'All I could do is just apologize': Regina's Usonia Homes says no money to fix hole

The owner of Usonia Homes in Regina says it is in a very difficult financial situation and hasn't been able to fix the problem of a giant hole on Thornton Avenue that's causing neighbours concern.

Company dug giant hole on Thornton Avenue but says unable to move forward on housing start

Zach Michell, owner of Usonia Homes, says the company is in a "very difficult" financial situation. (Glenn Reid/CBC)

The building company behind a giant construction hole beside a Regina man's home says it hasn't fixed the issues with the pit because it doesn't have any money.

Zach Michell, owner of Usonia Homes, a local home building company, said the company encountered some unforeseen problems that resulted in some big financial losses.   

"We've been struggling trying to make things better, but it's just as of late got way worse," Michell said, adding that he'd like to apologize. 

Dan Closs is not impressed with the property next door.

Usonia dug a large hole next to Dan Closs's home on Thornton Avenue, where the company intended to build a house. 

But soon Closs noticed some issues that caused him concern.

Closs said part of his fence and patio fell into the hole after heavy rainfall. 

He started to really worry when weeks went by with no progress on the building next door, and soil under his driveway started to fall away. 

A temporary safety fence was put up that partially extends onto Dan Closs's driveway.

Michell said he couldn't fix the problem with the hole because of the company's difficult financial situation. 

The company's money woes started to snowball, he said, when the company couldn't get funding for the home foundation that was supposed to go where the hole was. 

"It just kind of stopped right there and then from that day forward we just didn't have the finance to make anything happen," he said.

Financial fallout

Since then, Michell said the company had to let go of its five workers, and that he hasn't paid himself since December.

He was putting his hopes on getting investors to help out. 

This wasn't a malicious thing. We tried a business and it didn't work and we're sorry.- Zach Michell, owner of Usonia Homes

But now with the recent public attention, he said he worries those hopes might be squashed.

"I hope that's not the case, but it's most likely the case."

As for the hole, Michell said he is trying to work something out with the city to make the site safer for Closs and the other neighbours. 

To the people who have been affected by Usonia's financial problems, Michell said he's sorry.     

"I guess I just want to apologize to anyone that we've affected. This wasn't a malicious thing. We tried a business and it didn't work and we're sorry."