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Zombie Foreclosures: 2014 Florida Elections – Real Estate Economy in South Florida

By Oppenheim Law on Deficiency Judgments, Foreclosure, Real Estate & Roy Oppenheim

Foreclosure defense and real estate attorney, Roy Oppenheim, “From the Trenches.” As the political season starts to heat up, I wanted to talk a little bit about the current gubernatorial election here in the state of Florida. Specifically, we have Governor Rick Scott, who’s running against Charlie Crist, and what we really have in the campaign is this 900-pound invisible gorilla that’s literally in this campaign. And let me discuss what I’m talking [inaudible 00:00:36].

In the state of Florida, we literally have billions of dollars of homes that were, at one time, attempted to be foreclosed by the banks, and for whatever reason, those homes were not successfully foreclosed. And so, many of those homes are abandoned, in some cases, the original homeowners still live in them. In other cases, people are renting those homes out, but these zombie foreclosures are really a huge drag on the Florida real estate market.

The folks who own these homes don’t even know if they own these homes, can’t resell the homes, they can’t refinance these homes. And so, these homes, this real estate, is literally an unlocked resource that can’t be tapped to help move the economy forward. Because every time there’s a transfer, there’s a bank involved, there are surveyors involved, there are title insurance companies involved, there are lawyers involved. And of course, you have Home Depots, and you have the furniture companies.

All that is not happening, all that stuff is gummed up because these homes are trapped, and the reason they’re trapped is because the political establishment hasn’t come to the realization that something has to be done about these zombie foreclosures. So I’m telling both candidates, “This is probably one of the larger issues that you have not addressed once in this campaign. Both of you, I would like to have you address this in the gubernatorial election.” Roy Oppenheim, “From the Trenches,” thank you.