What Does It Mean When a House Gets Condemned?

House Gets CondemnedIf you have a house that’s been condemned, you need to act fast. Owning a condemned house is a stressful situation, and it’s also something that you’re required to address. When a house is condemned, it sets in motion legal events that could ultimately result in the loss of the property.

What Is a Condemned House?

A condemned house is a house that has been determined by the government to be unsuitable for living. You might think that as a tenant of your own home, you get to decide what’s “suitable.” But a condemned home can be actively dangerous. If there are structural issues, it could fall and hurt those around it. It takes a lot to get a house condemned, but perhaps not as much as you might think. A major leak that causes mold and rot issues, for instance, could cause a house to become condemned.

When a house is condemned, the government will require that it be vacated immediately. A notice will be posted both on the door of the house and for the public.

Can You Fix a Condemned House?

Yes, but not without a lot of work. First, you need to communicate your intentions with the building authority. Usually, when a house is condemned, it is no longer safe to be entered. Without permission, it’s not possible to work on the property. 

Therefore, you’ll need permission to work on the house. Then you will need to get it repaired, renovated, or remediated to the point that the housing authority will reevaluate it.

Usually a house isn’t fixed but rather knocked down. Most homes that are condemned are easier to knock down and rebuild rather than to make repairs. But there are also times when a home may be condemned for an issue that’s fairly easy to mitigate (at least comparatively), such as a home that simply has to go through mold remediation. 

Can You Sell a Condemned House?

You can’t sell a condemned house, but you can sell the property it sits on, with the assumption the house itself will be knocked down. But that doesn’t mean that it’ll be easy to sell condemned land. Most mortgage lenders don’t want to let their borrowers purchase property that’s condemned, even to knock down existing structures. Mortgage lenders don’t even like to lend money to just buy land because it isn’t habitable and is, therefore, more difficult to sell.

What Happens to a Mortgage When a Home Is Condemned?

Most mortgages require that a homeowner take reasonable care of a home. If a home is condemned, the mortgage lender may very well recall the loan or send the property into foreclosure. This can be bad for your credit and further complicate the process of selling or rehabilitating the property. If a home is condemned, it’s best to fix it as quickly as possible (if at all possible) so that a lender doesn’t foreclose on it. If the lender is interested in foreclosure, a short sale can be an easy way out, but that still does require that you be able to find a buyer for the land itself. 

If you’re trying to sell condemned land, you’re more likely to be able to get a bite from a cash buyer. A cash buyer doesn’t have to satisfy the terms of a mortgage company; they can just make the decision to buy. Still, it may be better for you to knock down the property first.

As you can see, the best thing to do is make sure your home doesn’t get condemned in the first place. If your home is skirting the boundaries of getting condemned, it’s better to sell it now before it becomes any worse. Sometimes people can’t keep up with the repairs and renovations their home really needs. If this is you, contact Frank Buys Houses today. At FBH, we can work with you to find a fair price for your home.