Foreclosed properties could fall under nuisance law penalties 

click to enlarge This building at 2010 Keith St. in the Bayview is a problem property which has prompted complaints to The City. - MIKE KOOZMIN/THE S.F. EXAMINER
  • mike koozmin/The s.f. examiner
  • This building at 2010 Keith St. in the Bayview is a problem property which has prompted complaints to The City.

Owners of foreclosed properties in San Francisco, such as banks, are coming under fire for allowing some of those homes to fall into disrepair.

Supervisor Malia Cohen, whose District 10 includes the Bayview, has introduced legislation that would subject foreclosed properties to The City’s nuisance law, which allows for court abatement injunctions and fines. It also would triple the nuisance penalties for owners of 10 or more foreclosed properties.

The proposal is an attempt to address one of the impacts of the foreclosure crisis.

“I’ve seen time and time again owners of foreclosed properties leaving them deteriorated, accumulating trash, graffiti and other nuisances,” Cohen said. “These properties remain in despair for months — even years — subjecting tenants, neighbors and communities to the physical blight. These conditions, no matter who owns the property, are unacceptable and in clear violation of The City’s blight laws.

“But I continue to see owners of foreclosed properties completely disregard requests from The City and the community to abate nuisances.”

One such problem property is in the Bayview at 2010 Keith St., which has prompted complaints to The City. The trustee of the home is U.S. Bank, but it said the responsibility for the property’s condition belongs to Bank of America.

Complaints on file with The City from January and November 2011 report “garbage, debris continuously at property,” “transients living in cars,” “cars parked on grass” and “trash all over yard.” Bank of America was unable to comment by press time.

There were 2,277 notices of default recorded for residential, commercial and industrial properties during the 2010-11 fiscal year, and 927 foreclosures, according to Cohen’s legislation.

The legislation would require approval by the Board of Supervisors to become law. It is expected to undergo a public hearing before the board’s Land Use and Economic Development Committee.

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