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Legalease
Legalease, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 16288
Experience:  13 years experience in RE Law, including LL/Tenant, contractor disputes, comm'l prop. issues
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A fire occurred in a home I owned in 2012. I was informed by

Customer Question

A fire occurred in a home I owned in 2012. I was informed by the city that an escrow account created for me from insurance funds could not be released unless the building was deemed dangerous, sold or repaired. The fire damage was significant and more than the claim. How can I retrieve my funds?
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Legalease replied 8 months ago.

Hello there --

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Was there a mortgage on the property and if so, has it been paid (either with insurance funds or otherwise)?

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What happened to the building ? Was it condemned, sold or repaired?

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MARY

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Hi, the did not have any mortgage I own it outright. A house fire occurred. It has not been sold , I have not been given any assistance on being condemned from the city. It is difficult to sell a home with significant fire damage although I was told by the city if it was sold then the escrow would need to be added to the price and then once the home was brought up to code if...then I would get my escrow returned. My problem is that the estimates were too expensive over the amount of insurance, and now I have several thousand dollars locked up in escrow. Thanks.
Expert:  Legalease replied 8 months ago.

Hello again

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Are you or is anyone else living there or is the damage too severe for that?

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MARY

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I am sorry I should have mentioned. the home is vacant and has been since the fire in 2012. it is secured and borded up no one can live there damage too bad
Expert:  Legalease replied 8 months ago.

Hello again --

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I find the arrangement that the insurance money was deposited with the city rather odd and not at all very common. Unfortunately, you are stuck between a rock and a hard place here because you need the funds to do SOMETHING with the property (I assume). Have you spoken with a local attorney about a method to either appease the city or pursue the insurance company regarding the funds in escrow? A local attorney would have to read the insurance policy to determine if there are any loopholes that can be used against the insurance company to force them to turn the funds back over to you and if there is nothing at all in the insurance contract, then the attorney will have to pursue the city to release the funds to you so that you can get on with what you need to do with the property.

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MARY