places that have closed down (or) that they are full," resident Brandy Reum said.

Muncie's building commissioner said the property is crawling with bedbugs and safety code violations, and the dilapidation requires evacuation. 

More than a dozen families have similar concerns after the city issued the order last week and declared the roof, stairs, walls -- everything -- unsafe.

Brett and Brandy McDonald and their three kids are scrambling to find a temporary shelter that will house them all together. For Brett McDonald, the painful thought of splitting up is too much.

"You know, I don't care where we go as long as we're all together. That's all that matters to me," McDonald said.

The building manager said all of the tenants will get a refund for a partial month’s rent.

The property owner lives in New Jersey and did not return any calls Tuesday night.

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