"Yards that are four or five foot tall, poison ivy growing in the front yard or on the houses," says police chief Duke Brackney, describing the conditions.
"Wild animals living, coming in and out of them."
Now, orange signs have replaced welcome mats.
Despite how it all sounds, none of it is intentional Halloween decor.
Brackney, the city's only full-time officer, says city officials are responding to complaints of unsightly-- abandoned homes, which aren't hard to find.
"It's kind of a joint effort to get the property owners and the city together," Brackney says.
"We go around we make a list we take pictures of them, it's part of the notification process."
And, as if the streetside scars weren't enough to fix -- a bigger band-aid might be needed for another part of the city that's also quickly becoming abandoned.
Half of the city council is vacant after recent resignations, including the city's mayor, who resigned for the fifth time earlier this month.
"We do have a current interim mayor," Brackney says.
Her name is Alice Peck.
She's also serving as recorder and treasurer, who is now tasked with keeping the ghost town stigma away from Sulphur Springs.
"Sulphur doesn't have a lot of business in it as far as jobs for the people that live here," Brackney says.
"It's a rough spot in the road but we're managing."