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Tax Foreclosure and Redevelopment

October 18, 2013

Carolina County has been working with its largest municipality, Tar Heel Town, to  redevelop one of Tar Heel Town’s more dilapidated neighborhoods.  Many of the properties in this neighborhood are owned by absentee landlords who fail to maintain them properly.  … Continued

Tax Foreclosures and Competing Liens

September 13, 2012

When property owners stop paying their property taxes, it’s a good bet that they’ve been ignoring other obligations concerning those properties as well.  Weeds grow chest-high, houses slowly crumble, and neighbors begin to use the lots as informal trash dumps. … Continued

Targeting Troubled Neighborhoods for Housing Code Inspections

March 20, 2012

Along Broken Dreams Boulevard, not far from Main Street, an abandoned mill overlooks a troubled neighborhood. Once a thriving residential area with inexpensive mill housing (single family homes and duplexes), the neighborhood is now typical of a declining mill village. … Continued

Building Occupancy and Turning on the Juice

February 2, 2012

My blog from December 15 of last year (“Preoccupied with Occupancy Certificates: Part I”) was intended to provide an introduction to the use of a certificates of occupancy (CO) by local inspections agencies to ensure that a development project is … Continued

Minimum Housing: A Way Around Residential Inspection Limits?

September 20, 2011

Tim Taylor is both a housing inspector and the appointed minimum housing public officer for the town of Tooltime, North Carolina. For years he has conducted periodic inspections of dwellings throughout the town in accordance with his town’s periodic inspection … Continued

Repairing unfit houses—and then recouping the costs

March 9, 2010

[2011 UPDATE: For more detail on this topic, see the following 2011 book: Housing Codes for Repair and Maintenance: Using the General Police Power and Minimum Housing Statutes to Prevent Dwelling Deterioration] An earlier post on minimum housing ordinances (MHOs) … Continued