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Faulty construction leaves special needs child without a room

Posted: 5:00 PM, Aug 14, 2019
Updated: 2019-08-14 21:23:46-04
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A family is looking for help after shoddy craftsmanship on an addition to their home forced their disabled daughter to move to a smaller room in the house.

Five people lived in the Nagib family home in South Nashville when the conditions in a room they added onto their home became too dangerous to live in.

The family lived in the home since 2007, but decided to build an extra, larger, room onto the side of the house. It was meant to accomodate the family's daughter, Voriena, who is missing her 17th chromosome and has Miller Dieker Syndrome. The family moved to America from Egypt and have been trying to make a living.

Voriena often has several seizures per day, is confined to a wheel chair, and can't speak or take care of herself. She has a 24-hour nurse and requires constant care.

"She can't walk or talk or do anything," said Neven Nagib, Voriena's mother. Nagib said she knew her daughter needed extra space for better care.

In 2012, the family hired a builder to do the work. According to the family, he was paid $50,000 to build a 25 by 14 foot room with a walk in closet and bathroom specifically built for someone with disabilities. After about four months, they noticed mold was already starting to grow in the bathroom. Now, six years later, the floor is unstable and caving in.

The addition was built directly on the ground. There's no concrete that was poured and no crawl space underneath the building.

The non-profit organization Tucker's House heard about the problems the Nagib family are facing and decided to step in. They're bringing in several companies to tear down the addition and rebuild it so Voriena can receive proper care.

"When you walk in here, you can see the floor gets kind of spongy, but you can see the floor is actually falling apart," said Sunny Rosanbalm, founder of Tucker's House.

Tucker's House works to help families with disabled children make their homes safer and wheelchair accessible - in hopes of creating an environment as where a child can be as independent as possible.

Rosanbalm blames the original builder who worked on the addition.

"If he did this properly, this family would not be having this problem," she said.

A Crowdrise fundraising site was started for Voriena and her family.

Also, Rosanbalm has set up companies to help with heating, plumbing, electrical installation, demolition of the addition and pouring the new concrete foundation.

However, she says they still have needs to complete the work. They include getting someone to install drywall, work on the trim for the home, paint for the home and new siding.

Rosanbalm hopes work will start on the addition in the next two weeks.

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Consumer investigator Jennifer Kraus looked into the company that did the work on that house. Turns out, they didn't have the required license to do it.

Whenever you've got a project over $25,000, the company doing the work must have a valid state contractor's license. Neither R-2 Construction nor its owner, Ron Rice, did.

The state Contractors Board said though that since the work was done six years ago, too much time has passed for them to pursue a case.

And, here's another red flag we found. The contractor did not go to Metro Codes himself to get the building permit as most contractors generally do. Instead he had the homeowners pull a self-permit.

Ron Rice admitted to NewsChannel 5 Investigates he knew the Codes department would question whether he had a valid license and refuse to give him a permit since he didn't have one.

The bottom line: always check with the state Contractor's Board to find out if your contractor is licensed.

The board has more information on how to protect yourself when hiring a contractor and what to do if you feel you've been taken. Click here to learn more .