Our neighborhood division has 25 homes and each has approx 1 ½ acres of land. We own our sewer system and own the horseshoe road. We each have a water well.
We live two blocks north of the Addick Dam Reservoir and several block from Bear Creek Park and two blocks north of the County courthouse on Clay Road. We are in the Katy School District but east Katy City limits.
Not only will we talk about snakes, landmines and grass fires, well will also talk about raccoons and rats.
Vacant homes are a problem in southeast Texas since the hurricane last year.
We have lived here for 3 years and am not sure how long the vacant home has been empty. It has been vacant approx 10 years since it partially burned and it did flood last year during Hurricane Harvey.
The county health and environment services has had 2 courtroom trials, one of which is since I have lived here.
We hoped the judge would tell owner to tear down the house, however he instructed the owner to take away the trash in the back yard and keep the grass cut. I think our legal remedies are finished.

If you have a nuisance building in your area, first determine if you are in an unincorporated area of the county or if the property is in a city.
In Houston, contact the Director of Department of Neighborhoods at 832 394 0600. They fight blight.
If the property is in Harris County, but not a city or town, You can ask the county to enforce the Neighborhood Nuisance Abatement Act.
Phone Harris county Environmental Public Health at 713 – 274 – 6300

Before calling Harris County Public Health to file a complaint:
• obtain a correct address of the complaint site (name of street, street number, nearby cross street).
• obtain the legal description of the property in question, if possible (name of subdivision, lot number, block number).
• obtain the name and address of the owner and/or name of the occupant of the property in question, if possible.
Hopefully we will find a way to get rid of the vacant ghost home. Several Owners nearby have seen many raccoons and rats.
It seems that the County laws do not require the owner to maintain it to be livable, however it must be locked to prevent entry. The trash must be taken away and the grass cut.

The 11 homes on the south side of the horseshoe did flood.
When we built our home, we noticed another owner on the south side corner was pouring a slab and did not think to ask why. She built a duplex and has tenants
The realtor across the street did not complain nor the next door neighbor.
The owner on the corner also turned the garage and garage quarters above the garage into a duplex.
In her main house, she rented two rooms upstairs. It has an indoor pool attached to the back of the home.
So the owner has 6 tenants and they sometimes walk down and around the horseshoe road. In our neighborhood, We look our for each other and watch for people we do not recognize.
Previously we knew all our neighbors on this street which a horseshoe and not a through street. We do not have an owners association therefore deed restrictions must be legally enforced by one or more owners in the subdivision.

We own the road and could put up a gate if we have 100% written authorization from all the owners in the neighborhood.
The deed restrictions say that each owner may have a single family home … not a multifamily rental property. Legally, another neighbor can file a lawsuit to force the multifamily owner to stop renting to tenants. She might claim that they are not rental units and she is not collecting rents. We may have to take depositions from the multifamily owner and her tenants to prove that she does lease the converted apartments
After the flood, all our owners met at my house to discuss flood challenges and we agree to put up temporary wood barriers at each end of the road, to keep out looters.

I offered to help the multifamily owner sell her flooded property and NOT charge a sales commission.
ZERO sales commission to me. I will absorb my cost to help her sell. Her next door neighbor and the Realtor across the street did not like my attitude because they like the multifamily owner because she is nice. Other neighbors want the tenants to be gone. One neighbor offered to pay a larger portion of the legal fees.
Since the hurricane flood, She has rehabbed the home and apt rental units. Now she has put on new roofing tiles and installed solar cells on the roof to reduce her electric bill. She has a water well.
Will keep you informed.