The Albany County sheriff's says "controlled burns" are typical in the area, but a call over the weekend was anything but normal.
A property owner told authorities he was planning a controlled burn at his property in Berne -- what they didn't know was he was planning to burn down his entire house.
Sheriff Craig Apple said the homeowner wanted to demolish the vacant home so he could build a new house on the land.
The fire prompted several fire companies to respond Sunday.
Apple said the fire was illegal and dangerous for first responders
"I think it was a matter of he was just trying to do something that was the easy way out and the cheaper way out, and needless to say he jeopardized a lot of lives when he did that," Apple said.
The homeowner was charged by the DEC for unlawful open burn. Apple says additional charges are possible.