Council votes to impose vacant property fine

Council votes to impose vacant property fine

WILMINGTON, Del./May 10, 2017 (AP) (StlRealEstate.News)— New Castle County Council has voted to impose fines for persistently vacant homes and commercial buildings.

Media outlets report that the council voted Tuesday to approve the new $1,000 fine. Officials estimate that there are more than 1,300 vacant and abandoned properties within unincorporated areas of the county.

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The county created a registry system created two years ago, but owners only added a few hundred homes. The vote gives county officials the power to register vacant homes and assess a one-time $1,000 fee. That fine is in addition to annual fees that start at $100 in the first year and escalate to $5,000 at 10 years.

Property owners who register vacant properties themselves aren’t subject to the one-time fee. The rules also apply to commercial buildings.

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