Market Wise Q&A: How can we sell when our neighbor’s house and yard is a complete mess?

Pat Kapowich for the San Jose Mercury News Q: We want to sell and move but our neighbor's house and yard
is a complete mess. What do we do, short of contacting the city?
How will this impact the sale of our home?

A: You or your licensee should politely approach the family and
discuss ways to improve their property without being offensive.
Could you and their neighbors pitch in with labor and expenses?
After all, their homes are adversely affected, to the tune of
thousands of dollars, by residential blight. If that fails, small claims
court and city governments move too slowly and often without power.
You should consult a real estate attorney to discuss your options.
Sometimes, one well-crafted letter from an attorney will get sought-
after results. Otherwise, if their Christmas lights are not down before
the first open house, the best buyers won’t get out of their cars.

Market Wise Column 5-10-08

Do you have a question for the new real estate Q&A Market Wise column in the SJMN? If so, please email them to: