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Speak Out
How should cities deal with abandoned properties?

April 18, 2013

by Jeremy Quattlebaum, Student Voices staff writer

Almost a decade ago this country was at the tail end of a housing boom that saw houses constructed on a record scale. In Las Vegas, for example, the city nearly doubled in population, and houses were being built faster than they could be filled.

Then the economy took a nosedive. Construction of houses stalled. Homeowners were faced with rising mortgages that they couldn’t afford, and cities experienced budget shortfalls because their main source of revenue, property taxes, were dwindling with the economy.

Now, cities and towns across the country have a glut of abandoned properties.

Abandoned properties are bad for towns and cities. Instead of bringing in revenue through property taxes, they become a financial burden to municipal governments, which must maintain the properties. These properties often become magnets for crime, with threats of arson and attracting transients. They also depress the value of the houses and properties around them, meaning even less money for cities.

So what is a city to do?

Many cities have been going after the negligent owners of the property. Fines and confiscation of the property with the aim to sell it are often methods that governments will take to punish negligent owners. But in many cases this isn’t enough.

More local governments are creating land banks to help developers and soon-to-be property owners find abandoned or foreclosed properties that are owned by the city. In some cities, such as Syracuse, N.Y., land banks can also take away properties from owners who owe property taxes and show no sign of paying.

In 2006, Cleveland, Ohio, created a land bank that collects properties from bank foreclosures, federal and state agencies, and even accepts donations. Then the land bank finds buyers for the properties, often by consolidating large tracts of vacant land owned by different people into a single parcel or coordinating the properties’ rehabilitation.

The cities of Philadelphia, Pa., and Columbus, Ohio, have begun creating land banks, taking away ownership of the properties from several local government agencies and consolidating them into a one-stop shop for vacant or city-owned properties. Philadelphia’s land bank also will be able to take properties from owners who owe property taxes. “It’s a wonderful tool for Philadelphia,” said State Rep. John Taylor. “If you don’t pay your taxes [now], nothing much happens. This will incentivize the city to move on properties quicker and ... dispose of them in a timely manner. You can change entire blocks at once now.”

Not everyone praises land banks. Some property owners who buy land to hold on to until its value increases claim that land banks strong-arm owners out of the property and don’t respect the rights of the owner.

Adam Lang, a Philadelphia-based land developer, argues that land banks add another layer of complication to an already complex system of bureaucracy. “The land bank isn’t designed to actually circulate stuff back into the private holding,” Lang told Philadelphia Weekly newspaper. “One of the reasons why a lot of this land already remains vacant is because the government won’t let it back into circulation. So, the idea that the way to solve that is to throw another, bigger, more expanded government agency on top of it to solve the failures of the original government’s goals?”

Activists like Christopher Sawyer of Philadelphia are also worried that land banks could be used to take away property from poorer residents, who pay less in property taxes, and give them to developers to increase tax revenue or for negligent landlords who own many properties to dump them on the city when they have made a fast buck.

What do you think?

What should cities do about vacant or foreclosed properties? How can a city turn properties that cost the government money into something that generates money? Does your town or city have a lot of vacant properties? Do you think a land bank would help your town? Join the discussion and let us know what you think!
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Comments
10/31/2017
Los Angeles
Phill
High
Homelessness is a huge problem so why not Just give the house to a homeless person. Problem solved. Two birds with one stone. This couldn't be more obvious?

5/10/2016
Detroit MI
Tae'Shon Williams
Mr.Ball University Prep
The government should fix up the messed up houses for the homeless people.

5/7/2016
Kewanee, IL
JGM (student)
Kewanee High School
These abandoned properties should be torn down, and if they can't be sold after a few years, then they should be turned into nature preserves. Plant a few trees. Add a few bushes. Maybe put in a path or two. Nothing has to be super high-maintenance, but not only would it eliminate the need for greenbelts, but it would look so nice. It would raise property values. Kewanee should have a land bank. There is SO MUCH abandoned property! There is the old boiler factory (closed in 2001, looks like it was closed in the 80's), and many abandoned houses. The abandoned houses are usually pretty spaced out, though. Some abandoned industrial complexes north of the railroad tracks were just torn down by the power company- something about the ground being radioactive. I'm pretty sure it used to be a watch factory or something. Who knows?

