What’s being done about the abandoned home problem

vacant property
WDTN Photo/Jordan Burgess

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — Efforts to tear down vacant homes in Dayton will soon get a boost from some federal funds.

In the meantime demolitions have slowed.

We found it costs about $11,000 on average to demolish a vacant home and the process can take six to nine months because of the paperwork involved.

“Even if the property owner is deceased and has no other relatives we still have to follow our rules and regulations and the state’s rules and regulations,” says Acting Housing Division Manager Kevin Powell.

Dayton tore down a record number of properties last year, nearly 650, thanks in large part to state grant money that’s now run out.

That extra federal grant money is on the way but the strings attached to it will slow the process for using it.

“We started those a couple months ago putting the paperwork through so when the funding does come through we’re ready to start taking those down,” Powell says of the homes that now have to be owned by the Montgomery County Landbank for the funds to be used.

With an estimated 6,500 vacant properties in Dayton alone, we wanted to know what it will take for the area to get the vacant issue under control.

“There is an end to it,” Powell says. “We have to continue each year taking down a certain amount of properties and eventually we’ll have a majority of the problem down.”

Officials hope to start the demolitions with the federal grant money in the next few months.

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