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Anyone else take it upon themselves to keep up on the lawns in their neighborhoods of the homes ravaged by foreclosure? I live in a nice development but at least 1 house on every block is vacant. So I do my part for the neighborhood and tend those lawns too! Sme of my neighbors saw me and are helping out by finish mowing or trimming. Helps our neighborhood out. I'm sure there are other MTF members out there that do it too. Thanks
 

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You are saving the banks that own them a ton of money. They are responsible for the upkeep but are generally to cheap to do it.
 

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You are saving the banks that own them a ton of money. They are responsible for the upkeep but are generally to cheap to do it.
The banks are responsible for the upkeep, but they will only do bare minimum. If we all help out a little by cutting a lawn or two here & there, it is ONLY gonna help our property values. If the grass runs rampant, we end up with rodents, reptiles, lions, tigers & bears... oh my! Let's keep the neighborhood looking nice and free from non-human critters. It makes your house cost more!

:congrats:
 

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A guy I work with does it part-time via his lawn service. The company he works for has a list of vacant homes from banks that he mows. He has to take before and after pics of each property, makes a decent supplemental income. I am not about to take his job away from him. :)
 

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I work for a Bank in CT and part of my job is to visit the foreclosed properties at least once a week and do a walk around and make sure everything is in order. If there is any problem at all we have it taken care of immediately, so I guess it depends on what Bank owns the property. We are a community bank with a great deal of pride in our community.
 

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I hate mowing my own grass I'm sure not going to mow some for a bank for free and since I'm not moving I hope my property's value hits rock bottom so the taxes will be cheap.(LOL)
 

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I hate mowing my own grass I'm sure not going to mow some for a bank for free and since I'm not moving I hope my property's value hits rock bottom so the taxes will be cheap.(LOL)
I'm in agreement about NOT doing anything to help out the "Bank" for free ......
 

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The banks are responsible for the upkeep, but they will only do bare minimum. If we all help out a little by cutting a lawn or two here & there, it is ONLY gonna help our property values. If the grass runs rampant, we end up with rodents, reptiles, lions, tigers & bears... oh my! Let's keep the neighborhood looking nice and free from non-human critters. It makes your house cost more!

:congrats:
If you call and lodge a complaint, they will come cut the grass. They want to sell the property. I just would not mess with a REO property, you start assuming liability when you "clean" or "cut the grass". Who needs that? I agree they can be eyesores but force the bank to do its job.

I know when I moved from my property a couple of years ago when I was transferred, I paid my neighbor(who did lawn care on the side) to cut the grass/trim until it sold.

Cutting grass or blowing snow for an ederly neighbor is a worthwhile exercise in being neighborly. Helping out a corporation worth many times your personal wealth (unless you are Bill Gates) is a waste of gas if you ask me.

I wish there were more community banks like one of the posters says he works for. Unfortunately a lot of those were taken out during the financial crisis.

Anyways, to each his own. I can't stand an overgrown yard either but I would rather call the bank or the realtor and complain to them. If I lived in a HOA, I would certainly be complaining to them so I could get something for my association fees.
 

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There's a foreclosed house a few doors down from me, the grass gets a foot high before the bank pays a guy to cut it. About once a month a guy shows up in a small car with a push mower to cut it. He's being paid by the bank to cut the lawn. If I cut it, I'm sure that guy would be out of a job. He's got to be desperate for cash to cut almost an acre and a half with an old 3hp push mower. When he's done it looks like a hay field ready to be bailed. Its on a main highway so its also littered with bottles and debris all the time, so the whole time he's mowing you hear glass shattering and McD's cups getting shredded.

The house is full of rats, foreclosed on by eviction with all belongings and food left inside 8 years ago. They've had exterminators there but it remains infested. Call after call does nothing, one neighbor even paid a guy to spray and place rat poison but it didn't last. The owner was an animal hoarder and the place is piled to the ceiling inside with trash. You can watch rats fight in the windows all day long. We're all just hoping it don't burn down or something and send all the vermin looking for new homes.

I don't think I care to put any of my mowers through what it takes to cut that mess either. Even before it was empty the lawn there was never kept after, some old guy owned it and he wouldn't let anyone cut it or even get near the place. He lived there for 50+ years and no one ever got along with him. They fought with everyone, constantly called the police on others for every thing and filed complaint and lawsuits on almost every neighbor on the block over the years for all sorts of BS complaints. When they raided the place and removed him by force along with all the animals, on TV as well, most of the neighbors were relieved to see him go.

If it were a good neighbor, I'd have no problem cutting the lawn there and do so time to time for other neighbors. Of course there was another neighbor, who couldn't cut his own grass due to health issues, where we would take turn cutting his lawn. If I had the tractor out to do mine, I'd buzz his lawn at the same time. He then would complain about how I cut his grass, he would complain if you didn't go back and weed whack, or complain if you didn't cut it in a different direction each time. I gave up after he got mad when I told him my tractor won't fit through is gate and the back yard would have to wait till his other neighbor got there with a smaller rear engine mower. After that I quit mowing it. So did everyone else I guess since he now pays a lawn service who he screams at every week while they work. His water main broke one summer and he blamed it on my riding mower, he blamed another neighbor for cracking his sidewalk by driving over it with his RER Snapper, and blamed another for putting dents in his car in his locked garage. (He claimed that the mower had to have kicked up stones which hit his car inside the closed, locked garage door on the opposite side along the wall). I also see he's been through at least a dozen lawn services this year.
 

