Neighborhood Nuisance: Neglected house attracts unwelcome guests

Published: Oct. 30, 2023 at 6:18 PM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - An abandoned house in Toledo is causing major safety concerns for the woman who lives next door. She reached out to 13 Action News for help.

“We’ve been here 10 years, and nothing’s been done. We’ve had so many issues,” Heather Waters, who lives next door to the abandoned house on Camden Street said.

Waters, her daughter and the two other young girls she babysits spend their days next to the neglected property.

“One is ten and two are nine,” Waters said. “They don’t like to play in the backyard sometimes at night because of the backyard there. It scares them and they don’t like it.”)

It’s not just the spray-painted, overgrown exterior that worries Waters; it’s what goes on inside the house.

“[There are] people coming in and out of it. Drug addicts,” Waters said. “There was one time they were here for like two or three days, just in and out, in and out. I was calling the cops, and they would come when they were gone so was nothing they could do about it.”

People aren’t the only problem.

“The rodents, the snakes during the summer time, with the backyard the way it is and the mice now,” Waters said. “Gobs of mice. Luckily, my cat over there, she’s taking care of them.”

Waters and her mother have been trying to get the City of Toledo to take action for years.

“My mom made the first call, I’m going to say, seven years ago,” Waters said. “We try to call, and they just don’t do nothing about it,” Waters said.

Waters reached out to 13 Action News for help. We researched housing records and contacted the last listed property owner. She says the house doesn’t belong to her anymore, but a city representative says it does.

A city representative said an inspector visited the property Monday, and is issuing nuisance orders requiring the owner to clean up the property. If she does not, a city crew will be sent out to take care of the high grass and graffiti, in addition to boarding up the house and cleaning up the overall property.

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