Left: Uncut grass and weeds at 3614 Jackman
(Toledo, OH) While the two vacant houses that sandwich him in are “not the worst in town,” Jim Seelye is concerned that they will begin a process of decline on Jackman Road.
“This is how it starts,” he said, motioning to the properties at 3614 and 3602 Jackman, which are located between Sylvania and Hillcrest. “Once they sit for a year or more without occupants they become magnets for all sorts of problems.”
Seelye noted that 3614 Jackman has some new occupants.
“Animals and wasps are setting up shop over there,” he said, noting that he is allergic to bee venom. “How much longer before we get the drug dealers?”
Left: A sparrow keeps vigil over 3614 Jackman
The grass at both homes had not been cut this year, and Seelye decided to cut the front grass at 3614 Jackman himself. Both properties have litter and broken windows, and shingles blow off the roof onto Seelye’s yard “whenever a good wind blows.”
Rudy Loffelman is concerned that the properties represent a hazard to nearby residents.
“Not only do these empty places attract vermin, but they also attract children,” he said. “I don’t think it’s too much to ask that people keep up their property.”
Both properties are currently held by banks: 3614 Jackman is owned by Flagstar Bank, and 3602 Jackman by Chase Home Finance. Neither corporation responded to telephone queries by press time.
On the day the ABLE Squad visited, three young children were playing on the porch of the vacant house at 3602 Jackman.
Left: Children playing on porch at 3602 Jackman
“A guy named Greg used to live here,” said one blond-haired young man. “He’s been gone a looooong time.”
The children promised that they would be careful, saying that “we never play in the garage or inside the house.” They were, however, able to describe with accuracy the contents of the house, suggesting that they have been at least curious enough to have looked in the windows.
This article is part of a regular feature I write for the Toledo Free Press called the ABLE Squad - "Abandoned Buildings Looking for Entrepreneurs."