There are a lot of reasons for a property to be condemned. They usually relate to health and safety issues such as sanitation, electrical, plumbing or heat & air. They can also include such things as doors, windows, roofing, siding, etc.
You can find out what the code vioations are that led to the condemnation by calling 311 and getting connected to the codes department.
If a house is condemned, that means that it is unfit or unsafe for human habitation. Frequently, tenants of a rental property trying to get the landlord to fix something will "show him" by calling the codes department. It backfires on the tenants because if the codes department, condemns the house, no one, including the tenants can live there. So, the answer to the question is....you cannot live there while working on it.
Another issue is that sometimes if one thing is noted for a codes violation, depending on the violations, sometimes they will make you bring everything up to code.
Let me know if there is anyhing else I can do to help.
REALTORÂ®, Broker, e-PRO,GRI
Hop Bailey Co.
310 Forest Park Blvd
Knoxville, TN 37919
"The Extra Mile Is Never Extra"