The properties each have two to three bedrooms, a backyard and are in a variety of conditions ranging from ‘liveable’ to ‘desperately needing refurbishment’.
Council members reportedly feel the abandoned buildings are dragging down living standards and raising crime rates by attracting arsonists, squatters and burglars, as well as devaluing nearby properties.
Abandoned houses are apparently a major problem in the area, with some 4,000 buildings left empty as of January, 2011.
Local resident, John Bannister, tells the Daily Mail that the situation in Stokes is dire.
“At the moment, there is vandalism, people using the backyards of empty houses for fly-dipping and all kinds of problems.”
Back in 2001, Wambo Shire Council offered 48 blocks of land in Jandowae, 260km west of Brisbane, for $1 each.
The town of about 1,000 was in the dulldrums as people were leaving the area, their houses were unoccupied and shops were closing.
After the sale, the population rose and business picked up. By 2005, the council declared the stunt a 'huge success'.