The City of Auburn isn’t sure who is legally responsible for maintaining several abandoned houses that have become neighborhood eyesores, but they hope the city’s Wall of Shame website showcasing pictures of those homes spurs a collective effort to find them.
The website displays photos of 19 dilapidated properties along with their addresses, mortgage holders, and contact information for the companies potentially responsible for maintaining properties. Auburn residents are encouraged to take pictures of other properties that belong on the Wall of Shame, and to contact those potentially responsible for maintaining them.
“In many instances, the mortgage holders are out-of-state financial institutions who are slow to respond or have hired property preservation companies who are not consistent in their maintenance activities,” the city website says.
Auburn Mayor Peter Lewis told KING 5 he got the idea for the website after attending a recent national mayors’ conference, where it was obvious that other cities have also struggled to address the problem of abandoned homes since the 2008 foreclosure crisis. In many cases, it’s fallen to already cash-strapped cities to keep the properties up.