I was shocked to discover that the beautiful house above, one of a pair on the west side of Nebraska Avenue in between Gasconade and Osage streets burned at some point after I photographed them in October of 2019 (fourth and fifth photo down, the burned house is in the fifth photo). But what matters more is that the tidy home next door, which according to property records was owner-occupied, was badly damaged in the fire.
I asked around whether the fire started in the abandoned house or the owner-occupied house, and I wasn’t able to get an answer. But I did learn that the City had been working for a long time to keep the abandoned house boarded up, and the New Mexico-based speculator who owns it hasn’t bothered to pay the property taxes for three years, so taxpayers will probably soon be the proud new owners of the burned out wreck. I get tired of people telling me that the City of St. Louis doesn’t care. That’s not true; there are so many employees working so hard, but it’s like fighting off the Mongol Hordes of crooks and thoughtless, uncaring, greedy people who may very well have never visited Missouri yet causing trouble here in “Flyover Country.” The people who lived in the house next door matter.
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I so agree ,and wish that some SERIOUS fines and negative repercussions were applied to these uncaring, absentee property owners who don’t keep up their properties.
There are real estate sharks and private equity firms buying up properties all over the country. They buy them cheap, do a quick fix and rent them out for ridiculous amounts. They’ve figured out that the new generation will be forever renters as the cost of purchasing a home is out of reach. Even if there is an economic downturn, it will still be unaffordable. Why some of these sharks buy up abandoned properties and let them deteriorate is beyond me, you’d think they would be interested in making revenue. If there was an effective ordinance passed to discourage this economic vandalism it would be welcome, if there is any political will, that is.