Properties wind up abandoned for a variety of reasons -- foreclosure, death of the owner, divorce are among them. And sometimes owners who have moved away just want to hold on to a property here. The presence of such unmaintained houses is growing as the foreclosure crisis continues, said Christopher Niedt, academic director of the National Center for Suburban Studies at Hofstra University. And that translates into more and more neighborhoods across Long Island, and the nation, left with an eyesore in their midst -- and residents wondering why more of them can't be restored or razed or even condemned by the municipality.
Neighbors complaining about squatters illegally living in this abandoned house on Greenwood Road in North Babylon prompted action by the Town of Babylon. (Sept. 11, 2013)
Photo of an eyesore house, located at 808 Johnson Ave. in Ronkonkoma, that was damaged in a fire three years ago and has remained in its current state since then. Nicole Mammolito, of Ronkonkoma, contacted Newsday's Community Watchdog Column for help after the Town of Islip did not raze the house earlier this summer as planned.
This vacant house on Huntington Road in Huntington, seen recently, has been the subject of complaints since the 1990s. The owner entered into a “restoration agreement” that required shutting off electricity and putting the property up for sale, town spokesman A.J. Carter said; LIPA shut off power June 26, and the house was listed for sale on July 18.
This vacant canal-front house on South Hickory Street in Lindenhurst has not been maintained for several years; the house incurred damage from a fire a few years ago, according to Mayor Thomas Brennan. Tarp on the roof, which Brennan said was necessary to cover fire damage, is in tatters, and weeds run rampant.
Michael Calma lives next door to this vacant South Hickory Street property in Lindenhurst. The property has become a hangout for teenagers, says Calma, who fears for their safety, especially on the bulkhead. He has filed complaints with the village about the condition of the site.
Neighbors Fred Lloyd, James Robinson and Nathan Bright stand in front of an abandoned property in New Cassel, which is hidden from street view by overgrown bushes that are full of poison ivy. (July 28, 2012)