Lawmakers say banks should maintain homes in foreclosure limbo

Apr 5, 2013

A pair of state lawmakers is pushing legislation to stop banks from abandoning property and ruining communities.

Senator Timothy Kennedy says Bank of America owns 28 blighted homes that are sitting abandoned and vacant in the Town of Cheektowaga alone.

A bank-home on Gary Lane that Kennedy and Ryan say has fallen into disrepair.
Credit Chris Caya/WBFO News

"This home here at 35 Gary Lane has fallen into disrepair as a result of Bank of America dragging its feet through the foreclosure process," Kennedy said.

The proposed legislation would require banks to help homeowners avoid default in the first place. If a home is abandoned in the foreclosure process, banks would be forced to cover all property maintenance costs.

Assemblyman Sean Ryan says keeping home stuck in foreclosure for years and letting them rot is unacceptable.

"It's destabilizing to our neighborhoods and we can't have more of it. So it's about time that we put rules into place that hold the big banks accountable for the impacts that they have in our neighborhoods," Ryan said.