Property owner finds makeshift tent on property while showing it

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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Showing properties is all in a day's work for Taylor Hood.

Masks, drug paraphernalia and trash were found in and around a tent on property for sale in Huntington, West Virginia.

"Trying to find a tenant for the property for a couple weeks now,” he said.

On Tuesday morning it was business as usual, until he found something that didn’t belong.

"It kind of catches you off guard because we were just lifting the gate so that we could get some light inside so we could see a little bit better, and staring at us was a mask hanging from the tent,” Hood said. "You weren’t expecting to see it -- it was shocking.”

It was also a surprise for the tenant he was showing the property to.

"I just saw a tent up and looking like somebody is living there. I was a little concerned about going through the building. Were they in the building?” prospective tenant Les Ferguson said.

Hood says trash around the property is not uncommon, but finding a tent with drug paraphernalia around it tells him the problem is getting worse, and he's worried trespassers will create obstacles for getting tenants in the future.

"It’s tough to show up every time you’re wanting to show it to a prospective tenant, and you never know what to expect because you could come across someone. You could find someone on your property, you could come across where someone’s been leaving needles or leaving trash and debris,” he said.

Moving forward, Hood says they’re going to invest in more security to prevent this from happening again.

Fortunately, the prospective tenant was understanding and says he loves the property.

"Unfortunately it’s something that everybody's got to deal with day to day, city to city. Hopefully we can overcome it,” Ferguson said.

The property owner did call Huntington Police, who said they would come, but before they got there the person who was living there came and collected their things.