3/16/2016
Stroudsburg, PA
Paige
Mr. Hanna/ Stroudsburg JHS
I think abandoned properties in a town should be taken down. People could use them as "hideouts", because nobody would think to find them there. Also, what use are they doing by just sitting there? The property could be used for something useful that the town may need, or just a spot for a new home.

3/15/2016
Murrieta/CA
Trevor
Mr.J/Creekside High
The banks should be able to take the houses that are foreclosed, but as for the vacant houses the bank should be able to fine the owner but not confiscate the houses. Most of the vacant houses are being payed by the owners but they shouldn’t be let off so easy. If the vacant houses are left to rot the owners should be fined because they're making the city look bad and making the city loose business. The city can fix up the houses and instead of selling the houses they can rent them out and make more money generating more revenue for the city as well as the government. Most of the cities in my neighborhood are occupied but we do own a vacant house. We keep the house up but hoodlums in the city ruin anything and everything but we still keep the house clean. I think that the land banks wouldn't help unless they make sure the owner isn't going to pay then confiscate the house.

12/10/2015
Diamond Bar, CA
Natalie Sicairos P5
Wong/Lorbeer
I believe that the abandoned properties in towns or cities should be taken down because it could be used for illegal things. For example a hideout for drug usages. Not only can it be used for illegal usages but won'y make your town or city look so nice. Another thing you can do if you don't want to take it down is to sell the property. If the property is sold by the city or town it can gain money. When the land is sold it'll will be fixed up to either a house, some stores, or maybe even a hospital. I would highly suggest that the land should be sold instead of destroyed because once the land is destroyed what then. You won't have the money to build anything back up on the land. So I would pick to auction or sell the property because it is a win, win situation.

11/14/2014
Stroudsburg, PA
Karissa
Mr. Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
I think the cities and towns with the abandoned properties should either take the house down because people can use it as a hideout to make and sell drugs and other illegal things. Plus it makes your town look junky. They should turn it into something nice like a new house or a resort or something where when people pass it they want to stay because of how nice it is not hurry to get out of town because of how ugly it is. You want people to live and stay in your house not move on to the next city.

11/14/2014
Stroudsburg, PA
Steven
Mr. Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
It should be changed into something that is actually useful to people like a hospital. My town doesn't have a lot of vacant properties only some. I don't think a land bank would help the community because less money for the community so they would raise the money there.

11/14/2014
Stroudsburg,pa
Nataliya
Mr.hanna/ Stroudsburg JHS
I think cities should turn abandon properties into parks. That way people can have fun, and it won't damage the earth.

6/13/2014
Stroudsburg PA
Jasmine D
Mr. Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
I think that they should make it into something that is worth people's wait, and have them paying for something that was old before and turned into something new. I don't really know if my town has vacant places , but if they do' I don't really think the the bank would help, but if they were to help then I think they should give us some money to rebuild old vacant abandoned places.

6/12/2014
Stroudsburg, PA
Ashley C.
Mr.Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
What I think people should do with abandoned properties is they should auction it off. The person who ever wants to buy the land should be able to do whatever they would like to do with the property. It shouldn't be the citys right away because then the people who live in the city would feel like nothing. So I think citizens should also have the right to choose what to do I think everybody would be happy then.

1/21/2014
great neck NY
Aviva Sham
Ms.Davidson great neck north high school
I believe if a city has to deal with a abandoned property they should destroy the property. Instead of having a dilapidated area in the town someone can rent it or they landlord can make it a living space.

9/27/2013
Watertown, MA
Raj
Mr.Rimas
Most of the time an abandoned or unclaimed property is left as it is. Or the local government ends up owing it. Some properties also end up being sold for an unpaid loan installment. abandoned properties are a chance for the government to use, they should use the properties to make something useful for the public. Depending on the space of the property, the government could make a hospital, apartments, playground, a town library etc, to help and create a pleasant environment for the citizens. If the property is being sold, it does no good to anyone but to private businesses. Businesses purpose is to make profit, but the governments job is to provide service to the citizens. Abandoned or unclaimed properties can be a way to give shelter to homeless people. Instead of selling and making profit off it, the city can make homes for homeless and make a change in one's life.

9/27/2013
Watertown
Jessica
Rimas
I think cities should take the abandoned properties and auction them off for a decent amount of money. I also think that the city should take a vote on weather it should be sold, auctioned or destroyed. its not just the cities decision, its the people in the cities decision too.

