Remember the recent multi-billion dollar bank settlement? Payments are about to be made, and states are figuring out what to do with the money. In Ohio, about $75 million will be targeted at abandoned homes; specifically, tearing them down.
This might sound shocking, but it’s not unusual. Many cities have used tear-down programs to deal with blight, neighborhood decline, and excess housing stock. All of these things have been common urban experiences during the past several years.
Why not save the homes? Sometimes, it’s just a economic question. If the cost of repairing the home is greater than the cost of tearing it down, most cities opt for demolition. Other issues include crimes that occur in abandoned homes, as well as the negative pressure on surrounding property values.
NPR’s Morning Edition did an excellent 4-minute segment on Ohio’s program. I’d recommend giving it a listen if you’re interested how cities deal with property abandonment.