Fire heavily damaged the Timber Ridge Inn on Cookeville Highway near the Putnam-DeKalb county line Tuesday afternoon.
DeKalb County Fire Chief Donny Green said the owner of the rental units called 911 about 1:30 p.m. after noticing a strong smoke odor.
“When we arrived, the second floor was heavily involved,” Green said. “It took us about 30 minutes to knock it down.” Green said three rental units are on that floor, but two were unoccupied.
The resident in the third unit was not at home at the time of the blaze.
Putnam County sent two tankers to the scene to assist with water supply.
Green said the second floor sustained heavy fire and smoke damage, and the first floor had water damage.
He said the cause of the fire is still undetermined, but officials believe it started in one of the unoccupied units.