Empty feeling – List of abandoned properties is expanding

If there were any questions whether or not the continuing national housing crisis has improved in Revere, those questions were answered recently when the City released its annual vacant building list – revealing the disheartening news that more than 100 buildings and homes were identified as vacant or abandoned.

The city began compiling the list several years ago when the housing market was still in a boom cycle. At that time, the list was more of a way to put pressure on property owners who were “landbanking” or keeping blighted properties. That was accomplished by levying fines of up to $3,000 per year for those keeping vacant buildings.

There was no thought that the list would eventually become a barometer for just how bad the housing crisis had become locally.

But that’s just what it has become.

The City identified 104 abandoned buildings and homes this year, which was pretty much in line with last year’s list where around 110 were identified. Approximately 12 of those properties were commercial buildings, with some 92 buildings being residential homes.

Many had hoped there would be marked improvement this year, but so far it doesn’t appear that is the case.

“It is reflective of the reality, which is that we have a lot of abandoned homes,” said Mayor Tom Ambrosino. “We have a lot of bank-owned properties that just aren’t moving.”

Health Agent Nick Catinazzo – whose department oversees the abandoned property efforts – said that the fines and the city’s system has helped turn properties over.

He said that properties typically aren’t lingering on the list for several years. In fact, he said there is a 50 percent turnover rate – meaning that half of the properties on last year’s list were sold and are now occupied.

The bad news is that new abandoned properties come onto the list just as quickly as the old ones leave the list.

“We have a lot of these properties and it’s a constant battle,” said Catinazzo.

The program works by having Inspectional Services employees canvass the neighborhoods looking for properties that appear vacant. After identifying those properties, a letter is sent to the owner of record. If the owner cannot prove that the property is occupied, then a fine is levied.

Fines range from $500 for the first year up to $3,000.

While the list does expose continued weaknesses in the local housing market, it also exposes some good outcomes.

Catinazzo pointed to the fact that the old Stop & Shop in Northgate Plaza has finally come off the abandoned building list after being on there every year. In order to prevent competition, Stop & Shop gladly doled out the $3,000 fine each and every year.

However, now a new market, Price Rite, has opened up in the space and the property is no longer considered vacant.

Catinazzo and the mayor said this should be considered a victory – as they both believe that the yearly fine probably helped push Stop & Shop to make a move.

“That old Stop & Shop is now a Price Rite,” said Catinazzo. “We had them on the list for years. That’s one example of a property that has turned over and gotten back to occupancy. We have a yearly turnover of 50 percent on the vacant properties. So, the program has worked. It’s worked well.”

The mayor said that the City has taken an aggressive approach by using the list, cleaning up abandoned properties rather than letting them sit.

Catinazzo said all the money collected from abandoned property fines goes into a revolving account that is used to clean up and board up abandoned properties. So, the program works to help make the best of what has become a bad situation.

“It’s a lot of work and a lot of paperwork, but it generates money and puts money in our department to help clean up these properties in the City,” said Catinazzo. “It’s worked out really well because instead of these homes sitting there, we go out and board them up if we need to and clean them up…When you have programs in place like this you have dollars to go in and clean up these properties quickly and the whole neighborhood is happy and the abandoned houses don’t become a blight and hurt property values.”

Reardon says efforts are ongoing to sell former pub property

For the second year in a row, a high-profile property co-owned by Ward 4 City Councillor Steve Reardon has ended up on the city’s abandoned properties list.

This year, Reardon has been levied a $1,000 fine, and he said he is fighting it.

“Every effort is being made to sell or to lease the property. I have a number of brokers making efforts everyday to retail the property however the economy and the unique nature of the property and what it needs makes a deal impossible or so it seems at this juncture. The property is not abandoned just because it isn’t presently leased,” he said. “The property is empty but not abandoned,” he repeated.

The city’s abandoned building list is somewhat controversial, and when instituted several years ago Mayor Tom Ambrosino said he thought that there might be a challenge. However, no one ever challenged the validity of it.

The old Reardon’s Pub at the corner of Beach Street and Broadway has been vacant for quite some time after being shut down by the state Department of Revenue for non-payment of state taxes.

Since that time, the property has not been kept up at all – routinely having overgrown weeds, lots of trash and litter and the occasional abandoned car. It also is not fenced off.

Reardon, an attorney by trade, said he doesn’t agree with the city’s designation of his family’s former pub. He said his family has had the property on the market for two years, using several different brokers, and setting a sale price of $1 million.

They have had a couple of potential buyers – a restaurateur was very interested at one point – but none of those deals have panned out.

