Code violations, 3 years of Vacancy, REO property?
Linda received a REO assignment from the Bank; she researched the property on the County records to searching the county records Linda discovered the sale took place 3 years ago. As a seasoned REO broker she expected the property to be vacant (as the bank has indicated) and property condition to be poor to fair. In a period of three years of weather related issues and the fact that no one has been maintaining or preserving the asset, she expected the worst.
She drove to the property which was located a 10 minute drive from her office; upon arriving at the single family residential property she could not see the house at street level. The weeds and landscaping was growing for the entire summer, it literally looked like a jungle in the middle of the city! The weeds and grasses were 6 to 9 feet tall, and the sidewalk to the front of the building was not passable, not even visible!
Linda made her way to the back of the house slowly through the maze of weeds and tall grasses and noticed the items that were left in the yard, two old barbeques, damaged swing set, huge pile of lumber/firewood, two 6 x 8 damaged sheds and various other old appliances.
Linda tried to open the rear door of the house and to no avail, the door was locked tight. Next, she tried to access the sliding glass door, that was locked as well and even had a stick that was lodged in the slider guide to secure the sliding glass door. Linda said to herself, no access from the back, she managed to go around to the front of the house and slowly burrowed her way through the weeds and somehow managed to arrive at the front door.
She looked at the front door and saw numerous postings attached to the door, many of the postings looked weather beaten and old. She started looking though the paper work and soon realized that the majority of the postings were the code violations from the County. Some of the violations were posted two years ago and one posting was as recent as last week.
Linda was astonished by the number and duration of the code violations. She gathered the postings and made her way back to her vehicle though the path of weeds she made during her journey to the front door.
She returned to her office to contact the AM to let her know the condition of the exterior of the property including the code violations.
Linda because of her professionalism immediately contacted the Counties Code Enforcement Department to inform them that the Bank has assigned the REO asset to her and she would be on top of the violations. She asked the Code Enforcement Officer for an extension of time to communicate with the bank and work out a plan of attack to manage the properties issues. The Officer granted a small period of time to resolve the code violations because Linda took the time to contact them about the property and work with the County.
The AM contacted Linda and instructed her to get two estimates of the work from Vendors to perform the services needed to bring the property back within the Counties Code Enforcement guidelines and regulations.
Linda contacted two of her lawn maintenance vendors to to go to the property to inspect the condition of the weeds, landscape, trash, and items that have been left behind. She was requested that both vendors provide her with their bids within a 24 hour period.
One Vendor had an estimate of $2,890 and the second vendor estimate came in slight lower at $2,765.
Linda submitted both estimates to the AM for her review, and patiently waited for the Banks decision to move forward with the cleanup of the property.
The Bank decided to move forward with the lower estimate and gave Linda the thumbs up to contact the Vendor to proceed with the maintenance and removal of the unwanted items on the property within 72 hours
Linda had the approval and the timeframe needed to contact the Code Enforcement Officer to inform him that the property will be in compliance with the counties regulations and guidelines within 72 hours.
The Officer and Department were satisfied with the future condition of the property and were grateful to Linda and the Bank for their efforts to correct the problems associated with this REO Property.
The prior two years of code violations were mutually worked out between the county and the bank because Linda was proactive with the issues regarding the property and the counties Code Enforcement Department.
The County would rather have property maintained and looking better than being difficult about the past code violations.
The improved maintenance of the property enhanced the neighborhood instead of being a negative visual effect of the area.
The moral of the story is being proactive as REO Broker will improve the reputation as a Real Estate Professional!
The Asset Manager, Bank and Code Enforcement Officer will work with Linda as she has demonstrated she is very good as what she does. If a similar property comes up in the future regarding any Code Enforcement issues within the boundaries of this particular county, do you thinks the officer will work with Linda on a professional level?
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