"ORLANDO, Fla., March 28 (Reuters) - A national survey found 301,874 "zombie" properties dotting the U.S. landscape in which homeowners in foreclosure have moved out, leaving vacant property susceptible to vandalism and degradation. Florida tops the list of zombie properties with 90,556 vacant homes in foreclosure, according to a foreclosure inventory released on Thursday by RealtyTrac, a real estate information company in Irvine, California. Illinois and California ranked a distant second and third with 31,668 and 28,821 zombie properties respectively on the list...According to the Reuters special report, municipalities are left to deal with the mess when people move out after receiving a notice of a planned foreclosure sale that the bank then cancels. Some spend public funds on securing, cleaning and stabilizing houses that generate no tax revenue. Others let the houses rot."
A lot of these homes are in associations, and in many cases the associations are zombies, too. But look who is left to clean up (or not) behind the wreckage created by the housing market: municipalities. And they remain unprepared to do much of anything.