Residents forced out of motel struggling to find places to live

Residents forced out of Knoxville motel struggling to find places to live

Posted:
Sixteen families were forced to move from the Sunshine Inn on Rutledge Pike, formerly known as Family Inn, with little notice and no place to go. Sixteen families were forced to move from the Sunshine Inn on Rutledge Pike, formerly known as Family Inn, with little notice and no place to go.
CAC was able to pay for 16 rooms at the Days Inn on Asheville Highway as a temporary fix. CAC was able to pay for 16 rooms at the Days Inn on Asheville Highway as a temporary fix.
"I go month to month. If I had known this was going to happen I would have not paid my rent last week and just moved somewhere else with that rent money," said John Coolidge. "I go month to month. If I had known this was going to happen I would have not paid my rent last week and just moved somewhere else with that rent money," said John Coolidge.
"We were asked to see if we could step in and just help these folks coming up with a plan on where and how to relocate," said Misty Goodwin with the CAC. "We were asked to see if we could step in and just help these folks coming up with a plan on where and how to relocate," said Misty Goodwin with the CAC.

By WHITNEY GOOD
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - More than a dozen people are still looking for permanent homes after the motel they were living in shut down.

Sixteen families were forced to move from the Sunshine Inn on Rutledge Pike, formerly known as Family Inn, with little notice and no place to go.

"Ten o'clock in the morning, knocked on my door and said y'Yu got a couple hours to get out of here.' I looked at her and said my rent's paid till March 3. She said they're closing the place down," said John Coolidge.

With just a couple hours' notice, Coolidge and 15 other residents of the Sunshine Inn were told to leave.

The building was going to be condemned.

The problem for Coolidge and a few others is that they rely on Social Security checks to pay rent, which Coolidge says he paid right before he was kicked out.

"I go month to month. If I had known this was going to happen I would have not paid my rent last week and just moved somewhere else with that rent money," said Coolidge.

The Community Action Committee was notified of the situation by KUB.

"We were asked to see if we could step in and just help these folks coming up with a plan on where and how to relocate," said Misty Goodwin with the CAC.

They were able to pay for 16 rooms at the Days Inn on Asheville Highway as a temporary fix.

"You can imagine for 16 rooms at a hotel, that's been really expensive," said Goodwin.

It is costing them so much that two weeks is all they can offer, leaving people like Coolidge to wait about a week for his next check with still no place to go.

CAC officials say the money just is not there to offer more help.

Now Coolidge and others are threatening legal action against the motel owners to get their rent payments back.

"If I wasn't paying my rent that's one thing, but like I said I can show you all my rent receipts," said Coolidge.

The CAC said they will try to help fund some of the move in costs when they find the people new places to live, but they said most of those costs will fall back on the residents themselves.

Coolidge and some of the other residents are working with legal aid to see what can be done to get their rent money back.

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