9/25/2013
watertown ma
Jamie
Rimas/ Watertown
i think cities should deal with abandoned properties in a more economical and civic way. for example, theres are easilly 2 or more families per town/city in the USA whom are homeless and poor, now if there is one building that has nobody living in it why not give a family in need a roof to live under? that space is being taken up for what? nothing, why not put it to use

9/13/2013
Sidney, Montana
Joshua Alexander
Mr. Faulhaber/ Sidney High School
I think they could take a vote on if it should be demolished or not. Like if the building is any part of history it should not be demolished. If it is just in the way it needs to be demolished. You would make more money doing it this way and the citizens would be happy.

9/13/2013
Sidney/Montana
Layne
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
I think that they could potentially, demolish them and rebuild a nicer house. This way you would, be making a profit. Maybe not right away, but sooner or later you would be making a profit. Leaving it sitting is losing money rather than gaining it.

6/5/2013
Irving/TX
Dennys A.
Bradley/Nimitz
Land banks do provide a good way on bringing city revenue. Having them take control of the property seems more beneficial than any other alternatives helping cities and keeping crime rates down in the area. Also if people wanna profit from these abandoned houses they have to lower rates and make it more affordable to people because how it seems so far having them abandoned is only hurting them more.

5/31/2013
Irving/TX
but nguyen
Bradley/Nimitz
Vacant or foreclosed properties are a burden to cities and should be put into use to eliminate the costs of having it. If these properties continue to be unowned and uncared for, then value of these properties and all the other properties around it will drop. Banks need to step in and try to resell these properties to private owners in order to eliminate negative externalities that are caused by the vacant properties. Cities can also transform these vacant/foreclosed properties into beautiful public places like parks that will bring the value of other properties around it up. Yes, my city does have a lot of vacant properties. The house next to my house was a foreclosed house before my neighbor bought it. Walking 2 blocks down the street, there are three vacant properties. If these vacant properties would be owned and put into used, then the whole street will see more prosperous.

5/30/2013
Irving/Tx
Kevin
Bradley/Nimitz
If property owners are completely neglectful then it is completely justifiable for the city to hand property over to land banks. All these neglected properties only bring problems to communities and they are a drain on the citizens of a city. The uncared for homes lower property value and become centers of crime in neighborhoods. This in itself is a good enough reason for cities to confiscate land. Selling large plots of land is also a good directive for cities. Future developers who wish to buy large plots of land from cities can help by building on this land. In some cases this could create revenue towards a city. I do partly feel that banks are a bit to blame for so many foreclosures. Banks were too hasty in lending money for homes. Someone had to have done some form of financial checks on loaners, but it seems as if the banks were giving out money to anyone off the street. If nothing else I just feel that someone should be held accountable for the housing bubble burst.

5/29/2013
Irving/Texas
Timothy
Bradley/Nimitz
The number of homeless people in the "Greatest Nation on Earth" is staggering. However, the number of abandon properties is equally appalling. Abandon properties also give the cities the chance to help with another problem. Abandon properties that are foreclosed upon ought to be used to house those who don't have a place to go. Those who need a temporary home should be able to consult a list of homes that have been converted to house people who need an address in order to begin working and getting back upon their feet. I am not aware of a large number of abandon houses in my area, but there are likely some. No matter the number of houses, some people can be helped get on their feet. And maybe they will be able to become a homeowner themselves. As to the issue of land banks seizing properties based on property tax avoidance, land banks can be a useful tool for cities to gather resources and help their people get back on their feet.

5/28/2013
Irving/Tx
Kelsie
Bradley/Nimitz
My city doesn't have many vacant houses but in nearby cities such as South Dallas and Pleasant Grove, you can't drive a whole block without seeing one. Land banks are a good way of bringing the city revenue. Having them step in take over property helps the city as a whole and lower crime rates in the neighborhood. Cities should try to sell the properties at a lower rate so it could benefit both the city and the home buyers.

5/27/2013
Irving/Texas
Alan
Bradley/Nimitz
Cities should do something about the vacant and foreclosed properties. They should continue to fine them, of even have certain conditions that would allow the city to gain it and use it for something that would help the city. They could put businesses there, or build houses to sell or rent to others. I have not seen much vacant areas in my city, but I'm sure plenty exist and they are taking up much needed space. Land banks could most certainly be used to make it easier to deal with the land situation.

