For a good starting point to learn about vacant property registration ordinances (aka VPR or VPRO), check out Vacant Property Registration Ordinances, 39 Real Estate Law Journal 6 (2010). In addition, below are links to VPR-related (1) national websites and databases, (2) publications, (3) recent judicial decisions, (4) Midwest-focused websites, and (5) blog posts.
National Websites and Databases:
- Safeguard Property VPR Ordinance Database (with links to ordinances)
- Mortgage Contracting Services Ordinance Database (with links to ordinances)
- Center for Community Progress: Toolkit on VPR
- Vacant Property Research Initiative
- Pace Law School, Legal Research Guide for Vacant Property
- Kermit Lind, Perspectives on Abandoned Houses in a Time of Dystopia, 29(2) Probate & Property (2015) (SSRN).
- Andrea Clark, Amidst the Walking Dead: Judicial and Nonjudicial Approaches for Eradicating Zombie Mortgages, 65 Emory L.J. (forthcoming 2015) (SSRN).
- Benton C. Martin, Federalism and Municipal Innovation: Lessons from the Fight Against Vacant Properties, 46 Urb. Law. 361 (2014) (SSRN).
- Thomas James Fitzpatrick IV, et al., Can Local Housing Ordinances Prevent Neighborhood Destabilization?, Working Paper (2014) (SSRN).
- Margaret Louise Smith, No Property Left Behind: An Exploration of Abandoned Property Policies, Masters Thesis (2014) (pdf).
- David Kane, Restoration Remedies for Remaining Residents, 61 UCLA L. Rev. 812 (2014) (pdf).
- Geoffry Walsh, National Consumer Law Center, Fast Track Foreclosure Laws: Are They Headed in the Right Direction? (2014) (pdf).
- David P. Weber, Zombie Mortgages, Real Estate, and the Fallout for the Survivors (2014) (SSRN).
- Revitalizing American Cities (Eds. Susan M. Wachter, Kimberly A. Zeuli) (2013) (Google Books).
- Dan Immergluck, Yun Sang Lee, & Patrick Terranova, New Data on Local Vacant Property Registration Ordinances, 15(2) Cityscape: A Journal of Policy Development and Research 259 (2013) (pdf).
- Katie Buitrago, Woodstock Institute, Deciphering Blight: Vacant Buildings Data Collection in the Chicago Six County Region (2013) (pdf).
- Richard Gottlieb, Margaret Rhiew, & Brett Natarelli, Reckless Abandon: Vacant Property Ordinances Create Legal Uncertainties, 68 Bus. Law. 669 (2013) (html).
- Dan Immergluck, Yun Sang Lee, & Patrick Terranova, Local Vacant Property Registration Ordinances in the U.S. An Analysis of Growth, Regional Trends, and Some Key Characteristics (2012) (SSRN).
- Kermit J. Lind, Collateral Matters: Housing Code Compliance in the Mortgage Crisis, 32 N. Ill. U. L. Rev. 445 (2012) (SSRN).
- Timothy A. Davis, A Comparative Analysis of State and Local Government Vacant Property Registration Statutes, 44 Urb. Law. 399 (2012) (ABA website).
- Frank S. Alexander, Land Banks and Land Banking (2011) (pdf).
- Frank S. Alexander & Leslie A. Powell, Neighborhood Stabilization Strategies for Vacant and Abandoned Properties, 34(8) Zoning and Planning Law Report (2011) (SSRN).
- Keith H. Hirokawa, Ira Gonzalez, Regulating Vacant Property, 42 Urb. Law. 627 (2010) (pdf).
- Joseph Schilling, Code Enforcement and Community Stabilization: The Forgotten First Responders to Vacant and Foreclosed Homes, 2 Alb. Gov’t L. Rev. 101 (2009) (pdf).
- Doug Leeper, City of Chula Vista Code Enforcement Manager, Testimony before the House Subcommittee on Domestic Policy, Neighborhoods: The Blameless Victims of the Sub-Prime Mortgage Crisis (May 21, 2008) (html).
Selected Recent Judicial Decisions
- Ferguson v. Bank of New York Mellon, No. 14-20585 (5th Cir. Oct. 1, 2015) (holding that MERS was proper beneficiary of deed of trust and thus could assign it).
- Boyd County v. MERSCORP, Inc., No. 14-5647 (6th Cir. June 5, 2015) (holding that question whether counties can sue MERS to enforce provisions of Kentucky’s recording law is for state, rather than federal, courts).
- FHFA v. City of Chicago, No. 11 C 8795 (N.D. Ill. Aug. 23, 2013) (ruling that properties with mortgages backed by Fannie and Freddie are exempt from Chicago’s VPR ordinance).
- Union County v. MERSCORP, Inc., 735 F.3d 730 (7th Cir. 2013) (holding that MERSCORP’s recording of mortgages does not violate Illinois law about mortgage recording).
Local Interest (Illinois, Michigan):
- Chicago open data related to vacant properties
- Chicago Vacant and Abandoned Building App
- Data Driven Detroit’s maps and interactive tools (many relate to property)
- Detroit’s Why Don’t We Own This (displaying info for every property in Detroit)
Selected Blog Posts (or click here for all posts tagged to this topic):
- What is vacant property registration?
- Should cities use MERS for vacant-property registration?
- Vacant property registration continues to spread
- New lawsuits against MERS
- Judge says federal law preempts property registration ordinance
- Chicago proposes stronger maintenance requirements for vacant properties