“It is mainly the economy that is weighing down the effort to sell or to lease the building. I am willing, ready and able to either sell or lease the property,” he said again.

Given that, he said he is not planning to pay the fine until the matter is settled. He also said that he is not paying the property taxes because the property is producing not one dime to pay them. But he added, he has spoken with city officials an assured them there is plenty of equity in the building and that all the taxes will be paid ultimately.

List of abandoned/vacant properties

The City recently released its annual list of Abandoned/Vacant Properties, which comes with a fine of $500 to $3,000. Much to the chagrin of local officials, the list revealed more than 100 abandoned or vacant properties. Below is the full list. Many properties are listed multiple times, as there are multiple owners of record and true ownership is uncertain.

79 American Legion Hwy. – Leemits Petroleum Inc. (Getty Station)

32 Arcadia Street – Irani Alves Brandao/Luis Brandao

58 Bateman Avenue – Elizabeth Andrews

18 Bates Street – German Herrera/Hector Herrera

18 Bates Street – BAC Home Loans, Servicing, LP

55 Beach Street – BAC Home Loans, Servicing, LP

55 Bellingham Avenue – OneWest Services, LLC

133 Bellingham Avenue #2 – BAC Home Loans Servicing
133 Bellingham Avenue #2 – Reynaldo Rodriguez

26 Beverly Street – JP Morgan Chase/WaMu

174 Broadsound Avenue – Vincent Neary

180 Broadsound Avenue – Marion Neary/Vincent Neary

189 Broadway – Patrick Reardon/Stephen Reardon

334 Broadway – Frank Carideo

675 Broadway – Broadway Realty Trust/Michael Venditto

698 Broadway – Omotayo Ajiboye

47 Calumet Street – Alan Campbell

114 Cecilian Avenue – Marcus DeSousa

58 Central Avenue – Lena Hariri

35 Cheever Street – HomeEq. Servicing

50 Clark Road – George Westbrooks

50 Clark Road – The Estate of George Westbrooks/Dorothy Taylor

24 Clifton Street – Richard Milligan

24 Clifton Street – Elizabeth Lonardo, Esq.

24 Clifton Street – Federal Home Loan Mortgage Co.

251 Conant Street – Atlantic & Pacific Real Estate

251 Conant Street – Ever Rodas/Zoila Rodas

14 Dashwood Street – Home Eq/Bank of NY Mellon Trust

41 Eastern Avenue – Antonio Restaino

116 Eastern Mountain Avenue – Loiacono Brunella

116 Eastern Mountain Avenue – BAC Home Loans Servicing

34 Ellerton Street – Diane Dellorusso/Matthew Dellorusso

34 Ellerton Street – BAC Home Loans Servicing

52 Ellerton Street – Fannie Mae

52 Ellerton Street – Century 21 Mario Real Estate

1 Endicott Avenue – Roman Catholic Archbishop of Boston

2 Endicott Avenue – Archdiocese of Boston

2 Endicott Avenue – Roman Catholic Archbishop of Bosotn

109 Eustis Street – Nicholas DeFilippo

22 Fairfield Street – Rosario Sarro

53 Fairfield Street – The Carifio Family Realty Trust

80 Fenno Street – Michele Montina

80 Fenno Street – BAC Field Services Corp.

237 Fenno Street – Frank Vitiello/Dorothy Vitiello

253 Fenno Street – BAC Home Loans Servicing

253 Fenno Street – BAC Field Services Corp.

301 Fenno Street – Keith Goodrich

301 Fenno Street – BAC Home Loans Servicing

13-15 Francis Street – Bunrith Sun

13-15 Francis Street – BAC Home Loans Servicing

10 Franklin Avenue #106 – Hector Guerrero

10 Franklin Avenue #106 – BAC Home Loans Servicing

10 Franklin Avenue #207 – HomeEq Servicing

10 Franklin Avenue #207 – Federal National Mortgage Assoc.

14 Franklin Avenue – Federal Home Loan Mortgage Co.

46 Franklin Avenue – Faiza Bensadok

46 Franklin Avenue – HomeEq Servicing

52 Franklin Avenue – Touhami Mehdi

30 Genessee Street – Jacy Desouza

108 Geneva Street – Seema Pal/Jai Pal

108 Geneva Street – BAC Field Services Corp.

74 Grover Street – Federal National Mortgage Assoc. (Fannie Mae)