5/23/2013
Irving/TX
Kenia
Bradley/ Nimitz HS
If the property is marked as foreclosed, it means the owner has failed to pay the necessary fines after many warnings. If that's the case the banks should have the power to reposes the property. Vacated house's are a different story. If the house is vacant, but the owner is still paying the necessary fines, the only thing the city should be able to do is to add additional fines to the owner for the property. Depending on the properties location the city can knock down the house and sell the property as land. Irving has a few but not that many vacant properties. A land bank is a good idea but not necessary at the moment in Irving.

5/22/2013
Irving/Texas
Grace
Bradley/Nimitz
Not many ideas come up when the question of what to do with the foreclosed houses, therefore it makes sense to let the banks take care of them. It seems wrong to take them away from the owner, but maybe a ticket or a fine could be given to them. The cities can have projects to transform the abandoned properties into a more attractive looking site. That way instead of people ignoring it, they will gather around it. Irving has its share of vacant properties, and it is right for the banks to step in.

5/22/2013
Irving/Tx
Elyssa K.
Bradley/Nimitz
The banks should be able to take the houses that are foreclosed, but as for the vacant houses the bank should be able to fine the owner but not confiscate the houses. Most of the vacant houses are being payed by the owners but they shouldn’t be let off so easy. If the vacant houses are left to rot the owners should be fined because they're making the city look bad and making the city loose business. The city can fix up the houses and instead of selling the houses they can rent them out and make more money generating more revenue for the city as well as the government. Most of the cities in my neighborhood are occupied but we do own a vacant house. We keep the house up but hoodlums in the city ruin anything and everything but we still keep the house clean. I think that the land banks wouldn't help unless they make sure the owner isn't going to pay then confiscate the house.

5/22/2013
Irving/Texas
Edgar
Bradley/Nimitze
Cities should help maintain these vacant properties as in the long run it will benefit the city as a whole. This is due to the fact that the vacant property will soon find an owner. The city can turn the vacant properties into money by making parks or other facilities.The city I live in does not have too many vacant properties.

5/21/2013
Irving/Texas
Samantha N. S.
Bradley/Nimitz
Vacant and foreclosed homes should go to a property bank- the owners clearly don't care for the land and actions should be taken that better the city. Rather than breeding crime and financial burden, it should be creating revenue and attracting soon-to-be property owners who are looking to buy. My city doesn't have many abandoned properties, but I have seen a couple. There are a couple around my neighborhood that just sit there- the grass growing ridiculously long and the lawn becoming overwhelmed with weeds. It would be better for the home to become foreclosed and sold to any interested home/property buyers through the use of a land bank.

5/20/2013
Irving/Texas
Zachery
Bradley/Nimitz
I'm not sure how I feel about land banks because it can go both ways. Land banks could either help the town or just make things worse for citizens with not very much income. However, here in my city, its doing a great job on getting rid of run down buildings and foreclosed property, I rarely ever see any homes or property's that were foreclosed on. In addition, if a property was foreclosed or vacant for several months or simply in a bad part of town, I think the city should try and turn it into some sort of community park or something the would effect the neighborhood in a positive way. About a year ago, my city had actual renovated and cleaned up a street that was known for illegal activity and built brand new homes and put on a community wide block party to celebrate the positive benefits!

5/20/2013
Irving/Texas
April K.
Bradley/Nimitz
Cities should use land banks to deal with vacant and foreclosed properties. The land banks can really help out the government since people who are suppose to be paying the property taxes either abandoned the properties or have are not able to. The abandoned properties are also bringing in more crimes to that place and lowering the value of properties nearby. Therefore, it is better to create land banks with the property to make the property beneficiary and not harming. A land bank however, would not benefit my city very much because there are many vacant properties here that I know of. If there was then it would be a great idea for land banks to be used.

5/20/2013
Irving/Texas
Yessica
Bradley/Nimitz
When a city has abandoned property it makes the city have a more distasteful, gloomy feel to it. That is why cities must do something with the unattended property. The city should sell or develop the land if the property has not been paid fully. If the property has been paid then the owners have the right to do what he or she feels is okay however the city should put restriction on the safety conditions. A land-bank could help however it could be a huge disadvantage to poorer citizens. My city does have some closed property however it does not bother me because I know someday that the closed down place will become a thriving business.

