A politician who lives in a south Lincolnshire village is being forced to sell up a ramshackle house he inherited in Lincoln – as he cannot afford to repair it himself.
The City of Lincoln Council is poised to compulsorily purchase the property which will be done up and rented out.
One resident has dubbed 13 Sidney Street, off the city's lower High Street, "the house that died of shame".
The current owner is Phil Dilks, Deeping St James's Lincolnshire County Councillor. He lives more than 40 miles away in Church Street, Deeping St James.
A Sidney Street neighbour says it had stood empty for at least 12 years.
Another resident claimed that at one point someone was squatting in the empty three-bedroom house, while on another occasion, slates fell from the roof and damaged a parked car, and damp entered the property next door.
It has now come to the attention of the local authority and a scheme to bring empty homes back into use.
Cllr Dilks, a Labour Party press officer, said: "The property in Sidney Street was left to me by my late father and it was signed over to me in the past year.
"I would like to see it put back into use. I have no idea how much it will go for. It's in a bit of a state but I don't have the money to put it back into use."
Coun Dilks, previously a contender for Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner, was forced to withdraw from the race in 2012 after it emerged he had broken the law during a "schoolboy prank" involving a stolen crash helmet in 1968, when he was 16.
According to property website Zoopla, houses in Sidney Street, off Bargate, sell for an average of £77,750.
It is unlikely 13 Sidney Street will make anything near that.
Bargate resident Monica Washington, 45, said: "This house makes the whole street look untidy.
"It's a shame it's rotting away because it would make a nice home for a family.
"It would be nice if the council buys 13 Sidney Street for someone to live in.
"The simple fact is; look at all the homeless.
"It would be good to hear kids playing in the street."
The city council is also looking to buy 13 Albany Terrace, off Newark Road.
One resident said she could not recall anyone living there in the 27 years she has lived in the street. The Land Registry lists the owner as Colin James Peters, of 13 Albany Terrace, who the Echo was unable to contact.
Zoopla puts the average value of two-bedroom houses in Albany Terrace at £73,500.
Sarah McLaren, 33, of Maple Street, Bracebridge, said the nearby Albany Terrace property should become a family home.
She said: "I've lived here for 15 years and I've never seen anyone living there.
"It's a shame it's been empty for so long.
"I think it would be a good idea for the council to buy it and rent it out.
"It would make an ideal family home, especially with the park and the schools nearby."
The City of Lincoln Council is involved in the Empty Homes Project which aims to work with owners to bring properties that have stood empty for six months or more back into use.