19 Harrington Street – Francisco Pereira

19 Harrington Street – BAC Field Services Corp.

38 Highland Street – BAC Home Loans Servicing

38 Highland Street – BAC Field Services Corp.

16 Hyde Street – Rosa Bojorquez/Romeo Landaverde

35 Jarvis Street – Marie Claude

86 Jones Road – Elvin Esmurria/Annie Esmurria

87 Jones Road – Robert Maltacea/Billie-Jo Maltacea

46 Lynnway – Richard Silverio

38 Madison Street – Antonio Demorais

186 Malden Street – Maritza Montecinos

390 Malden Street – Fannie Mae

390 Malden Street – Century 21 Mario Real Estate

45 McCoba Street #52 – Marcello Falcon

45 McCoba Street #52 – HomeEq Servicing

93 Milano Avenue – Margarita Ortiz

229 Mountain Avenue – Premiere Asset Services

229 Mountain Avenue – Century 21 Mario Real Estate

10 Nerious Avenue – David Schweim/Brooke Garceau

10 Nerious Avenue – BAC Loans, Servicing

16 North Avenue – Loreena Lamarca/James Celona

1069 North Shore Road – David Sullivan

1111 North Shore Road – NE Heritage Property Corp.,

1539 North Shore Road – George Mozek

1644 North Shore Road – Federal Home Loan Mortg. Co. (Freddie Mac)

182-184 North Shore Road – Hiram Ortega

182-184 North Shore Road – America Home Mtg. Servicing

15 Oak Island Road – Joseph Woods/Ann Cheri Woods

15 Oak Island Road – BAC Home Loans Servicing

17 Oak Island Road – Joseph Woods

40 Oak Island Road – Carmella Imbrescia/Carmella Belibasakis

1 Oak Tree Lane – Deutsche Bank Natl Trust Co.

90 Ocean Avenue – Saratoga Trust/David Chin

27 Page Street – Fannie Mae

27 Page Street – Century 21 Mario Real Estate/Thomas Mario

39 Porter Avenue #1 – Salvatore Cantone

39 Porter Avenue #1 – Federal Home Loan Mortgage Co. (Freddie Mac)

39A Philomena Avenue – Stephen O’Connor/Amanda O’Connor

311 Proctor Avenue – Dorothy Spinazolla/Anthony Spinazoll

311 Proctor Avenue – Liquidation Properties, Inc.

449 Proctor Avenue – Federal National Mortgage Assoc. (Fannie Mae)

14 Putnam Road – Lillian Anderson

14 Putnam Road – Nation’s First/Brosnan Realty

35 Reservoir Avenue – Ocwen Loan Servicing

532 Revere Beach Blvd. – Fiesta Agency

532 Revere Beach Blvd. – Joseph Lasden/Queen Anne Building

596 Revere Beach Blvd. – Paul Coleman

429 Revere Beach Pkwy. – HSBC Mortgage Services, Inc.

765 Revere Beach Pkwy. – John Levantakis

154 Ridge Road – John McLaughlin/Danae McLaughlin

154 Ridge Road – BAC Home Loans Servicing

315B Ridge Road – Leslie Gast/Heidi Thomson

315B Ridge Road – BAC Loans Servicing

315B Ridge Road – Century 21 Mario Real Estate/Thomas Mario

69 Rose Street – Federal National Mortgage Assoc. (Fannie Mae)

347 Salem Street – Karen Griffen-Ward/David C. Ward

347 Salem Street – Kyle Shinnick

46 Shirley Avenue – Federal Home Loan Mortgage Co. (Freddie Mac)

164 Shirley Avenue – Steven Gelerman

176 Shirley Avenue – Gelerman Family Trust

85 Squire Road – Dominik Lay

85 Squire Road – Kottier Inc. DBA Burger King

339 Squire Road – Weston Atlantic As Limited/Par Wilder-Manley Assoc.

49 Stone Street – Orlys Machado

53 Thorndike Street – Pauline Destattier/William Galla

34 True Street – Arthur Orlandino

459 Vane Street – Deutsche Bank Natl Trust

33-35 Victoria Street – Jaime Giron

33-35 Victoria Street – BAC Field Services Corp,

147 Walnut Avenue – Richard Tan

220 Walnut Avenue – Robert Damiano

220 Walnut Avenue – Federal National Mortgage Assoc. (Fannie Mae)

14 Washburn Avenue – Judith Farrell

16 Washburn Avenue – Judith Farrell

66 Washington Avenue – Julio Ramos/Janet Santiago

66 Washington Avenue – Field Asset Services

66 Washington Avenue – Chase WaMu Home Mortgage

19 Wave Avenue #2 – Chase WaMu Home Mortgage

1015 Winthrop Avenue – American Home Mortg. Servicing

1043 Winthrop Avenue – Catherine Pires

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