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Indianapolis, IN

200 E Washington, Indianapolis, Indiana, 46204

Step-by-Step Guide to Buying Indianapolis, Indiana, Neglected, Vacant and Abandoned Real Estate

Vacant and abandoned buildings in Indianapolis, IN fall under the jurisdiction of Renew Indianapolis.  The mission of Renew Indianapolis is to turn abandoned and blighted properties back into productive real estate.

About the Properties

All Indianapolis real estate listings on Derelict.com are available through Renew Indianapolis.  Renew Indianapolis aggregates city-owned, bank or lender owned, and other governmental surplus property. 

Note: We highly recommend finding a good real estate lawyer to help you through the acquisition process.

Step 1 - Choose and inspect your property

Once you have found the property you want on Derelict.com it's very important you don't just buy the property sight-unseen.  What may seem like a great deal may actually be a money pit. First drive by the property to evaluate the exterior condition and get a feel for the neighborhood.  If you would like to gain entrance to a building you will need to schedule an appointment for a viewing. 

Schedule a Property Viewing - Fill out this form and expect to hear back from a city representative within five business days.

Step 2 - Do your homework

Determine what you want to do with the property and put together the expected costs for your project.  You will be expected to show the financial ability to cover the costs.  Expect to pay a minimum of $70 per square foot for renovations and $120 per square foot for new construction. 

The cost to buy the parcel of property may be fixed or may be negotiable.  There may also be additional requirements if the property was purchased by the City of Indianapolis as part of a federal Neighborhood Stabilization Program.

Prior to making your offer, get a thorough understanding of the real estate market near your property.  Know the value your property will be worth once it is redeveloped or renovated.  Also be sure not to underestimate the value you may bring to the neighborhood once you complete your project.  For instance, if you are a business that will will hire workers, they may take that into account when reviewing your offer.  Larger structures are marketed to developers and users that will benefit the neighborhood.  These structures often have nominal prices.

Step 3 - Make your offer

At this point you have inspected the property inside an out,  you've researched all your costs, and you understand the potential upside.  You're ready to make an offer.  Alternatively, you can also ask to make an Option to Purchase.  A purchase option is a contract that gives you site control (typically 6 - 12 months) but not ownership of the property.  The option fee is a negotiable percent of the purchase price and gives you time to get your budget and financing together.  If you are unable to close on the deal, your fee is forfeited.  If you are able to close the deal, the fee is applied to the purchase price.

Application for Individual Homesteaders - Use this application of you plan to buy, rehabilitate or construct a new home, and live in the property yourself.

Application for Single and Multiple Properties - This application is for all other individuals and organizations that plan to buy one or more properties but not live on the property.

Renew Indianapolis Priorities, Policies, and Procedures - This document is worth reviewing as it outlines everything they will be looking for on your application.

Step 4 - Wait patiently

Once your application is submitted it enters a review process that can take up to two months to complete.  Approved applications must pass both a Review Committee as well as a gain approval from the Board of Directors.

Buying Timeline - This page outlines the step-by-step application process.

Step 5 - Closing

Once your offer is accepted they will let you know of any contingencies such as having having a lien to secure performance of your project.   You are responsible for any recording and title fees as well as title insurance.  You must complete all renovation or new construction within the time frame you agree to with Renew Indianapolis. 


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