Chowchilla has enacted a program that could lead to foreclosure for owners who do not keep their property up to code.
Written by David Castellon
The City of Chowchilla is getting tough with the owners of properties that have fallen into disrepair and become eyesores.
Earlier this month, Medvetta Financial, which handles the City’s delinquent collections, sent notices to property owners with excessive liens warning that the city could foreclose on those properties unless they’re brought up to code.
It’s part of a program the Chowchilla City Council approved Nov. 28, 2017, intended to increase pressure on owners of properties with outstanding code enforcement violations.
“At that meeting the Council voted to create a lien foreclosure program where properties with excessive liens for being out of compliance with Code Enforcement will be subject to foreclosure,” City Administrator Brian Haddix said in a press release.
“Medvetta Financial contacts owners with outstanding Code Enforcement liens, giving them 30 days to pay the lien, Medvetta’s fee and fix the original violation. If they do not, the property goes into foreclosure and is sold. The new owner pays off the lien and Medvetta’s fees, as well as bringing the structure up to city standards,” he explained.
Haddix reported that responses to the actions so far have been positive for the city, with the owners of two properties reporting that they’ve been approached by builders wanting to buy, renovate and resell the homes.
In addition, Haddix said in the release, “City Hall has been fielding calls from other landowners with liens anxious to pay them off and get into compliance with the code.”
“We’re serious about Code Enforcement. Our residents take pride in their homes and deserve to have the City stand behind them by enforcing our code enforcement laws,” Mayor Dennis Haworth said in the press release.
“As word gets out that the city is serious about protecting our quality of life, we expect to see others out there cleaning up unsafe properties and hauling off their junk. This isn’t just curb appeal, it’s about being responsible for keeping your property and our city safe and presentable.”