Having an abandoned house in the neighborhood is not only an eyesore but a potential problem that attracts squatters and trouble. If you’re concerned about the abandoned house next door and how it can harm your property value, then read on to learn what you can do about it.
Is it Really An Abandoned House?
While you can take action to help protect your neighborhood in the case of an abandoned house, it’s important to first ensure that the house is truly abandoned. Leave a note on the door or see if you can catch someone coming or going to the property. What appears to be abandoned could actually be a home where the occupant is unable to care for the property and land by themselves and you could offer to help.
If you are sure there is no one living on the property then start by mailing a letter to the address, even though the owners are no longer living there they might have left a forwarding address at the post office and the mail may get forwarded to the right people. If your attempt at contacting them by mail doesn’t work you can go the extra mile by checking out the public records.
The local county clerk’s office can give you the name of the homeowner and their address as this information is all open to the public. In the best case scenario the address of the homeowners will be different from the abandoned house so you can send a letter to them with your concerns and offers of solutions to their abandoned property.
If there is no owner listed for the home then the country clerk’s office can get you the information from the bank on file that owns the mortgage to the home. If this is the case reach out to the bank to discuss ways to improve the property to keep your neighborhood safe from squatters and crime. The home might be in the middle of the foreclosure process which could explain the abandoned look to the home. Let the bank know your concerns or any issues you’ve seen as the bank can take steps to minimize any damages or vandalism and close on the home more quickly.
What To Do About the Abandoned House in the Neighborhood
If you’ve been able to get in touch with the homeowners then you can work with them to help them find a buyer. In some situations the homeowners will have moved out of state, leaving the property to go wild and unattended and leading to less offers and interest on the home. You can offer to help by mowing the yard (with permission) or spreading the word about the home for sale. If they haven’t had any luck in selling the property, you can let them know that there are reputable house buying companies like Gary Buys Houses that will buy their home for cash and can close in as little as a week.
If the homeowners no longer live near the property, selling their home to a real estate investor is a great solution. A house buying company will come in and clean up and fix up the home, improving the look of the neighborhood before they put the house back on the market.
While the home lays empty talk to neighbors about looking out for each other and the safety of the community by keeping an eye on the home. You can, and should, report any problems or signs of squatting to the local police. Broken windows, doors, a jungle-like overgrown yard or trash strewn about are all potential violations of city building codes and you can contact local officials so they can take action.
What Not To Do About the Abandoned House in the Neighborhood
While it is tempting to take matters into your own hands and do something about the abandoned house yourself, it’s important that you stay off the property unless you have permission from the homeowners or the bank. Your helpful action of mowing the lawn or even installing floodlights to keep away vandals could actually get you in trouble and get you blamed for any accidental damage that occurs while you’re just trying to help.
If you talk to the bank or homeowners first, the odds are good that they will give permission and be thankful for the help; but without that permission it’s best to stay away and avoid being liable for any accidents or damage to the property.
Contacting a Real Estate Investor about the Abandoned Home
If you have found out who owns the home and you know how long it has been abandoned then you can reach out to a real estate investor about purchasing and fixing up the home. You can pass along the homeowners information to a trusted investor like Gary can personally reach out to the owners with a cash offer. Contact Gary and he can help you and your neighbor be rid of the abandoned home and the problems that come with it.
Gary Buys Houses is dedicated to taking properties in poor condition and improving them before putting them on the market, helping the neighborhoods property values and safety. Contact Gary today to see how he can help with the abandoned house in your neighborhood.