LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - In an effort to redevelop communities in North Lake Charles, abandoned properties currently owned by the city will soon be up for auction.
"There are many neighbors in North Lake Charles who have been looking at these properties and want to get their hands on these properties because they want to build things, they want to build homes," said Kathleen Bellow, president of the Lake Charles North Redevelopment Authority.
Bellow has watched the growth in south Lake Charles, and wants the same for the area she calls home.
"This area has so much potential," she says about North Lake Charles, hoping to find vacant properties new owners.
"We have been working for several years and have finally come up with a process through CivicSource."
The plan is to auction off dozens of vacant lots, but first the LCNRA wants to give the owners an opportunity to get their properties back.
"Original owners have the chance to redeem - they pay all the back liens and back taxes and they can redeem their properties," said Bellow.
If the former owners don't redeem their properties, others will have a chance to bid. Good news, the auction winners will get the property title free of any lien and with title insurance. It's also good news for the city.
"They are losing out on tax funds, because people are not paying property taxes on those properties," said Bellow.
The city isn't just "not making money" with these properties, it's spending money and manpower keeping these properties mowed and clear.
Bellow says it's also a win-win for the community.
"We want to get our young people thinking about living down the street or around the corner from grandmother instead of thinking to only suitable place is south of town," said Bellow.
Before the November auction, CivicSource is hosting an informational session at the Allen August Multi-Purpose Annex Building on Moeling Street on Tuesday, October 25, at 6 p.m. To attend, email your RSVP to RSVP@CivicSource.com.