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Getting Lenders’ Attention

August 5th, 2009 Leave a comment Go to comments

John Caywood from Ft. Wayne, writes:

I am one of the authors of the City of Fort Wayne’s minimum housing ordinance. When there is a violation on a property, we send an “Order to Repair” to both the owner and the mortgage holder. They are required to attend a hearing to answer to the violations. If nobody shows up to the hearing, a civil penalty may be assessed against the property. We have the potential to assess up to $2500 per hearing. This must be paid when property taxes are paid or the property could go to a tax sale. This is getting the attention of lenders in our community. If lenders face the potential of losing houses in tax sales due to penalties racking up, the motivation is there to repair.

This approach works because the city is able to collect the fines because they’re part of the property taxes.  I only wish that Illinois had this kind of legislation.  Unfortunately, all we can do is lien the property and hope to collect it someday or try to collect it like any other judgment.   Readers, do your states allow you to collect debts as part of the tax bill?

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