NewsLocal News / February 26, 2014

Bill To Speed Abandoned Property Sales Moves To House

Allie Nash - TheStatehouseFile.com
Bill To Speed Abandoned Property Sales Moves To House

Those looking to invest in abandoned housing could enjoy a faster process under a bill approved by the House Government and Regulatory Reform Committee.

Senate Bill 422 would let buyers take ownership of homes that had been deemed by a judge to be abandoned as soon as a tax sale is finished. Current law requires buyers to wait a year, during which time the previous owner can pay back taxes and redeem the property.

State Rep. Justin Moed, D-Indianapolis, said that’s meant in part to stop investors from buying properties in hopes that the owner will pay the back taxes – along with required interest – to the bidder.

“This is the best way to ensure these properties end up in the hands of people who want to fix them,” Moed said. “It’s a fast track sales process for abandoned properties.”

The bill also requires out-of-state investors to register as Indiana companies to bid at tax sales. Wayne Greeson, an attorney representing out-of-state investors, said that’s a problem.

“Indiana is a favorable state for investors, especially for those out of state, and this bill will hurt that,” Gresson said.

But others were in favor of this bill, saying that Hoosiers will benefit.

The bill passed the committee unanimously.