Minneapolis Added to Complaint Over Foreclosed Properties
The National Fair Housing Alliance has recently added Minneapolis to a complaint against U.S. Bank. NFHA claims that U.S. Bank has failed to maintain foreclosed properties located in minority neighborhoods in Minneapolis in the same way it maintains homes in mostly white neighborhoods.
The complaint was originally made in 2012 and named three cities. The complaint relies on a law which requires banks to maintained foreclosed properties regardless of the location of the property.
The complaint follows an investigation by NFHA. In this investigation NFHA investigated 28 foreclosed homes in Minneapolis. Representatives from the organization claim that properties in mainly African American neighborhoods were more likely to have open windows or doors, to have trash in the yards and have untended yards than homes in other areas. In fact, the group claims that 78 percent of the foreclosed homes in minority neighborhoods had trash in the yard while just 20 percent of the homes in other area had garbage.
U.S. Bank claims that it was not contacted during this investigation by the NFHA. Therefore, the company says it has no way to verify the claims that are being made. Furthermore, the company argues that it is merely the trustee over many of these properties and therefore has no legal right to do any upkeep on the properties.
Regulatory compliance issues, such as this, can be difficult for many property owners to understand. Furthermore, in some instances these issues can lead to civil litigation. Often violations of these laws can lead to a recovery for property owners. Therefore, it is important for property owners to understand their rights when they suspect violations.
Image Source: TC Daily Planet
Source: Pioneer Press, “U.S. Bank, housing group, at odds over Minneapolis properties,” Tom Webb, Oct. 8, 2014