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Neighbors voice concerns about vacant homes in Greensboro neighborhood

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Residents of the Glenwood neighborhood are concerned that vacant homes in the area are drawing in some uninvited guests.

For years Ben Holder has tried to clean up the image in his neighborhood.

Holder lives in the Glenwood area not too far from UNC-Greensboro and says the area has a number of abandoned homes being used for drugs and prostitution.

"No one should have to live in a breeding ground like this," said Holder.

Holder showed off two homes on West Florida Street that have sat vacant for months. He believes the city is not performing proper inspections -- putting the safety of dozens of people at risk.

"I bet you not one member of city council would want this next to them year after year," said Holder.

City officials say they try to make every attempt to work with property owners before demolishing their homes. Property owners are given 30 day increments and up to 270 days to fix the problems. If progress isn't made, the minimum housing committee meets and decides how to deal with the problem.

Sue Schwartz with the City Planning and Community Development Department says they're doing more with less and trying to be more efficient.

"It's sort of a balancing act. We have to keep the public safe, but we want to honor the rights of the property owners," Schwartz said.

The city did not say whether the homes on Florida Street would be demolished.

If you have a complaint about an abandoned home you can call 336-373-2489.