In order to fight the long-standing problem of vacant and abandoned homes, New York became the latest state to enact legislation to fight the adverse effect these properties, often called “zombie” properties, have on their surrounding communities.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the bill into law this week. The bill was passed as part of the 2016 Legislative Session and is considered to be a boon for the economic health and public safety of those communities in which these properties are located. It will also help those homeowners who are at risk of losing their homes due to foreclosure.
“For many New Yorkers, homes are our single most important investment, but that investment can be undermined by the blight of neglected and abandoned properties,” Cuomo said. “For each zombie home that we cure and for each that we prevent with this legislation, we are saving entire neighborhoods from the corrosive effect of blight and neglect. I thank my colleagues in the Assembly and Senate for seeing a crisis and helping to turn it into an opportunity for people to realize the great American Dream of homeownership.”
The New York legislation follows legislation passed in Ohio in May to stop the spreading of blight due to vacant and abandoned properties. Ohio enacted a “fast track” foreclosure bill into law in late May that will expedite the completion of a foreclosure and reduce the amount of time that a property remains vacant. The Ohio bill is widely considered to be a template for national legislation to curb the effects of vacant and abandoned properties.
Establishment of a Consumer Bill of Rights to prevent the homeowner from abandoning the property early when he/she learns the foreclosure process has begun.