Friday, June 17, 2011
What a dump!
From the Times Ledger:
Neighbors of the abandoned, dilapidated, two-story brick house at 80-44 Cypress Ave. said a band of squatters in their 30s and their dogs use the residence as a nightly hangout and even a bathroom.
“This place looks like a disaster,” said Sokol Gjonbalaj, whose second-story balcony hovers above the overgrown backyard. “If I left my house like that, I would get violations every day.”
Gjonbalaj actually did receive a $100 violation when a city inspector mistook his house for the abandoned home. And he has incurred other expenses as his homeowner insurance premiums went up and his property values down. He even had to replace a fence that separates his property from the lot of the house after the squatters knocked it down.
“Nobody cares,” Gjonbalaj said. “I’ve called the police, 311, [city] Sanitation.”
The Sanitation Department has come by a few times to clean part of the abandoned lot near the house, but the city Department of Buildings said the owner of the property is ultimately responsible for its upkeep.