In many neighborhoods across America, a sad sight occurs all too often. Empty and forlorn foreclosures are like the Debby Downer of the block. Plenty of horror stories are circulating around Atlanta about seemingly abandoned homes that are a psychological (and sometimes financial) drain on the surrounding community.
But there are a few ways you can make lemonade out of real estate lemons, dear neighbor. Here's 6 things you can do to improve your neighborhood's foreclosure woes.
- Act early, and don't be afraid of appearing nosy.
- If you start to notice a nearby foreclosure turning into an eyesore, don't let the situation get worse with time. This is your neighborhood we're talking about, and if you get a little Gladys Kravitz-esque, so be it.
- Form a neighborhood watch.
- What's better than Gladys Kravitz? A whole block of 'em keeping a tab on empty houses.
- Be sure to get the go-ahead before attempting your own cleanup efforts, like trash picking or lawn mowing.
- If you're clueless about who owns the foreclosure, contact a real estate agent. They should be able to tell you which bank owns the home.
- Watch out for code violations, and report them promptly to the appropriate department.
- Excessive peeling paint, plant overgrowth, and trash are issues that the city's bureau of code compliance will deal with.
- Notify the authorities about any suspicious activity on the property.
- Having the foreclosure secured is the best way to combat unauthorized visitors.
- Be proactive in selling the home
- Spread the word about the great deal down the street to family/friends you know who are looking to move. Well, maybe your mother-in-law doesn't need to know...