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I would,and do, mow an elderlys lawn. I dont think I would mow a forclosed because its owned by the bank. Ive heard plenty of horror stories from people falling behind on payments. I work for a small city and if we have a vacant house we call the bank and make them cut it or we do it and charge them. :)
 

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But what do you do if there's no sign on the door or in the yard? The house is just vacant.
 

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But what do you do if there's no sign on the door or in the yard? The house is just vacant.
Your county or city tax assessor will know who owns the property and that should be public information. I would start there if it is that much of an eye sore.

Some cities or counties will level fines on the owner until its cleaned up. This is not an easy problem to deal with and unfortunately is probably a very common problem across the nation due to the housing bubble fiasco.

Last year when I was buying a house here in Texas, I looked at a lot of REO properties because they were very cheap. However, most of them had a major flaw. I didn't mind a fixer upper, but most were beyond my skill and/or pocket book to bring back and make a profit on. It was a shame too, because some of these properties were 3-500k properties going in the low 200's. The rest of neighborhood was fine. If you think the grass is a little long on the outside, you should see the insides of some of these places...that's why they sit and sit. :(
 

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I am cuttin gmy nxt door neughbor's yard, they had to move as house is getting foreclosed on, but he still techinically owns it right now so he has to upkeep. I am using his LT for the summer and he pays for gas so it's all good.
There is an older home up the road, right on the main 4 lane highway coming in that is in foreclosure, grass has not been cut yet this year, looks like it's ready for the hay bailer.
In our neck of the woods, it depends on the area if banks will keep up the house. Richy neigborhoods get cut every week, others like the house I mentioned, maybe not at all.
 

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Over the past 5 years living in our current house I have mowed 12 different houses in our development that were lost due to forclosure. I enjoy the work and I think the neighbors appreciate the effort. Nobody wants to look at a jungle growing next door.
You're messing up the whole economy!!! How will the thieves know which houses to steal the copper out of now? :sidelaugh
 

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I mowed for my neighbor that lost her house to foreclosure and I did as well when the bank owned it because the bank didn't do it and it looked like trash.
 

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If your town has laws, or your homeowners association has bylaws, that require the grass grass to be kept below a certain height, then get them to send fine notices to the banks. Hitting them in the pocketbook is the only only thing that will convince a bank to spend money.
 

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I think that would not be a good idea in my area,to "tresspass" and mow someone elses yard,that dont belong to you...with my luck if I tried that my mower would chuck a rock thru a window,and the cops would arrest me for tresspassing and B&E!...

That was so true,the remark about the theives not knowing which homes to rob the copper from!..its happened to two homes on my street,and it is no ghetto either..

I have a hard enough time keeping our yard from looking like a forclosed property,I had to cut the lawn today because if I let it go much higher,my tractor would have to be used in first gear to cut it,and thet'd take 3 hours instead of one!--and shady looking creeps were slowing down and looking the place over,like they were thinking it WAS un-occupied,so I figured I'd better cut it......and I barely had enough cash for gas to barely finish it too...

I dont mond helping someone in need,if asked too--but I dont think I'd "volunteer" to go mow all the vacant homes lawns,no thanks...it'd be trouble I'm pretty sure..
 

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Down the road apiece, we have a very nice (or was a very nice) 3 story that was converted into a bed and breakfast. They kept it up nicely. Then they disappeared to Florida, as the story goes.
Then last winter, the heat went off and all the pipes froze/broke, water flowng out the 3rd story wall was the 'call' we got one night. All utilities were cut clear per the town (gas/electric/water). Padlocks were placed on all the doors. A couple neighbors did mow a portion of the lawn so they could see when coming out of the side street.
Fast forward to the 'super' storm we had up here this year. The storm knocked down most of the trees on the property, some onto the neighbors property. The neighbors cut and removed the trees that were on their property, up to the lot line, only. The Town removed trees from the roads that boarder the property, only. The lawn is about 12 inches high right now. Some windows are now windowless.
The neighbors have had it with the 'owners'. I believe the 'town' is waiting until the taxes aren't paid, then they can auction the place off. But until then, everybody is staying off the property (neighbors and Town), except in case of emergency. The doors remain padlocked.
It's 'nice' that someone is mowing lawns on foreclosed property for free, but my mower was purchased for mowing MY lawn. Who's going to pay for the broken mower when I run into a rock, or break a mandrel, or rip up a tire on the foreclosed property. That's coming out of MY pocket. I've got other things I need that money for, such as food, rent, and health insurance.
 
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