Sound Off

Sound off: If a bank owns a single-family house, who is responsible for its upkeep when it starts to become neglected?

According the Code Enforcement Manager Brian Jimenez, it can be difficult to determine who the owner of a property is during foreclosure. Once the process is complete and the bank becomes the owner, the bank has the responsibility of maintaining the property.


deec 2 years, 2 months ago

Maybe if Wall Street wasn't fraudulently foreclosing on so many houses, this wouldn't be such a problem nationwide. Where are the criminal prosecutions of these thieves?


Gotland 2 years, 2 months ago

Obama will give them tax payer money for this as a stimulus plan.


jayneway 2 years, 2 months ago

This is happening in my neighborhood right now. The house behind us has been vacant over 3 years with no action at all by the bank. One neighbor maintains the front yard. We call the city regularly in the summer to have the backyard mowed. The house used to be alive with a family; and now it's falling apart. It's amazing how fast that happens.

Maybe riverrat is trying to move into our neighborhood!


George_Braziller 2 years, 2 months ago

A few years ago there was a house next door to me that the owners suddenly abandoned. Just packed up one night and left. The bank eventually foreclosed on it but it sat empty for four years. I started mowing the yard because the grass was two feet tall and I couldn't stand it any more. During the entire four years the only time it was mowed was when I did it.


rockchalker52 2 years, 2 months ago

Sometime, the banks will keep the lawn mowed & defer all other issues until they see what kind of purchase offer somebody throws at 'em.
Other times, they'll spend a bit, if they have to, to make it marketable.


Laura Wilson 2 years, 2 months ago

Unfortunately foreclosure can take a couple years. We have a couple houses in our neighborhood that have been abandoned for 2 1/2 years and they're still in the middle of the foreclosure action. The city mows every couple of months and charges the owners, but they look horrible. Until the action is complete, the mortgage holder doesn't own the property. If the place is abandoned, the former residents/owners are the ones responsible for upkeep and taxes, not the mortgage holders. Without a court order I'm not sure the mortgage holder has the right to even go and mow the lawn.


progressive_thinker 2 years, 2 months ago

I hate to break the news, but it is unlikely that the bank will do much of anything, and the city will do little to enforce the code.

We had a foreclosure next door to us a few years ago. Two other neighbors and myself made a commitment to keep the yard looking good. I am convinced that the fact that the house looked well kept is the reason that it sold quickly once the foreclosure proceeding was completed.

From my perspective, the mortgage company acted quite irresponsibly. However, as area property owners, we felt that it was necessary to take action to protect our interest in property value.


Ron Holzwarth 2 years, 2 months ago

The bank is also required to pay the property taxes.

And, the bank needs to hope that the house does not turn into a "Discount Home Depot". It is amazing how fast houses are stripped in southern California. I know a family that lost their home to foreclosure, and things were being stolen from it before they were even completely moved out.

They knew better than that, they had already been told that the only way to move in southern California is to have a moving van come and get everything in one day. But they thought it would not apply to them because the house was on a dead end street, and they didn't think anyone would see them moving. But, the word got out and spread really fast.

And within three weeks, everything of value had been removed from the house. By that, I mean the plantings in the yard, the ceiling fans, the furnace, the toilets, the doors, and I'm not sure what all else. I think the sinks were stolen also, but I'm not sure.

Needless to say, banks in southern California suffer tremendous losses because of that. The only way they can sell the houses after that is to heavily discount them.


somedude20 2 years, 2 months ago

Boy, I sure hope that some how some way that the tax payers are on the hook for it. Banks need their money more than us little people.....without money, it would not be a bank!


2 years, 2 months ago

The bank is responsible for it's upkeep. They own it.


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