Saturday, October 11, 2008

"Bank Owned - For Sale" Signs In Front Of Vacant Homes An Invitation For Copper Thieves?

In the Inland Empire region of Southern California, The Press Enterprise reports:
  • When the foreclosure notice comes and the homeowners leave, the welcome mat usually goes with them. But the sign that soon gets staked in the ground, screaming "Bank Owned," is increasingly sending a different kind of invitation than intended.

  • Metal thefts from vacant, foreclosed homes have spiked noticeably in the past six months, authorities say, and now are a near-daily occurrence throughout the Inland region, from Highland to the High Desert in San Bernardino County to the hard-hit suburbs southwest of Riverside.


  • It often comes after someone notices the sign advertising that the home has an absentee bank owner. "We've been trying to get them to stop throwing those up," said San Bernardino County sheriff's Deputy Laren Leichliter, who works with real estate agents as Highland's problem-oriented policing officer.(1) "That's a dead giveaway."

For more, see Inland foreclosed signs attracting copper thieves.

For other stories on stolen copper, see Copper Thefts I and Copper Thefts II.

(1) Given how big a problem copper theft has become nationwide, I hope real estate agents who insist on putting up these types of signs that attract attention to vacant foreclosures have their malpractice / errors & omissions insurance policies paid up. copper metal theft yak