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Letter: State must speed up foreclosure process

State must speed up foreclosure process

Though well-intended, State Sen. Jeffrey Klein’s vacant and abandoned property legislation does not address the underlying issue or resolve the situation for neighborhoods and consumers. The issue lies in the fact that New York has the second-longest foreclosure process in the country, taking over 3 years. This proposed legislation requiring lenders to maintain properties that they do not own will expose them to both unnecessary financial burden and legal concerns, such as trespassing.

The property registry will not resolve the neighborhood blight but only serve as an advertisement of properties that are ripe for vandalism and other illegal activity. The passage of Klein’s bill will not resolve the situation for neighborhoods, but rather add additional costs for future consumers, further eroding housing affordability.

The best solution is to complete the foreclosure action in a timely manner, so the property can be sold to a new homeowner. Ohio and Pennsylvania are advancing bipartisan legislation, with input from both lenders and consumer advocacy groups, that will create a fast-track foreclosure process for vacant and abandoned properties. The New York Mortgage Bankers Association would welcome working with Klein and consumer advocacy groups to craft bipartisan fast-track foreclosure legislation that will truly address this blight caused by New York’s extremely long foreclosure process.

Marianne Collins

Executive Director and COO

New York Mortgage Bankers Association