WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) — West Virginia’s next legislative session is about to begin and a state senator in our area is making it a goal to fight dilapidated homes in a new way.

Senator Ryan Weld says as an attorney he has noticed people who purchase homes at delinquent tax sales. They then promise these rundown homes to low-income families that, after paying strict rent for a set span of years, the renters then get the keys.

However, Weld says rarely does this dream scenario play out.

After missing one payment, those families are kicked out and the cycle continues with the next family holding onto the same dreams.

Eventually these rundown properties become the city’s mess to sell.

Weld says with some simple safeguards, like what we see in neighboring states, less people will be on the streets and more homes will be livable.

It would require an inspection of these properties. And so, if you live in a municipality that has a building enforcement code or building inspector, these types of residences would have to be inspected before somebody could live in them.

Because, what I’ve found as the city attorney of Wellsburg is that these properties weren’t in any sort of condition that somebody should have moved into in the first place. But, someone did.

Sen. Ryan Weld, (R) West Virginia

The legislation would also require these agreements to be recorded at the courthouse.

It would not prevent people from entering into an agreement but he hopes it would protect families from predatory investments.

The first day of session kicks off January 12.