5/20/2013
Irving/Tx
Joshua B
Bradley/Nimitz
I think that since the government is going to end up paying for this peice of property anyway. Then they should knock it down and build something meaningful that people would acually love to pay for. They should build a playground for the little children or a town garden. That way the property is being paid for and the people are enjoing it at the same time.

5/17/2013
Irving/Texas
Misael
Bradley/Nimitz
The best option for cities to solve this problem would be to simply create a program to stop foreclosure's in the first place so that there isn't a problem later. Cities are on the right path by creating land banks that turn properties that are really a burden to the city into a genuine cash cow for them. The city of Irving on the other hand does not currently have such a program for abandoned properties but would be a great idea because it would turn a profit for the cities and help surrounding house owners.

5/16/2013
Irving/TX
Gabe
Bradley/Nimitz
It is true that when negligent owners abandon property, they also refuse to pay any of the taxes that are tied to that property, but how is it that this is a problem? The city has no requirement to continue providing utilities if a owner does not pay them. Just because the owner no longer takes care of the property, it doesn't mean that it is now the cities responsibility. The city isn't really losing money, it's just making less, but it could be making more, by ceasing the property and either tearing down the existing structures and selling the plot of land, or just selling the land how it is. The owner isn't paying for the land anymore, so it should just go back into the hands of the city with no cost to the city. Take lemons. Make lemonade.

5/16/2013
Irving/Texas
Cody
Bradley/Nimitz
Cities that have abandoned properties should look to sell them at a cheaper price. Everyone is always about how much profit can they make. If we would just allow land banks to sell them at a cheap price, people would buy them. We would eliminate having to tax and fine people to try and make money back. What brings more profit fining someone over and over, or selling it, for just a little less. This would stop crimes happening at these locations, and would help the cities and states make money.

5/15/2013
Irving, TX
TJ Wright
Bradley/ Nimitz High School
In order to get rid of the vacant locations would be to sell them to new, trustworthy owners. Selling them at cheaper prices could end up hurting the state governments because they would be loosing the profit the could gain from the property. However, that would be the least painful way to get rid of them. I agree with Adam lang when he say, "the idea that the way to solve that is to throw another, bigger, more expanded government agency on top of it..." He discusses how throwing another government agency to go through would only complicate the process and require more time and money to fix the problem. It just shows how the government plans to fix problems, fixing a government problem with another government agency obviously would just make things worse. With the vacant houses in my city, they are being sold and put on the market for other residents to buy.

5/13/2013
Irving/Texas
Monica A.
Bradley/Nimitz
Cities should try to sell these properties at a cheaper price. Not only would someone buy the property, but it would be one less thing the city would have to deal with. The city would make a lot more money just by selling properties at cheaper prices. Land banks would benefit a lot of people, especially those who have less money. It would be a lot of help to those less fortunate.

5/10/2013
Irving/Tx
Crystal
Bradley/Nimitz
In my city, we have a lot of odd abandoned houses or buildings. It makes me question about my family's safety around these places. Why? We are unsure of what lurks in there. It is distasteful to look at when your city are upgrading. Sell it, tear it down, make use of it. We need to occupy it.

5/10/2013
Irving/ exas
Tasia
Bradley/Nimitz
I agree that abonded properties bring down towns and cities and also attract crime, and make houses around them lose value. With houses that are abonded and vacant instead of paying money to keep it up they should try and sell it for as cheap as possible that way it can go on market fast and get off the market fast, also they would make more money. If it dosent sell they could try an tear it down an put something there that the community needs and that would create more jobs. The land bank would most likely help the town but their not going to wait forever,

5/7/2013
Irving?Texas
Samnatha S
Bradley?Nimitz
Any Vacant property should have a period of time where demand of ownership should be allowed. After this period of time passes it should now become property of the city. The City's priority with the property should be to put it for good use, making it available to the homeless, or child care to begin with. Of course this has to have a program over viewing it, and rules and regulations should apply.

5/4/2013
Rudyard Montana
Aron
Mrs. Campbell North Star
What cities should do with vacant properties should be to better the cities. They could use the homes as low income housing, or it could even be used as homes for the homeless. The government could even sell the homes as a big group to big companines or auction them off to generate more income. My town does have vacant properties but the location of them doesnt do to much in the means of gaining some money from them. So a land bank wouldnt do to much. So this is my view on vacant properties.

