Abandoned Newburgh Real Estate

9 Carson Avenue
Driving around Newburgh, houses like the one pictured above are a dime a dozen. Perhaps you’ve looked at one of these houses before and thought, “Wow I could fix that place up,” or “That place has so much potential.” You might have also wondered who to contact if you were interested in buying such a house being that there is no real estate information on the property. Well, the City of Newburgh owns a lot of the abandoned real estate that you see crumbling in Newburgh. And, they really should take a more radical approach of offering these homes to people willing to fix them. But instead, they pretty much make the process very difficult and unappealing, thus leaving dilapidated buildings and homes part of the ever constant Newburgh landscape. Their current method is using auctions. But obviously it has NOT been working and those very same properties that are auctioned off end up right back in the City’s hands again in a very short time.

29 Chambers Street-former dog pound This place could have excellent loft/work/live space potential

A certain realtor, Chris Hanson, has proposed the idea of selling City owned property for $1 to first time home buyers who were pre-qualified for an FHA 203K loan (mortgage & renovation loan in one). This type of loan has a time limit in which the work has to begin and be completed (work must begin within 30 days of execution of the Agreement). Thus the city would be guaranteed that the homes would completely renovated and owner-occupied in 6-12 months. That could bring huge change to Newburgh very quickly. If the City was offering something like this how many of you would be interested? I know many people that would. Given the houses are in bad condition and will need a lot of money to fix, but buying a house for $1 one hour from NYC is something unheard of and could be very exciting if the idea was executed. So far this idea has been shot down. But if enough people showed interest in a project like this one, maybe it could take off.

85 Lander

So, until the City can come up with a better idea for selling property, how can you purchase something other than via an auction? The Department of Planning and Development has a guide on their internet page. They also have a PDF file with a listing of the newest properties the City owns. Some of the photos even include original photos of the properties 30-40 years back so you can see what the property is supposed to look like. The list I checked out was last updated in December ’09. Basically, you must fill out a form for a Property Sales Offer, and have a check for $1,500 and funds to finish the project. The check will be placed in an escrow account until a decision is has been made. The money deposited would be returned if the offer was not accepted by the City. You can make an appointment with Tara Miller, Office Manager, at (845) 569-9400 to inspect any of the properties.

Even if the City isn’t making it any easier for dedicated people to make a change in Newburgh, the least we can do is educate each other and find ways to work through their system. Check out the following link to  see more examples of Newburgh Real Estate.

14 Comment

  • Not only would it get these buildings occupied by taxpayers, it would reduce the extraordinary liability on this poor city. Any politician not supporting this should be forced to live in these buildings as they are basically saying that it's acceptable to leave them this way. For who?

  • As a City of Newburgh resident, and the "certain realtor" with the proposal to sell the city-owned properties for $1 to buyers pre-qualified with an FHA 203K loan, I stand behind the idea 100%. I also thank you 100% for including this in your blog! 🙂 To expand on the positives of that: it would rapidly transform neighborhoods by filling in the gaps with owner-occupied homes, it would lower crime (as vacant buildings attract crime – and owner-occupied neighborhoods tend to take care of themselves), police resources could then focus on other problem areas, it would be a huge, positive PR opportunity for the city to document the process of rapid transformation of neighborhoods, it would of course be hugely beneficial to the rest of the Newburgh real estate market – AND – **it would broaden the tax base of the city!! – something desperately needed!

    Thanks again!
    -Chris Hanson

  • Great article, and GREAT idea – If the current leadership were only capable of realizing this (and following through), Newburgh would see a renaissance very quickly.

  • Thanks Chris! I wasn't sure if you wanted your name out there, but I'd be more than happy to adjust to post to show your name. It is a GREAT idea! People need to wake up!

  • Well done! This is a fantastic idea, and every city leader should receive a copy… it's a total win-win situation for the City; we get an influx of new homeowners who contribute to the tax base and turn around eyesores into gorgeous living homes again. I can't think of a single reason not to do this…

  • So what's the reason the city leaders give for NOT doing this? It could practically guarantee them great press for the city — which brings more tax revenues — which sells more houses….

