These “Winterized Homes” aren’t taken care of very well. They still can suffer mold issues from all the stagnant air that builds up inside. A Property Preservation Crew doesn’t do much to really preserve the home. They just make sure everything is shut off and locked. After that, the house just sits unattended for however long it takes.
When someone abandons their home, it can take a few months for the electric company to notice the idle use of their services. They will shut off the utilities after 3 months of inactivity. The home insurance will generally drop their coverage on the house after 3 months because of vandalism issues.
After a year of the house being abandoned, the utility companies will remove the glass meters. I’m not sure why the glass meters are removed, but I’m sure that after a year they are more interested in recovering the meters to prevent the chance of it being destroyed. After the house is winterized, then lawnmowing is the next step.
You can expect nobody else will be in and out of the house for a long time. You can mostly expect lawnmowing crews to be back and forth, if they are even hired at all. Many times, the grass is just left to grow long to save money.
In slightly more dense areas, the neighbors act a little more protective of the abandoned property, like they own the place. Many times, when I walked onto an abandoned property, I will see neighbors watching me closely. Some have actually approached me like I’m a criminal. They say there have been other criminals in the area who break into the house.
Sometimes it’s easier to walk around the abandoned home when the neighbors are spread further apart, or even when the neighbors also appear to be abandoned as well. The closer built homes make it harder to tell what is going on with the abandoned home. In fact, I know one guy who would park his truck in the neighboring abandoned home drive way to make it look like activity is going on there. This was in Aberdeen.
What incentive do the Property Preservation crews have to put a lot of effort into repairing the home? They tend to get poorly paid, and there is no bonus to do more than the minimum work. Like they are going to take the time to add a new feature to an abandoned home. A deck is a luxury feature and does not reach your goal of preserving a property.
If the Preservation Crew does any kind of work, it is to fill holes that homeless people could squeeze through to get inside. They don’t want any larger creatures to habitate the places (homeless). But, on the other hand, the Preservation Crews will allow smaller holes to suffice. i have seen many cats demonstrate how they can get inside or make effective use of an abandoned home for their own purposes.