NIAGARA FALLS, NY (WKBW) -- Building inspectors say it's one of the worst hoarding cases they've seen and have condemned a home on Wyoming Avenue near Lewiston Road in Niagara Falls, saying it's unsafe and unsanitary to live in.
The owner of the home apparently lived in deplorable conditions for years and the property has become an attraction for all kinds of unwanted rodents. "It was horrendous... stuff from the floor to the ceiling... reports of rats, raccoons, and mice and all kinds of rodents in the backyard because the grass was up to about 3 to 4 foot high," Niagara Falls Code Enforcement Director Dennis Virtuoso said.
After two days of cleaning by the city, the overgrown trees and grass are now mostly gone from the property but inside the home still so much "stuff" there's no room to walk. Officials can barely open the doors. "It is condemned for occupancy...it is a hazard to the people living there," Virtuoso said. "There were three exotic birds in there and we called the SPCA and they came and took them."
Neighbors have been complaining about the condition of the yard and when the city showed up to start the clean up on Monday they found deplorable living conditions. "When they went there to cut the grass and trim all the trees... they found that the door was open and they saw all the debris in the house... so they knew they had to call us, code enforcement right away, so we could take care of it," Virtuoso said.
As for the neighbors they say they're happy to see the property start to become the clean place it once was more than a decade ago before the latest owners moved in.
Officials say the property owners aren't being charged at this time but are working with family members to clean up the home. The city will be sending the property owners a bill for the clean up.