Western New York has some amazing examples of great housing all throughout the area. From the inner city neighborhoods in Buffalo, Lackawanna, and Tonawanda, to the rural areas in the county like Alden, Arcade, and Wilson - you can find just about every type of property in any condition.

Often we hear about some of the properties that are in great condition, either because they've gone on the market to be sold or there's been some renovation that is making the news. However, we don't hear a whole lot about the properties that are weighing our neighborhoods down because they've been neglected, in bad condition, and in need of serious repair.

One local initiative is looking to change that and maybe even convince the property owners to step up and do something about it.

Western New York Has A Zombie Home Problem

There is a fair amount of abandoned and neglected houses all over the region that are considered zombies. Not the kind of zombie that Merriam Webster calls a will-less and speechless human held to have died and been supernaturally reanimated, like the kind we see in TV shows like The Walking Dead. The zombies we have in Western New York are abandoned properties that fall into a unique legal category.

According to the Erie County Clerk’s Zombies Initiative, a zombie home is a vacant property in which the homeowner moves out of due to mortgage default and threat of foreclosure.

The home becomes a “zombie” because the bank has not completed the foreclosure process. In some cases, the bank decides to abandon the foreclosure years after determining it no longer wants the property. This allows the banks to reap the tax, insurance, and accounting benefits from documenting a loss. In turn, the zombies haunt former homeowners who find themselves legally liable for properties they did not even realize they still owned. All the while, the zombies bring down property values and negatively impact entire communities.
-Erie County Clerk’s Zombies Initiative

By all accounts, there are hundreds of zombie houses in Western New York that are acting as a plague on neighborhoods. However, officials at the Initiative say there are a few properties that are so bad that they have had to create their own ten-worst list.

You can check out the worst of the worst below. If you want officials to look into an abandoned property in your neighborhood, you can contact the Erie County Clerk’s Zombies Initiative here.

These Are The 10 Worst Zombie Properties In Western New York

Abandoned and forgotten properties can really be a nuisance, but these are the worst of the worst in Buffalo and WNY, and they fall into a unique legal category. 

Gallery Credit: Ed Nice

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