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More Las Vegas houses boarded up despite improved economy

At an abandoned house a mile or so from the Meadows Mall, the boards covering the front door and windows have a red-colored message: “No Trespassing.”

But people aren’t staying away. A side gate is open, someone graffitied an anarchy symbol on the house, and a next-door neighbor sees vagrants come and go. Some nights, he says, there’s so much noise he can’t sleep.

The house was boarded in March, though it’s not the only property in Las Vegas getting covered with plywood.

The number of homes getting boarded up in the city has been rising even as the real estate market and broader economy improve. Blocking a home’s entry points doesn’t guarantee its security, but it’s a way for local officials to deal with nuisance properties, and such efforts have been increasing.

Las Vegas officials will board a house if the owner fails to secure the so-called open and accessible property. As of June 5, city contractors had boarded homes 97 times in the fiscal year that started last July, compared with 117 the whole previous fiscal year, 44 in 2011 and around 30 annually before the recession hit, according to city officials.

The figures are only for homes within Las Vegas city limits, not in unincorporated Clark County or other cities like Henderson and North Las Vegas.

It’s not uncommon for abandoned houses in the valley to get squatters or vandals, or to go up in flames. But even if they stay empty, the homes can fall into disrepair with trash and debris scattered about, dead or overgrown landscaping, broken windows, polluted pool water or other problems.

‘Almost everywhere’

Phyllis Weaver, who lives near the intersection of Bonanza Road and Eastern Avenue, knows all about vacant properties. The house next door is empty and a homeless person is camping in the backyard of another one on her street.

 

Read more of this article by Eli Segall at: http://bit.ly/2suw4Pr

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