EUSTIS, Fla. (Oct. 3, 2016) – On Monday, Oct. 3, 2016, the City of Eustis will kick off Mow to Own, a new program aimed at reducing the number of City-owned, vacant lots by allowing acquisition of property through routine maintenance instead of a cash purchase.
The Mow to Own program commits applicants to maintain vacant, City-owned property for two years, after which the property is conveyed to the applicant. General maintenance includes mowing grass, raking leaves, removal of fallen trees or branches, picking up trash and compliance with all other applicable City Ordinances. Mow to Own properties will be visited regularly by Code Enforcement to ensure compliance. Eligible participants of the program include adjacent owner-occupants, 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations and any other interested party.
“The City of Eustis owns numerous, vacant properties throughout the City that are available for sale or transfer and it’s our desire to see these properties developed or incorporated into neighboring yards,” said City Manager Ron Neibert. “This unique program will allow these properties to return to the tax roll and will reduce the number of properties that our Public Works Department must mow, thereby reducing some of the City’s maintenance expenses.”
Starting on Monday, Oct. 3, interested parties may visit the City’s website here for a list and map of the City’s surplus properties and the Mow to Own application. Of the 42 surplus properties identified, 30 are eligible for the Mow to Own program and 12 properties, which are larger in size and higher in value, are eligible for a cash bid only.
“The properties that we’ve identified as Mow to Own eligible are generally smaller properties, less than a half an acre in size, and are located mostly in residential neighborhoods,” said Lori Barnes, Development Services Director.
The deadline to accept cash bids and Mow to Own applications is 2 p.m. on Nov. 2, 2016. There is a non-refundable application fee of $100 per property to cover administrative and legal fees. Sealed envelopes labeled “Property Bid,” including the completed application, bid sheet and deposit, must be received by the Development Services Department located in City Hall at 4 N. Grove St. on or before the stated deadline.
Following the Nov. 2 deadline, applications will be reviewed by City staff. Should the City receive both a cash bid and a Mow to Own application for the same property, the City will evaluate and award to the proposal offering the best public benefit and return on investment. In the event multiple Mow to Own applications are submitted for a single property, preference will be given first to applicants who are owner-occupants of adjacent properties, then to City of Eustis residents, then to 501(c)(3) organizations, then to other applicants.
For more information on the Mow to Own program, please click here or contact Development Services at (352) 483-5460.
Public Relations Coordinator