As of July, 2014, a change was made to an existing statute, NJSA 46:10B-51, that requires all creditors initiating a mortgage foreclosure proceeding against residential property to provide the municipality information related to that action. Creditors must provide the following information:
  • The name and contact information for the representative of the creditor responsible for receiving complaints of violations of code or property maintenance;
  • Street address, block and lot number of the residential property;
  • Name and contact information of an individual located in the state of New Jersey authorized to accept service on behalf of the foreclosing creditor; and,
  • Whether or not the residential property is subject to the Fair Housing Act.
Additionally, creditors must provide each municipality’s clerk a listing of all residential properties in that municipality for which the particular creditor has commenced foreclosure proceedings. “Creditor” is defined in Assembly Bill A347 as a federal or State chartered bank, savings bank, savings and loan association or credit union, any person required to be licensed under the provisions of the “New Jersey Licensed Lenders Act,” P.L.1996, c.157 (C.17:11C-1 et seq.), and any entity acting on behalf of the creditor named in the debt obligation including, but not limited to, servicers.

The thrust of this statute is to require a foreclosing creditor to abate nuisances or code violations if a residential property is abandoned or vacated after the foreclosure proceeding has been initiated. If a foreclosing creditor has been advised by a municipality to abate nuisances or code violations, and fails to do so within 30 days, substantial fines or imprisonment may occur.

Although the responsibility for maintenance of the outside of Condominium Associations belongs to the Associations, this law can be especially helpful to homeowner associations where the units are owned in fee simple. However, maintenance or code violations within a condominium unit should also be reported to the municipality to force the foreclosing creditor to address these issues.