Saturday, June 30, 2012

BofA Fails To Give Vacant Home In Foreclosure Proper Attention Until It Finds Itself On City Wrecking Ball Appointment List

In Portland, Oregon, The Oregonian reports:

  • Mitch McKee clicked off his flashlight and walked out of a Northeast Portland house with broken windows, a fire-damaged roof, no working utilities and garbage piled waist-high in a detached garage. "They cleaned up a bit," he told police officers waiting outside.

  • The quick check last week that the house was empty was, in fact, pretty low-key for the Portland senior housing inspector who has become the point man for the city's recession-fueled stock of dilapidated homes.
  • According to Multnomah County records, the home was first scheduled for foreclosure sale in December 2010, but the bank called off the sale. It's now scheduled for auction next month. In the meantime, no one at Bank of America gave permission to vacate the house of people staying illegally and allow the city to board up entrances.

    Threatening demolition

  • Portland officials held an administrative hearing for a warrant to board up the house and, when break-ins continued, scheduled a hearing for permission to tear down the house. That got someone's attention. A Bank of America representative attended the hearing and agreed to provide basic maintenance and routine checks that the property was staying vacant.

  • "We weren't able to get anywhere until we held that hearing and proposed demolition, and we were prepared to go through with it," [Portland's Bureau of Development Services enforcement manager Mike] Liefeld said. "That's the goal. We're leveraging our ultimate authority to try and get a responsible party to comply with adopted codes."

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