Good News from the War on Zombie Properties

Good News from the War on Zombie Properties

In his article “Breaking Down Blight”*, Robert Klein heralds the use of polycarbonate clearboarding to be a turning point in the national war against the blight of vacant and abandoned properties.

Zombie House Eugene

“One of the most significant changes that built positive momentum in the fight against blight occurred in early November 2016, when Fannie Mae made the game-changing decision to pre-approve the use of polycarbonate clearboarding on pre-foreclosure properties. The decision marked the first time a GSE had expanded its reimbursement policies to include a 21st-century technology that is far superior to plywood”.  Even more noteworthy, according to Klein, is the measure Ohio Governor John Kasich recently signed into law banning the use of plywood on vacant and abandoned properties.

Klein explains how the advantages of polycarbonate clearboarding over plywood include enhanced appearance, safety for first responders who cannot see into a plywood secured house and the overall stability of the material (which lasts longer and is harder to break into).  Although more expensive to install, the long run economic gains of using polycarbonate clearboarding over plywood are significant.  Klein states that over half the total cost of a foreclosure’s impact on neighboring properties comes from the fact that the property is abandoned.

Referring to the statistic that 1.3 million homes in America are vacant, Klein claims that replacing plywood with polycarbonate clearboarding will change “practically overnight the appearance of some of the most distressed neighborhoods across the country”.

Read the whole article here:



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