Neighbors in Largo neighborhood fear abandoned house is creating a safety hazard

House has sat vacant for 15 years

People in one Largo neighborhood are fed up with what they say is a safety hazard next to their homes. 

 

"...15 years we've been dealing with this," Don Norvath said. He lives across the street from what he calls an eyesore. A house with two abandoned cars out front, overgrown weeds, trash, and broken windows.  

 

"We noticed that the lawn was atrocious. The cars have just been sitting there. Snakes, rats coming from the house," Don said.

 

Don says the house has sat vacant for over 15 years after the man who supposedly owns the place stopped coming home. "He seemed like a decent enough guy, but the house has always kind of looked like this," Don said

 

Don, along with other neighbors are worried the home is making their neighborhood unsafe. They say police have been called to the house on numerous occasions for complaints about people breaking in and doing drugs.

 

"Worried about people breaking into our houses and everything else if they're going there to do drugs," Don said,

 

Neighbors also say a few years ago, someone trespassing on the property threw out a lit cigarette butt that caught a camper shell out front on fire. That fire spread to the home, but was quickly put out. That's another reason they point to why the house is a hazard.

 

Todd Myers with the Pinellas County Code enforcement claims they haven't been able to get in touch with the owner.

 

"We are monitoring it and taking whatever action we can at any step of the way," Todd said.

 

He also says the state of Florida has strict laws when it comes to the rights of homeowners. So right now, all code enforcement can do is continue to fine the owner and write citations. 

 

 "The house would have to get to a point where it's damaged well beyond 50 percent of the value of the property for it be deemed for something we can move to the demolition process or something of that nature," Todd said.

 

That's a process neighbors hope becomes a reality, sooner than later.

 

"I would like to see the house just torn down," Don said.

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