National

Feb 21, 2010 12:05 PM by Associated Press

Decaying apartments symptom of housing crisis

As landlords find themselves owing more than their properties are worth, some have simply walked away, leaving garbage to pile up. Others have disappeared into bankruptcy, with unpaid utility bills. Some have tried to reduce their losses by neglecting basic maintenance.

Harold Shultz of the Citizens Housing and Planning Council in New York City says the city alone has at least 100,000 apartments in disrepair and decay.

Across the country, multifamily mortgages covering 340,000 apartment units and worth almost $29 billion were delinquent or in foreclosure at the end of 2009. Real Capital Analytics says that's more than 18 times the sum from two years earlier.

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