Abandoned properties, particularly those located in urban areas or surrounding residences and businesses, have a negative impact on their community. They can be magnets for criminal activity, cause public health issues, decrease neighboring property values, increase risk of property damage, and generally diminish the quality of life for residents. But many of these properties have potential value for residential and other uses, and municipalities have tools at their disposal to address this issue and encourage urban revitalization. Many municipalities across New Jersey and the country maintain an Abandoned Property List and have enacted Vacant Property Registration Ordinances, which require property owners to pay an escalating fee for registration and mandate their maintenance to the standards set by the municipality. But the most recent tool made available to municipalities is a new state law that, if adopted in a municipal ordinance, would require foreclosing creditors to maintain properties or face stiff daily fines for violations.
Download as a sample Newark’s Abandoned Property Ordinance holding foreclosing creditors accountable for maintenance.
NJ Spotlight Article on the new law that would allow municipalities to hold foreclosing creditors accountable for maintenance.
Safeguard Properties maintains a Matrix of known VPROs from all over the country
See also this NJ Spotlight Article on Trenton’s innovative homesteading initiative