Monday, May 26, 2008

The Bush Boom

Exciting employment opportunities.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The house on East 24th Street was the worst of the six that David Law and Trey McCallister worked on the other day here. The front door had been kicked in so many times that the dead bolt was exposed and bent. Trash littered the front and back yards. A copper pipe was gone.

“Somebody has been trying to destroy this place,” said Mr. McCallister, eyeing the door.

But the two men have seen far more destruction as they go from one deserted house to another here in northern Florida, where the foreclosure crisis has struck particularly hard. Mortgage companies hire contractors like them to inspect and maintain houses that once-proud owners can no longer afford and no one else wants. These days, business is brisk.