Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Are speculators a blight in your neighborhood?

There is a house just down the street from ours that has remained vacant for over 2 years. I say over 2 years loosely, because it has been vacant since we moved into our house. It is a nice looking house - if it were taken care of. The yard is dead and only the weeds grow (it is mowed by a mowing service every other month or so). 2 large trees in front of the house are overgrown and lay partly on the roof, leaving the whole thing a dark blotch on the street. It's the kind of house that you always would think was haunted when you were a little kid. But instead of being an old rundown house, it's one less than 10 years old.

It once had a for sale sign, but was apparently purchased sometime last year. The sale sign is gone, but it remains empty. Undoubtedly the back has been broken into, because if you walk by and look in the windows you can see that kids have spray-painted on the walls (fortunately not gang related, more like funny cartoon pictures). It is supposedly worth $200k, but of course it only sold for $125k (less than my house that is half its size).

It is simply a blight on our neighborhood. A house bought by some investor and left to rot. Why they would do this baffles me, but I expect to see a for sale sign up again soon with no improvement to the property at all. It is just likely that the speculator will foreclose.

The sad thing is that they have no investment in the neighborhood, so they could care less how it makes the street look.

So, are broke speculators leaving eyesores in your community?

1 comment:

Jim said...

I know how this feels like. In my neighborhood we have houses that people can't sell so they rent them out to people. These renters have little to no accountability. I've seen kids spray paint their names on the sidewalks, people let the dogs lay mines and walk away, a lot of extra cars parked on the sides of the street, loud music, etc. As these units are probably destroyed by the renters, meanwhile the owners are trying to sell them, it makes the value of the whole neighborhood go down. Plus we have had foreclosures which makes the area even worse.

My association recently tried to go door to door and get a petition to stop people from renting their units. This thing failed badly because the owners don't live in the actual unit, the renters do! Most of these RE investors own a bunch of units anyways and subcontract property management. It’s too bad I didn't find out stuff like this before moving. Live and learn I guess.