ANDERSON COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – Anderson County has completed Phase I of the demolition of “dilapidated” homes.

“This year, so far, we’ve torn down 11,” said Rusty Burns, Anderson County’s Administrator. “We have six more that we’re getting ready to do.”

Each year, the county receives money to demolish houses that are abandoned and deemed uninhabitable.

“It’s always one of the most popular things we do because it improves the neighborhood and removes places where people might be doing illegal activities,” explained Burns.

But, Burns said getting rid of the structures is not easy.

“We do an inspection to see whether it needs to be condemned,” he said. “We also try to work with the homeowner to get them to fix it up. But, if all of that fails, we begin the process.”

Burns explained the process takes six to 12 months before the county can begin demolition. He said, on average, it costs about $15,000 to demolish a single house.

Residents told 7NEWS the dilapidated homes are a “nuisance.” They explained that they have drawn more homeless and crime into their neighborhoods.

“We’ve torn down numerous drug and crack houses,” said Burns.

As the county prepares to demolish the next phase of homes, Burns said they are looking to the future. At Tuesday’s meeting, the county council voted to build affordable housing where some dilapidated homes once stood.

“We’re trying to return them back to the tax rolls and provide affordable housing for people in Anderson County,” said Burns.

Anyone interested in making a complaint about a dilapidated home in their neighborhood can visit the county’s website.