5/3/2013
Irving/Texas
Delaney
Bradley/Nimitz
In my city there are a lot of properties that have been foreclosed on and many businesses that have also been out of operation because of hard economic times. These areas make my city look unsavory because they can't be kept up well: yards are a foot over grown, apartments catch on fire because of squatters living in them, and unkempt properties make the houses around them drop in value. Land banks would help my town a lot because it could turn the properties quickly, and give them to someone who has the means to manage them. A program like this would be something my city could greatly benefit from because it would draw prospective homeowners and businessmen into town and restore the once nice homes that are now vacant into something great again.

5/2/2013
Benson/ AZ
Rhiannon
Sorensen/ Benson
A foreclosed building should be immediately turned into something useful, I live in a town where buildings are foreclosed then just sit there. They are unattended, and should be used in some way that will benefit everyone.

5/2/2013
Irving/Texas
Helen
Bradley/Nimitz
Land banks are an a good way of dealing with abandoned properties in cities in which empty plots of land seem to abound. Our nation has a history of expansion and constantly seeking fruitful land that will sustain our families, in order to take care of the legacy our forefathers left us we must make sure that the land is not just a breeding ground for crime but a useful source of income for the government of the city and the state. The government takes our taxes in order to provide us with services we need and to fulfill their duty, if people get around paying their taxes then we will not receive the services we expect and need. A land bank makes sure the land is being used adequately and that it generates money for the government.

5/2/2013
Irving/Texas
April S.
Bradley/Nimitz
Cities with foreclosed properties should charge the owners fines just like they have been doing. The owners are responsible for the houses no matter what. If the owners didn't want that burden, they should sale the property to another person. The properties could be used to temporary house for people who are visiting the city for a couple of weeks at a time. In a big city like Las Vegas, they could overcharge for housing systems like that. My town doesn't have a lot of vacant properties that we are made aware of. If it was a problem in my city, we would probably be notified of it. If we had issues like this, a land bank would be useful, but since there doesn't seem to be this problem here, I don't see that we really need them.

4/30/2013
Irving/Texas
Darian
Bradley/Nimitz
We should build and make things that will benefit the cities. Before you build anything you have to make sure the community agrees with it. Irving has a ton of vacant lots that haven't been touched in years. I think a land bank would really help Irving with the vacant lots . A land bank in Irving will help the gain a lot of profit. Also it will turn the whole city around.

4/29/2013
Irving/Texas
Maddie
Bradley/Nimitz
It's a good thing I'm not the mayor of Irving, because I have no idea what we should do about vacant or foreclosed properties. However, if a property is vacant or foreclosed, the city should be able to take it, fix it up, and sell it in order to make money. I think land banks have both positive and negative affects, but I'm not sure if Irving needs one. I haven't seen a lot of vacant properties around Irving, but that doesn't mean they aren't out there.

4/28/2013
Irving/Texas
Wesley
Bradley/Nimitz
There is no skirting around the fact that vacant and unattended property is a breeding ground for criminal activity. As a result, governments don’t really want to be responsible for something that is in no way advantageous for a city. But, in order to enforce the payment of land taxes and property guidelines, a set of repercussions must be in place, a.k.a. confiscation. Land banks come into the picture and actually take away this unwanted, dirty problem of the government. Land banks take all of the abused and vacant land that is costly to hold on to and puts it all to a beneficial use. This is accomplished by finding buyers who will actually take the land and use it instead of letting is sit and collect criminal dust. Now, property owners may see land banks as a negative addition to the already complex world of taxes. But truly, this distaste is only due to the added pressure to actually pay the land taxes, an unplanned reality that is actually beneficial. Land owners have to stay on top of their taxes, and those who can’t then lose their land to someone who can. Land is a vital resource and an investment. Unused land is the same is burning precious money, an act that we can in no way allow in our debt-filled country. Land banks are a great system to ensure that all of our resources are being used effectively and efficiently. From personal experience, my city of Irving appears to be on top of land vacancy. I don’t see many neglected plots of land.

4/28/2013
Irving/Tx
Jessica W
Bradley/Nimitz
I think cites should put those properties into land banks because that is the best way for them to get sold quickly to people who can actually afford to take care of them. Also if there is land not being in use then the city can use it to build places for people to use like gas stations or other places that are greatly needed around town. For example my city does have a lot of vacant lots and eye sores that I think should be taken care of so a land bak would be very helpful.

