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NJ Foreclosures Could Turn Into Affordable Housing

Are abandoned properties a problem in your area? If so, a measure headed to the full New Jersey Assembly could be the solution.

Kevork Djansezian, Getty Images

The New Jersey Residential Foreclosure Transformation Act, sponsored by several Assembly Democrats, would be aimed at transforming foreclosed properties into affordable housing. The bill would establish the “New Jersey Foreclosure Relief Corporation” for the purpose of purchasing foreclosed residential properties from institutional lenders and dedicating them for occupancy as affordable housing.

“Abandoned properties are a major problem, particularly in urban areas, and as they erode, they drag down the value of other properties in the neighborhood,” said Jerry Green, Assembly Speaker Pro Tempore (D). “This bill provides a practical solution for residents who have limited financial means and are in need of affordable housing, and for communities that are dealing with the blight, reduced property values and illegal activity that is synonymous with vacant properties.”

Reports show more than 100,000 New Jersey homeowners are dealing with foreclosures, according to sponsors of the measure.

“The crisis not only impacts families, but entire communities,” said Assemblywoman Mila Jasey (D). “As these homes are foreclosed, they become nuisances for residents, municipalities and law enforcement.”

The bill would also include incentives for towns to participate in the transformation process. Bonus credits towards affordable housing obligations would be awarded to municipalities that dedicate properties as affordable housing.

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