After the housing market crash nearly 10 years ago, communities began to face an issue of vacant properties attracting crime and epidemic of blight. Properties left abandoned began to deteriorate and send communities into a downward spiral decreased property values and increased crime rates. Using Philadelphia as an example, the city list almost $4 billion in household wealth due to abandoned and foreclosed properties. So how do you fix this? Luckily, the solution to this problem has already been thought of and put into play - it's property registration!
What's property registration?
In the wake of these problems, communities began creating VRPOs, or Vacant Property Registration Ordinances. This local law required that banks, homeowners, landlords, mortgage companies, and other lenders, register the properties with the municipalities to which they belong. This registration allows communities to determine who is legally responsible for the vacant properties or foreclosures, the point of contact for each property, and to establish a framework for deadlines, penalties, and fees for those who do not comply.
How can it rebuild a community?
Through the process of proactive property registration, communities can fight the blight. Without a mission to stop blight in its tracks, the real damage created by vacant properties can be immense. If your community is already a victim, you'll notice the effects like loss of property tax revenue, additional code enforcement costs, and increased crime rates.
There is a light at the end of the tunnel. Property registration allows you to place ownership of these problems on the banks, landlords, or mortgage companies that are responsible for vacant properties in the community. Holding these lenders responsible brings about a new era of property preservation. Communities no longer have to worry about overgrown lawns and homes held together by a thread without knowing who is subject to fix the issues.
You can learn more about community revitalization through property registration by reading our blog, here.
How does a community get started with property registration?
If a community is facing, or is on the verge of facing, the problems that come with vacant, defaulted, or foreclosed homes, the first step is to establish vacant property registration ordinances. This law put in place by local government is the beginning of a community combating blight.
After creating VPROs, communities need a little help with tracking and managing contact information and responsible parties. That's where PROCHAMPS comes in! The PROCHAMP's services offer a proactive approach to property registration. We share with our partnering communities the registration and renewal fees and property ownership contact information by employing a multi-functional web-based application system. This user-friendly platform creates a registry for communities to easily track and maintain current records of foreclosures in their community.
Through VPROs and a PROCHAMPS partnership, your municipality can begin to rebuild and begin a full recovery in the fight against neighborhood blight. If you believe that your community could benefit from a partnership with PROCHAMPS, please visit our website or call us today at (321)421-6639.