4/27/2013
Irving/Texas
Giancarlo
Bradley/Nimitz
Land banks seem to be a good method to get rid of unused properties. These banks would people who need a place to stay in one. The abandoned properties are taking up space in a community but will be put to use. In my city, there were many of abandoned places. However, the city tore them down because it couldn't find a proper use. I feel that a land bank could bring some change to my city but the effects vary.

4/26/2013
Irving/TX
Kelly
Bradley/Nimitz
Cities should lower the prices on the forclosed and abandoned properties because they'll make money of the new owner who buys it. Land banks would be helpful to the city for making money for them when they need it, but it could also be hurtful towards the people who live in that city.

4/26/2013
Benson, AZ
Kourtney
Sorensen
Land banks would be a helpful and important thing to use for abandoned properties where I live. It would help people to find homes that are having trouble finding them and it would be at a low cost since it is property that has been abandoned. Also those that are not paying their taxes would stop costing the government money and something could be done with those properties as well.

4/24/2013
Rudyard, MT
Dono
Mrs.Campbell Northstar
I think that the cities should look at the abandoned properties and see what they can do with it, like make houses or apartments for a lower price for the poor people so they can have place to stay, or the cities can make public parks so people can have fun there. I agree with Krystal from benson,AZ and Leslie from Irving, Texas.

4/24/2013
benson/az
alexa
sorensen/benson
old abandoned properties should been torn down and new houses should be made or turned into a shelter

4/24/2013
Benson/AZ
Krystal
Sorensen/Benson
If a city has a land bank, it should build housing at a cheaper rate on that land. We all know the economy isn't at it's greatest right now. The land banks end up with the land because people can't afford to pay their taxes, maintain the land, or both. If prices aren't reduced, the land banks will have lots of land and no prospective buyers because no one can afford it.

4/19/2013
Irving/Texas
Leslie
Bradley /Nimitz
Cities should make houses or places for people to live in at a cheaper cost. Because as an example by were a live there used to be a lot of trees in a field that looked like if the property owner did not take care of the land. So once the city was over the land the land was sold and a agency that builds house build a community there. Now many of the students that live there attend the feeder school close to that community . So having banks make a living to people that need houses helps many families because they are new houses with the opportunity for children to attend schools nearby. Also if there is land not in use the city should build gas stations or places that could help drivers to get car fixed. Because as a life experience my dad is a truck drive and he always tells me that he has seen many houses old falling apart by the highway. Those places would be good to have gas stations, resting area or have a place to fix cars. And that way the city will not bring bad reputation to there city but will bring help to people. In the area were I live there is not a lot of property left alone maybe two properties but not a lot as if we were by the highway far in the country side were there is abounded houses or properties.

4/19/2013
Benson, AZ
Antonio
Merv/Benson
Back in my day w used to explore abandoned houses and what not, its more fun than a playground and it gets pretty sketchy at times. i think the city's should let them be until someone buys the property and fixes it up real nice.

4/19/2013
Benson/AZ
James
Sorenson/BHS
honestly, i think that they should be the party spots, put em up for auction set some ground rules and then you have one spot that people can go and have a good time with, its under the supervision of the person that bought the house, they can fix it up and bam, instant party. personaly it sounds like a great idea cuz i would do it in a heart beat, then you dont have people at other peoples homes destroying them and then people dont have to worry about getting their actual house trashed.

4/19/2013
Irving/Texas
Yeny
Bradley/Nimitz
Cities should try to resale foreclosure properties or rent vacant properties since there are so many people that dreams to have a house in which their children can play around in. If cities do want to get rid of the foreclosure properties, they should use the money in things that the people around the community need like recreational places for children around that neighborhood can go and have fun. Most cities that have vacant or foreclosure properties either resale them or demolish them to create something new or add on to something, for example, three streets down my neighborhood, the city dismissed a family that lived in a house right behind one of the city parks to demolish the house and create something that the people around the neighborhood doesn't even know about. Land banks wouldn't be a way to get vacant properties because you basically are leaving people without a home who are actually paying their home with whatever sacrifice and for low income people to just get their home taken away is just unfair. Cities should find ways to help people keep their homes instead of taking it away from them.

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