Land reutilization brings homeowner relief

By Ivy Potter - [email protected]

The Scioto County Land Reutilization Corporation has taken advantage of the Neighborhood Initiative Program, An Ohio Hardest Hit Fund Project, to change the appearance of Scioto County neighborhoods.

The goal of the NIP being to stabilize values of property by removing and greening dilapidated properties in specific areas in efforts to prevent future foreclosures for existing homeowners. NIP helps prevent foreclosure by decreasing the decline in home values, and provides an option for homeowners who are not able to sell a home they can afford no longer. Foreclosures often result in troubled sales, which weaken property values, and contribute to the presence of vacant and blighted homes, making demolition an essential component to stabilize home values.

“We’ve demolished 46 homes now, these are blighted, condemned, burnt homes. We don’t take ownership and tear down functional homes. Some people think that’s what we’re about, but it’s not. We are eligible to be reimbursed for $2,725,000. We do the homes, we tear them down. We go through the whole process, there’s asbestos abatement among other things. Our goal is to stabilize property values. We are hoping that anyone who has a property that is burnt or condemned, but can’t afford to tear it down, that they will donate it to us. We can take it and tear it down. A lot of people can’t afford to do that, but don’t want to go through foreclosure and they continue to pay the taxes on the property.” said Michele Throckmorton, director of the Scioto County Land Reutilization Corporation.

The city of Portsmouth has donated a lot that they have taken ownership of through foreclosure.

The SCLRC took control of its first property in May 2017, and is in the process of taking ownership of 25 additional properties.

“If anyone would want to do that we would be happy to take the property, but they need to be blighted, burnt, or condemned properties,” said Throckmorton.

The benefits that come along with the demolition of these blighted properties is great for both the property owners, and the community.

“It increases property values while getting rid of properties considered eyesores,” Throckmorton said. “We’ve also had problem with squatters taking up in these abandoned or condemned properties, often using them as facilities for drug use. This process is eliminating those instances.”

Anyone who has a stripped home that is no longer livable, can contact the SCLRC and receive up to $2,500 in exchange for their property.

Throckmorton explains that by ridding the neighborhood of these neglected properties, it is improving the overall atmosphere of the community and restoring the properties to the tax roles.

By Ivy Potter

[email protected]

Reach: Ivy Potter (740) 353-3101 Extension 1932

Reach: Ivy Potter (740) 353-3101 Extension 1932