  • From what a little birdie told me…they don't want to do this because they already started their auction idea (that's not successful) and nobody helped them buy their Newburgh house almost 3 decades ago. Sounds ignorant, I know.

  • I also think it's a great idea, let's get people buying these homes and turn around the city. It will benefit everyone.

  • There is a meeting being held for this tonight…it was last night too, but I didn't see the announcement. Click on the link below.


  • Love the idea, with one additional note. Why is it always "1st time home buyers" only. Why not extend such offer(s) to the existing home buyer who may also want to 'upgrade' or move into an area with more resources, such as the City of Newburgh. Better yet, they usually already come with existing (and increasing equity as they wait for the rehab to be done), experience in maintaining a home, etc… just a thought…

  • Has anyone considered the working poor in this town? I keep reading about Newburgh’s location to NYC which make what I’m hearing is the only way to encourage growth and revitalization is by bringing people in from out of town. What about the people who have had generations born and raised in this city that can no longer afford the price of housing due to the tax increase and the influx of people from the southern region of the state that have driven the prices for housing through the roof -to the point where people who have a vested interested in the beauty and history of Newburgh can no longer afford to live in the place they have always called home? There are low income housing for people receiving DSS (not knocking it I work with these folks) The lower middle class seems to have been forgotten in all this revitalization process. I personally work with too many people who due to the rent increases have had to leave Newburgh-not because they wanted to, because they had no choice. What you’re doing is great and long over due. But these grants-loans that you are talking about are very hard to qualify for- I worked for one of the CBO’s that is offering one of them. There has to be a better solution. People born and raised here I think would have MORE of a vested interested in the area, if able to find affordable housing. then people coming up from the City. There are soo many people who don’t want to leave the area, are working making decent money, but are still unable to raise their families here. The dynamics have changed for families, which I’m sure you’re aware. The majority of households are headed by single females. Lets face it with all the advances women have made, men still are paid more for the same job. Don’t forget about the folks that are working -have a vested interested, but fall through the cracks because they don’t meet the minimum requirements to qualify for these grants and loans being offered. There still are some beautiful old home left in Newburgh- it’s seem wrong somehow that they will go to outsiders instead of people born and raised here, who have loved ones that came before and put down roots- for the following generations. I realize you can’t help everyone and resources are limited and the cuts are still coming. Thank you for the work that you are doing- just want you to think about these folks that are falling through the cracks of these programs which are many. Thanks for listening

  • Hi Theresa. Thanks for your comment. You bring up some good points. There are a lot of different ideas on how Newburgh can be revitalized and it’s worth mentioning them all. More ideas definitely can’t hurt. I try to target the people that live in Newburgh already by mentioning the programs that are open to Newburgh residents, like the façade grant and various other grants. It would be great if we could get something going to target the people you are talking about. But in the meanwhile I just try to educate people about the programs that are available thus far. If you find out any information about programs that I have not mentioned, please contact me.

  • Truly appreciate your blog. As someone who has been invloved in the restoration of many buildings in the City of Newburgh there are several issues that need to be addressed. The cost of renovating these properties is higher than most ‘first-time homebuyers’ ever expect. Custom carpentry to restore facades and windows to City standards is expensive. Also, the City Planning and Architectural Review process will take many months, and a building permit cannot be applied for until these approvals are granted. The Building Permitting process takes a while as well. Oftentimes, a 12 month deadline to achieve a Certificate of Occupancy is not realistic. A property just completed on Liberty Street, with fairly straight-forward construction needs, has taken 18 months to C.O. and there is still minor work to be completed.

  • Thanks for your comment Don. The facts you present are important to know as well-especially for a 1st time homebuyer. If you ever want to share some of your restoration projects, please don’t hesitate to contact me.