Neighbors complain about empty house in Richmond

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – A neighbor's been calling the city about an abandoned house in Stratford Hills for five years now. She's fed up so we went to the city to see what could be done.

On Cottingham Road, they call it the haunted house. The porch collapsed last year. Debris sits in the yard. There's splintered wood and broken glass.

"Who wants to look at that? You work so hard in your yard and then you come out here and that's your view," said neighbor Nancy Sale.

Nancy Sale's been calling the property owner and city inspectors for years. There are flat bed trucks in the yard storing architectural columns and construction materials.

The house butts up to the backyards of two properties. Both neighbors have planted trees trying to block the view. Sale worries she'll never be able to sell her house with this in the backyard.

"We keep calling the city and they say they're on top of it," Sale said. "I am just getting nowhere fast. I just thought maybe if I called y'all we might get some kind of action."

We pulled the records for the house and discovered the city has cited the owner for at least 15 property violations over the last four years; violations ranging from high grass, debris in the yard to unsafe conditions for the broken porch and for not being boarded up.

After our calls to the city inspectors called the property owner, who came by last month and cleaned up the fallen porch. The city also did an inspection and decided the property owner had complied. The city says it will continue to keep a close eye on the home.

The property owner has told the city he will begin renovating this house. Later this year, we'll follow up to see if the work begins.

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